Wilbur Addison Smith (born January 9, 1933 in Broken Hill, Northern Rhodesia, now Kabwe, Zambia) is a best-selling novelist currently residing in London. His writings include 16th and 17th century tales about the founding of the southern territories of Africa and the subsequent adventures and international intrigues relevant to these settlements. His books often fall into one of three series. These works of partial fiction help to explain the rise and historical influence of the Dutch and English whites in southern Africa that eventually claimed this diamond and gold rich and disputed territory as home.
As a baby, he was sick with cerebral malaria for ten days, but made a full recovery. He grew up on a cattle ranch and spent his childhood hunting and hiking. His mother gave him novels of escape and excitement, which piqued his interest in fiction; however, his father dissuaded him from pursuing writing.
After education at Cordwalles Preparatory School, Michaelhouse in Natal and Rhodes University, in the Eastern Cape of South Africa, he became a journalist, writing about social conditions in South Africa, but his father's advice to "Get a real job" prompted him to resentfully become a tax accountant.
He published his first novel, When the Lion Feeds, in 1964, written while he worked for Salisbury Inland Revenue. The book gained a film deal and its success encouraged him to become a full-time writer. His publisher and later agent, Charles Pick, gave him advice he never forgot: "Write for yourself, and write about what you know best."
He married and had two children after he qualified as a Chartered Accountant. The marriage ended in divorce at the age of twenty four. He married again following the publication of his first novel, this too ended in divorce. He married Danielle Thomas in 1971, dedicating his books to her until her death in 1999. He married Mokhiniso Rakhimova, from Tadjikistan, in May 2000.
He states that Africa is his major inspiration, and currently he has over 30 novels published. Smith now lives in London, but avows an abiding concern for the peoples and wildlife of his native continent.
In 2002, Wilbur Smith was granted the Inaugural Sport Shooting Ambassador Award by the World Forum on the Future of Sport Shooting Activities.
A historical fiction series based in a large part on Pharaoh Thutmose III's time along with his story and that of his stepmother Hatshepsut through the eyes of his mother's vizier Senemut mixing in elements of the Hyskos' domination and eventual overthrow.
The Seventh Scroll
The Seventh Scroll is set to modern times, but reflects the other three through archeological discoveries.