Jeffrey Archer Books

Jeffrey Archer is a British author, who achieved fame and notoriety as a Member of Parliament before turning his hand to writing fiction. Archer was never far from scandal during his time in Parliament, and although his time as a politician ended around the turn of the 21st century, Archer remained a much-respected member of the literary community, and his books, including his prison diaries, still sold extremely well, regardless of the author’s reputation at the time.

Jeffrey’s was born in London in the year 1940 to a father who worked in a printing firm. He spent his early years in Somerset. Archer attended the Wellington School and subsequently went to Brasenose College- Oxford. At Brasenose, Jeffrey was elected as President of the Athletics club. He achieved an athletics award and also represented Britain in 1966 where he ran for 100 yards in just 9 seconds. After graduating from college, he taught physical education at Vicar’s Hill school-Hampshire and later taught at Dover College-Kent. Jeffrey was nominated to the Greater London Council and represented Louth in Parliament from 1964-1969 at the age of 29. He also served as the Conservative Party Chairman in 1985/86.

Order of A Prison Diary Series (Non-Fiction)

# Read Title Published
1 A Prison Diary 2002
2 Purgatory 2005
3 Heaven 2006

Order of Jeffrey Archer Childrens Books

Order of Jeffrey Archer Non-Fiction Books

Order of Jeffrey Archer Short Story Collections

Order of Jeffrey Archer Standalone Novels

Order of Kane and Abel Series

# Read Title Published
1 Shall We Tell the President? 1977
2 Kane and Abel 1979
3 The Prodigal Daughter 1982

Order of The Clifton Chronicles Series

Anthologies/Collaborations

# Read Title Published
1 The Grown-Ups' Book Of Books 1999
Print: Print PDF

Jeffrey Archer was born on April 15th 1940 on the English town of Weston-super-Mare. In fact, he actually spent the first two weeks of his life in London, being born in the City of London Maternity Hospital, before moving to Weston-super-Mare. When he was 11, Archer gained a scholarship to Wellington School in the country of Somerset.

Upon leaving school, Archer tried his hand at various jobs, including spending time with the Met. However, it was in his role as a PE teacher that Archer found his first true vocation, working in a prep school in Manchester, and then a college in Kent. This then led to Archer spending time at Oxford University, where he gained his Diploma of Education while studying at Brasenose College. He also was a successful athlete, eventually becoming president of the university’s athletics club due to his prowess on the track.

In 1967, Archer eventually made the move into politics, as he became a councillor on the Greater London Council as a representative for the Conservative Party. He spent three years on the council, while, at the same time, starting up his own PR company, known as Arrow Enterprises.

In 1969, at the age of 29, Jeffrey Archer took the step up into the big time, as he was elected Member of Parliament for the constituency of Louth, which is in the county of Lincolnshire. Archer would remain the Member of Parliament for Louth until the 1974 general election, when he stood down due to financial difficulties he found himself in after an investment went wrong which left him close to bankruptcy.

To stave off imminent bankruptcy, Archer turn to writing, and he wrote his first novel, Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less after he stood down as the Member of Parliament for Louth. It is alleged that Archer drew on his own personal experiences of financial difficulties. It chronicles the rise and fall of a Polish immigrant to the United States. Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less was adapted into a mini-series for the BBC in 1990, which proved to be a surprise hit.

In 1977, Archer wrote Shall We Tell The President?, which, at the time, was a standalone novel about a plot to kill the President of the United States of America. However, in 1986, Shall We Tell The President? was revised to be part of the Kane and Abel series, with Florentyna Kane taking the place of President Edward Kennedy in the revised edition. After the revision, this would be the last book in the Kane and Abel trilogy, with Kane and Abel the first book chronologically in the series, followed by The Prodigal Daughter. The novel Kane and Abel would be Archer’s best-selling novel, and remains a firm favourite of Archer’s fans.

During the ’80s, Archer would continue to write, but it would be standalone novels, short stories and plays, as well as four children’s novels which were published at the start of the 1980s. But writing would take a backseat for the majority of Jeffrey Archer’s time, as he returned to mainstream politics, becoming the chairman of the Conservative Party in 1985 under Margaret Thatcher’s leadership. However, he continued to court controversy, alienating voters, and then eventually having to step down due to a story in the News of the World regarding his alleged time spent with a prostitute. While the News of the World story did not claim Archer has sex with the prostitute, the Daily Star did claim Archer paid for sex. This led to Archer suing the Daily Star for libel, whichthe former politician won and he was awarded £500,000 in damages.

However, the Libel court case would prove to be Archer’s downfall, as, in 2000, he was charged with perjury and perverting the course of justice at the aforementioned trial. July 19, 2001, Archer was found guilty and was then sentenced to spend four years in prison. While this would obviously prove detrimental to his personal life and his political aspirations, it also got Archer back into the author’s saddle, as his series of three books, A Prison Diary documented his time behind bars. Each book documents a different prison, and is written in the style of Dante’s Divine Comedy.

Archer would continue writing standalone novels and short stories until 2011, when he set about writing the Clifton Chronicles series of books, chronicling the life and times of the Clifton family over the course of a century. The first book in the series, Only Time Will Tell, was published in 2011, and it gained Archer great critical and commercial success. There are seven books in the Clifton Chronicles series, each book going forward in time through the family’s comings and goings. The Clifton Chronicles series has put Jeffrey Archer right back at the fore of British literature, and each book has been eagerly anticipated worldwide.

Jeffrey Archer married Mary Weeden in 1996, and they have two children together, William and James. Archer has also survived a battle with prostate cancer in 2013. All-in-all, Jeffrey Archer has had more drama in his life than most of his characters seem to encounter.

Jeffrey met his wife during his working years at oxford and went on to marry her in the year 1966. After years of a lustrous political career, he went into business, investing in an Aqua blast, a Canadian company. The company went bankrupt, leaving Archer with debts in excess of £400,000. Faced with a possible liquidation, Jeffrey resigned from politics. Jeffrey Archer began his writing career at the age of 34, after being compelled to pay his creditors from the Aqua Blast liquidation. His debut novel `Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less’, was a great seller. It saw thousands of copies shipped to seventeen countries worldwide and sold out in just 12 months.

His second book; `Shall we tell the President’ was a swift thriller featuring a plan to assassinate Edward Kennedy, a sitting President of the United States. This too was a smashing bestseller acknowledged and sold worldwide. Jeffrey’s lucky charm was back. He Later went on to write and publish `Kane and Abel’; a story about two men from Poland, one from a poor background, and the other born into a rich family. Both meet at the top of the success ladder, overwhelmingly envious of each other, they plan on how to destroy each other for each to remain relevantly wealthy, and in control. Kane and Abel successfully sold well over 3 million copies in the UK and more copies also sold all over the world. It is one of his best published works. This was followed by The Prodigal Daughter, the sequel to Kane and Abel.

His first short stories collection; ` A Quiver Full of Arrows’ was an equal success receiving more great reception and positive reviews from the film industry. Notable bestsellers include; Honor Among Thieves- published in 1993 and was a worldwide best-seller. The Eleventh Commandment, a 1998 publication topped The Sunday Times best seller novel record for 24 weeks. A Prisoner of Birth also clinched the bestseller lists worldwide and stayed at the top 10 New York list for four weeks. Paths of Glory also made waves all over the world in 2009.

Jeffrey Archer Awards

Jeffrey’s seven-book saga; The Clifton Chronicles was well received and still continues to receive accolades the world over. His award-winning publication is The best-Kept Secret from the Clifton Chronicles series.

Jeffrey Archer Books into Movies

He later went on to write his experiences as a parliamentarian in his book First among Equals, which was an award-winning publication that was later televised into the series `Granada’. A Quiver Full of Arrows was a major critically acclaimed miniseries stories which saw three books dramatized into a TV series-Tales of the Unexpected for the Angelica TV series.


His all-time bestseller books are from the Clifton Chronicles; The Sins of the Father (March 2012), and the Best Kept Secret that was published a year later. Be Careful What You Wish For soon followed in March 2014 receiving triple fanfare in South Africa Australia and India as well as his Country the UK.

The Best Kept Secret is a story about Harry and Emma Clifton, and their children; Sebastian and an adopted daughter Jessica. Emma delves into academics and joins the Barrington business while Harry is a renowned author.

The Sins of the Father tells of a British soldier and his family. Britain proclaims war on Germany, Harry Clifton, hopes to escape from his forgotten family secrets.

He joins the Navy but his ship falls into the hands of the enemy- a German U-boat. Luckily, Harry doesn’t die in this tragic incidence, he, among many other sailors are saved by an American ship. Harry manages to escape his tangled past and begins a new life…or so he thinks.

Jeffrey Archer FAQs

Q: Where was Jeffrey Archer born?

A: The author Jeffrey Archer was born in City of London Maternity Hospital, and his family then moved him to Weston-super-Mare two weeks after his birth.

Q: What constituency did Jeffrey Archer Represent?

A: When the author Jeffrey Archer was a Member of Parliament, he represented the constituency of Louth between the years of 1969 and 1974.

Q: What is the first book written by Jeffrey Archer?

A: The novel Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less was written by Jeffrey Archer in 1974, and was published in 1976.