Barbara Erskine is a British history enthusiast that has written bestselling novels. Erskine’s work combines her love for history with supernatural elements. Born in Nottingham in 1944, Erskine can trace her roots back to India.
Order of Barbara Erskine Short Stories/Novellas
|1||Milestones||1992||Description / Buy|
Order of Barbara Erskine Short Story Collections
|1||Encounters||1990||Description / Buy|
|2||Distant Voices||1997||Description / Buy|
|3||Sands Of Time||2003||Description / Buy|
Order of Barbara Erskine Standalone Novels
|1||Lady of Hay||1986||Description / Buy|
|2||Kingdom of Shadows||1988||Description / Buy|
|3||Child of the Phoenix||1992||Description / Buy|
|4||Midnight Is a Lonely Place||1994||Description / Buy|
|5||House of Echoes||1996||Description / Buy|
|6||On the Edge of Darkness||1998||Description / Buy|
|7||Whispers in the Sand||2000||Description / Buy|
|8||Hiding from the Light||2002||Description / Buy|
|9||Daughters of Fire||2006||Description / Buy|
|10||The Warrior's Princess||2008||Description / Buy|
|11||Time’s Legacy||2010||Description / Buy|
|12||River of Destiny||2012||Description / Buy|
|13||The Darkest Hour||2014||Description / Buy|
|14||Sleeper’s Castle||2016||Description / Buy|
|15||The Ghost Tree||2018||Description / Buy|
Her grandfather was employed by the East India Company. He also served in the Indian Army. He met and married Erskine’s grandmother, who originated from South West Ireland, in India. The author’s mother and her sister were born in the same country.
However, by the time Erskine entered the picture, the family had returned to England. Though, India was never far from the household. First of all, Erskine’s home was filled with reminders of her mother’s Asian home, including silk saris and cedar-lined trunks.
Additionally, friends and colleagues from India continued to spoil the family with gifts. Erskine grew up in an environment filled with the smell of spices and incense. Her unique heritage was part of the reason why she eventually developed an interest in history.
She knew that her father was a Battle of Britain Spitfire pilot. She was also aware that her ancestors were clergymen for many centuries and that they lived a respectable life befitting their aristocratic bloodline.
Her great aunt, a genealogist, would often regale the author with ancient tales about their family tree. It was hardly a surprise when Erskine attended Edinburgh University as a student of Scottish History.
It was during her time at the University that Erskine attempted to write her first novel. She failed, but only temporarily. While she abandoned the manuscript, she eventually re-discovered it and turned it into ‘Kingdom of Shadows’.
Like most authors, Erskine’s success wasn’t immediate. For a time, she worked as a researcher. People used her skills and knowledge to write art and history books. Once she decided to make more of an effort to pursue publishing, Erskine started writing and then selling short stories.
It took Barbara Erskine a decade to finally publish ‘Lady of Hay’, a novel that attracted so much attention that the author found herself on Primetime TV talking about it. It was the first step in a long and illustrious career.
Erskine’s work stands out because it is historical fiction with elements of the supernatural. She spends a lot of time writing about ghosts. She admits that her work is difficult to categorize. Some of her novels have been classified as horror to Erskine’s own surprise. Though, she probably wouldn’t use that label herself.
Even though Erskine has spent multiple decades writing fiction, the process hasn’t necessarily become easier, though it has changed. Initially, she wrote her books by hand. Once she was done, she would type them out, and then hire a professional to type them again.
But eventually, technology changed and the author acquired a computer that simplified matters. As such, she no longer produces clear drafts of her work. Rather, she keeps revising and refining the same copy until she is satisfied with the results.
Best Barbara Erskine Books
For Erskine, writing novels is often quite exhausting and she is always relieved when she finishes a manuscript. Some of the best novels in her bibliography include:
Lady of Hay: Jo Clifford thought she understood hypnosis. The talented and successful journalist was certain that it was all fake and she couldn’t wait to disprove it, especially the silly notion of past-life regression. But then she made the mistake of submitting herself to a hypnosis session. The experience shoved her back through time into the life of Matilda, Lady of Hay.
House of Echoes: Joss never knew her family. She was adopted at birth. A wife to Luke, her husband, and mother to Tom, her son, she had carved out a life for herself. Everything changed when she inherited Belheddon Hall from her newly discovered family.
She was eager to settle down in the old house and she couldn’t wait to find out what the home had to tell her about her family. But then the voices started. The house was haunted. Or at the very least, Joss knew that an invisible presence was watching her. And she wasn’t the only one hearing or seeing things.
Joss must now explore and understand the tragic history of her new home and what it means for her family’s sanity.
When Does The Next Barbara Erskine book come out?
Barbara Erskine doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is The Ghost Tree and was released on March, 7th 2019.