John Jakes Books

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John Jakes is a bestselling author that writes historical and speculative fiction. Born in 1932 in Chicago, Illinois, Jakes attended DePauw University, Greencastle, Indiana (Creative Writing), and Ohio State University (American Literature).

Order of Johnny Havoc Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Johnny Havoc 1960 Description / Buy
2 Havoc for Sale / Havoc Meets Zelda (Short Story) 1962 Description / Buy
3 Holiday for Havoc / And The Doll Who Had 'It' (Short Story) 1963 Description / Buy
4 Johnny Havoc and the Siren in Red / Making It Big 1968 Description / Buy

Order of Lou Largo Series with William Ard

# Read Title Published Details
1 Make Mine Mavis 1961 Description / Buy
2 And So to Bed 1962 Description / Buy
3 Give Me This Woman 1962 Description / Buy

Order of II Galaxy Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Planet Wizard 1969 Description / Buy
2 Tonight We Steal the Stars 1969 Description / Buy
3 The Wagered World 1969 Description / Buy

Order of Brak the Barbarian Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Brak the Barbarian 1968 Description / Buy
2 Brak vs. The Sorceress / Witch of the Four Winds 1969 Description / Buy
3 Brak vs. the Mark of the Demons 1969 Description / Buy
4 When the Idols Walked (Short Story) 1978 Description / Buy
5 The Fortunes of Brak 1985 Description / Buy

Order of Gavin Black Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Witch of the Dark Gate 1972 Description / Buy

Order of Kent Family Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Bastard 1974 Description / Buy
2 The Rebels 1975 Description / Buy
3 The Seekers 1975 Description / Buy
4 The Furies 1976 Description / Buy
5 The Titans 1976 Description / Buy
6 The Warriors 1977 Description / Buy
7 The Lawless 1978 Description / Buy
8 The Americans 1979 Description / Buy

Order of Planet of the Apes Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Planet of the Apes ( By: Pierre Boulle, Xan Fielding) 1963 Description / Buy
2 Beneath The Planet of The Apes (Short Story) ( By: Michael Avallone) 1970 Description / Buy
3 Escape from the Planet of the Apes ( By: Jerry Pournelle) 1973 Description / Buy
4 Conquest of the Planet of the Apes 1974 Description / Buy
5 Planet of the Apes Movie Novelization ( By: William T. Quick) 2001 Description / Buy

Order of North and South Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 North and South 1982 Description / Buy
2 Love and War 1984 Description / Buy
3 Heaven and Hell 1987 Description / Buy

Order of The Crown Family Saga Series

# Read Title Published Details
1 Homeland 1993 Description / Buy
2 American Dreams 1998 Description / Buy

Order of John Jakes Standalone Novels

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Texans Ride North 1952 Description / Buy
2 Wear a Fast Gun 1952 Description / Buy
3 The Devil Has Four Faces 1958 Description / Buy
4 The Seventh Man 1958 Description / Buy
5 I, Barbarian 1959 Description / Buy
6 The Imposter 1959 Description / Buy
7 Strike the Black Flag 1961 Description / Buy
8 Veils of Salome 1962 Description / Buy
9 Sir Scoundrel 1962 Description / Buy
10 The Man from Cannae 1963 Description / Buy
11 G. I. Girls 1963 Description / Buy
12 Traitors' Legion 1963 Description / Buy
13 Arena 1963 Description / Buy
14 Secrets of Stardeep 1969 Description / Buy
15 The Asylum World 1969 Description / Buy
16 The Last Magicians 1969 Description / Buy
17 The Hybrid 1969 Description / Buy
18 Six-Gun Planet 1970 Description / Buy
19 Black in Time 1970 Description / Buy
20 Monte Cristo #99 1970 Description / Buy
21 The Star Virus/Mask of Chaos 1970 Description / Buy
22 Time Gate (Short Story) 1972 Description / Buy
23 Mention My Name in Atlantis (Short Story) 1972 Description / Buy
24 On Wheels 1973 Description / Buy
25 Fortune's Whirlwind 1975 Description / Buy
26 To an Unknown Shore 1975 Description / Buy
27 King's Crusader 1977 Description / Buy
28 A Night for Treason 1978 Description / Buy
29 Excalibur! ( With: Gil Kane) 1980 Description / Buy
30 California Gold 1989 Description / Buy
31 On Secret Service 2000 Description / Buy
32 The Bold Frontier 2001 Description / Buy
33 Charleston 2002 Description / Buy
34 Savannah, or A Gift for Mr. Lincoln / Savannah Christmas 2004 Description / Buy
35 The Gods of Newport 2006 Description / Buy

Order of John Jakes Short Story Collections

# Read Title Published Details
1 The Best of John Jakes 1977 Description / Buy
2 The Best Western Stories of John Jakes 1991 Description / Buy

Order of John Jakes Plays

# Read Title Published Details
1 Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol 1999 Description / Buy

Order of John Jakes Non-Fiction Books

# Read Title Published Details
1 Famous Firsts in Sports (Short Story) 1967 Description / Buy
2 Great Women Reporters 1969 Description / Buy
3 Mohawk: The Life of Joseph Brant 1969 Description / Buy

John Jakes Anthologies

# Read Title Published Details
1 Swords Against Tomorrow 1970 Description / Buy
2 Six Science Fiction Plays 1975 Description / Buy
3 Deadly Arts 1985 Description / Buy
4 Tales of Mystery 1986 Description / Buy
5 New Trails: Twenty-Three Original Stories 1994 Description / Buy
6 Hollywood Fantasies: Ten Surreal Visions of Tinsel Town 1997 Description / Buy
7 A Century of Great Western Stories 2001 Description / Buy
8 The Spider Chronicles 2007 Description / Buy
9 Science Fiction Gems, Vol. One 2011 Description / Buy
10 Science Fiction Gems, Volume 9 2015 Description / Buy
Print: Print PDF

Jakes blames his parents for nurturing his love of books and the library. That passion eventually paid off. The author went on to write dozens of books and hundreds of short stories in various genres, including mystery, science fiction, and children’s literature.

During the height of his career, some people theorized that John Jakes was actually a pen name encompassing multiple authors. This was the only way they could explain Jakes’s prolific production rate.

But that theory was never proven. Success did not come overnight. The author started publishing his stories in high school. As a young adult, Jakes occupied various positions in advertising. Although his work kept him busy, the author found opportunities to experiment with fiction.

He remained in relative obscurity for two decades. But then the ‘American Bicentennial’ stories came along and made the author a star. The positive reception to the series encouraged Jakes to become a full-time writer.

He would often downplay the quality of his work, arguing that he was simply doing his best. But critics praised the author for his natural storytelling abilities, taking note of the careful plotting and extensive historical research.

No matter what he said, critics refused to dismiss him as an ordinary science fiction writer.
Interestingly enough, Jakes almost gave up on his writing dreams. Even though readers liked his earlier works, the income from his publishing efforts was too low to justify the hours he spent writing.

Jakes remembers writing a novelization for ‘Planet of the Apes’ and making fifteen hundred dollars. The experience made him bitter, and he wondered whether he had wasted his life by pursuing fiction for the last 20 years.

Fortunately, Lyle Kenyon Engel had tasked Don Moffitt with writing a series of novels that would follow the same family over several generations. The offer was fortunate because Don was unavailable, so he recommended Jakes.

Lyle reviewed Don’s writing efforts, taking note of the solid research and believable characters. It was enough to convince him to offer Jakes the job. The series initially consisted of five books.

But the story’s popularity compelled Lyle to extend the author’s contract. If Lyle had his way, he would have kept the series going indefinitely. But Jakes refused because he wanted to leave the audience wanting more.

John Jakes Awards

Jakes’ accolades include Ohioana Book, Career Achievement, Western Heritage Literature, Professional Achievement, and Porgie Awards.

John Jakes Books Into Movies

‘The Bastard,’ ‘North and South,’ ‘The Seekers,’ and ‘The Rebels’ received television adaptations.

Best John Jakes Books

The author has written fiction under the ‘Jay Scotland’ pen name. His books have sold tens of millions of copies. Jakes’ best novels include:

North and South: ‘North and South’ follows George and Orry. George is the child of wealthy ironworkers. When readers first meet him, George is traveling to the US Military Academy.

Along the way, he encounters Orry, another son of a wealthy family. George and Orry strike up a friendship after joining forces to fend off several aggressors. Later on, they are forced to test their mettle against Elkanah Bent, a sadistic upperclassman.

Eventually, the story expands to include the pair’s friends and family, including George’s brothers, abolitionist sister, and Orry’s siblings.

‘North and South’ is the first book in the ‘North and South’ series. At 800 pages, it is pretty long, but only because it chronicles three generations of two American dynasties.

The Bastards: Phillipe knew what he was owed. After all, he was the son of the Duke of Kentland. Unfortunately for Phillipe, he was an illegitimate child, and no one recognized his claim.

Having been stripped of his birthright, Phillipe was forced to start afresh. He cast his old life aside and went to the New World to start over. Unfortunately, America was not the paradise he expected.

For all its opportunities, the colony was rapidly approaching a tipping point, and now, Phillipe had a decision to make. Unexpected circumstances would soon test his allegiances.
‘The Bastard’ is the first novel in the Kent Family series.

When Does The Next John Jakes book come out?

John Jakes doesn't seem to have an upcoming book. Their newest book is The Gods of Newport and was released on November, 7th 2006.

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