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Jeffrey Howard Archer

Jeffrey Howard Archer Jeffrey Howard Archer[1†]

Jeffrey Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare, is a renowned English novelist and life peer known for his bestselling books published in over 114 countries and 47 languages, with sales exceeding 275 million copies. Previously a Member of Parliament, his political career was cut short by a perjury conviction. Archer remains active in the House of Lords and is married to Mary Archer, a notable scientist in solar power[1†][2†].

Early Years and Education

Jeffrey Howard Archer was born in the City of London Maternity Hospital on April 15, 1940[1†]. When he was two weeks old, he and his family moved to the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, where he spent most of his young life[1†][2†].

Archer was educated at Wellington School[1†][6†], and later at Brasenose College, Oxford[1†][6†]. At Oxford, he was successful in athletics, competing in sprinting and hurdling[1†][2†]. He was President of the University Athletics Club and went on to run the 100 yards in 9.6 seconds for Great Britain in 1966[1†][6†].

After completing his O levels in English Literature, Art, and History, Archer explored various occupations, including training to join the police and army[1†][5†]. However, he eventually settled as a physical education teacher at Vicar’s Hill, a Prep School in Hampshire, and later at the prestigious Dover College in Kent[1†][5†].

He later enrolled at the Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, where he earned a diploma in teaching[1†][5†]. It is suspected that he provided the university with false academic qualifications to get into the course[1†][5†].

Career Development and Achievements

Jeffrey Archer’s career is marked by a blend of success in literature and politics, punctuated by a significant legal battle[1†]. His career began in politics, where he served as a Member of Parliament[1†]. However, his political career came to an abrupt end following a financial crisis[1†].

Archer then turned to writing and published his first novel, ‘Not A Penny More, Not a Penny Less’, in 1976[1†][8†]. His books have topped bestseller lists around the world, with sales of over 275 million copies in 100 countries and more than 50 languages[1†][7†]. His works have been #1 in 17 countries, including the US (New York Times), UK (Sunday Times), Germany (Der Spiegel), Australia, South Africa, Canada, New Zealand, India (The Times of India), Ireland, Finland, South Africa, and Denmark among others[1†][7†].

He has written 25 novels, 93 short stories, 3 plays, 3 children’s books, 3 prison diaries, 3 plays, and 2 screenplays[1†][7†]. His 26th novel, ‘Next in Line’, was published worldwide on 29 October 2022[1†][7†].

Despite his success in literature, Archer’s career has been marred by controversy. In 1999, his political career ended when he was found guilty of committing perjury during a libel case he had brought against the ‘Daily Star’[1†][8†].

First Publication of His Main Works

Jeffrey Archer’s writing career spans over four decades, with his first novel published in 1975[9†]. His works have been translated into more than 97 languages and have sold over 275 million copies worldwide[9†][1†]. Here are some of his main works:

Archer’s works are characterized by their intricate plotting, unforgettable characters, and dramatic climaxes[9†][1†]. His ability to blend fact and fiction has earned him a vast readership and made him one of the most successful authors of his generation[9†][1†].

Analysis and Evaluation

Jeffrey Archer’s works have been a subject of much debate and analysis. His writing style, characterized by intricate plotting, unforgettable characters, and dramatic climaxes, has earned him a vast readership[13†]. However, his prose has also been criticized for its use of cliché, mixed metaphor, and implausibility[13†][14†]. Despite these criticisms, Archer’s resilience and ability to captivate readers with his storytelling have made him an enduring figure in the literary world[13†][14†].

Archer’s works often reflect his own experiences, lending an air of authenticity to his narratives[13†]. His novels, such as “Kane and Abel” and “First Among Equals”, showcase his understanding of the political landscape, while his personal struggles and triumphs add depth to his characters[13†].

Critics have noted that Archer’s works, despite their commercial success, often raise questions about authorship and literary merit[13†][14†]. Some have questioned whether Archer writes his books himself or employs ghostwriters[13†][14†]. Despite these controversies, Archer’s novels continue to sell well, demonstrating his appeal to a broad audience[13†][14†].

Archer’s ability to bounce back from personal and professional setbacks has been a defining aspect of his career[13†][14†]. His return to writing after his imprisonment and the continued success of his books, such as “Paths of Glory”, attest to his resilience and the enduring appeal of his storytelling[13†][14†].

In conclusion, Jeffrey Archer’s works, while often criticized for their literary style, have found a significant audience due to their intricate plots and memorable characters[13†]. His personal experiences and understanding of politics add a unique dimension to his narratives, making him a notable figure in the world of literature[13†].

Personal Life

Jeffrey Archer has been married to Dame Mary Archer DBE for over 53 years[15†]. They have two sons, William and James[15†], and three grandsons and two granddaughters[15†]. The family divides their time between homes in London, Cambridge, and Mallorca[15†].

Archer’s personal life has not been without controversy. In 2001, he was found guilty of perjury in a libel case and was sentenced to four years in jail[15†][16†]. He was released in 2003, having served half his sentence[15†][16†]. Despite several reported parole violations during his time as a prisoner, which were reported in national newspapers, Archer was released after serving half of his sentence[15†][7†].

Despite these challenges, Archer has continued to write and publish novels, demonstrating resilience and dedication to his craft.

Conclusion and Legacy

Jeffrey Archer’s life and career have been marked by both remarkable success and significant controversy[1†][17†]. Despite the challenges he faced, including a financial scandal and a prison sentence for perjury[1†][17†], Archer demonstrated resilience and an unwavering commitment to his craft[1†][14†].

His writing career, spanning over four decades, has seen him become a bestselling author, with his works translated into multiple languages and sold in millions of copies worldwide[1†][17†]. His novels, short stories, and non-fiction works have captivated a global audience, and his writing career remains strong even today[1†][17†].

Archer’s legacy is a testament to his iron self-belief and determination[1†][14†]. His jail sentence, rather than ending his career, sparked a new phase of creativity and led to the creation of the three-volume memoir, "A Prison Diary"[1†][17†]. This resilience and ability to turn adversity into opportunity are key aspects of his legacy[1†][14†].

Despite the controversies that have marred his reputation, Archer’s impact on the literary world is undeniable[1†][17†]. His works, particularly the Kane and Abel series, the Clifton Chronicles, and the William Warwick series, continue to be read and appreciated by readers around the globe[1†].

In conclusion, Jeffrey Archer’s life and career serve as a reminder of the power of resilience, the importance of self-belief, and the enduring appeal of a well-told story[1†][14†].

Key Information

References and Citations:

  1. Wikipedia (English) - Jeffrey Archer [website] - link
  2. Simple Wikipedia (English) - Jeffrey Archer [website] - link
  3. AllFamous.org - Jeffrey Archer (Novelist) - Age, Birthday, Bio, Facts, Family, Net Worth, Height & More [website] - link
  4. Jeffrey Archer - About [website] - link
  5. Famous Authors - None [website] - link
  6. BookBrowse.com - Jeffrey Archer author biography [website] - link
  7. IMDb - Jeffrey Archer - Biography [website] - link
  8. The Independent - Jeffrey Archer interview: The best-selling author and former politician on good yarns, early starts and bouncing back [website] - link
  9. Jeffrey Archer - All Books & Plays [website] - link
  10. Goodreads - Listopia: The Best of Jeffery Archer [website] - link
  11. Wikipedia (English) - Category [website] - link
  12. Jeffrey Archer - Popular Book Series [website] - link
  13. Pan Macmillan - Jeffrey Archer on his greatest inspirations and the book he didn’t want to end [website] - link
  14. The Guardian - Guess who's back? The indestructible Mr Jeffrey Archer [website] - link
  15. Goodreads - Author: Jeffrey Archer (Author of Kane & Abel) [website] - link
  16. The Guardian - Q&A [website] - link
  17. Hooked to Books - The Complete List of Jeffrey Archer Books in Reading Order - Hooked To Books [website] - link
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