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Biography

Deborah Swift is a USA Today bestselling author who has written twelve historical novels to date. Her first novel, The Lady’s Slipper, set in 17th century England, was shortlisted for the Impress Prize, and her WW2 novel Past Encounters was a BookViral Millennium Award winner.

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Deborah enjoys discussing themes and issues in books, and most of her novels have been published in reading group editions. As well as adult fiction, Deborah has also published a young adult series, The Highway Trilogy. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Lancaster University and is a mentor to other writers through The History Quill. She enjoys teaching writing skills from her home in the North of England.

Deborah’s most recent novel is the World War Two drama The Lifeline set during the Nazi Occupation of Norway, and she is currently working on a series set in 17th century Italy.

Books

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Articles

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Writing History

Writing History

I’ve always been interested in untold stories of World War Two, especially stories from overlooked outposts, such as Jersey The Occupation and now Shetland The Lifeline. Although The Shetland Isles are a long way from the mainland it would be a mistake to think that the islanders of Shetland ...
Law and Order in the 17th century

Law and Order in the 17th century

The Role of the Constable In many of my 17th century novels, people fall foul of the law in one way or another, and so I found it fascinating to examine what was in place to keep the peace in this era before the Police Force. During the 17th century the responsibility for law and order fell on
Servants and Historical Fiction

Servants and Historical Fiction

In my life today I have no servants living in my house. The work done by servants in previous centuries is now done by machines, or automation has rendered it unnecessary. For a historical fiction writer the presence of servants in the house is a massive opportunity for drama and for ...
Sugar and Spice and all things Nice

Sugar and Spice and all things Nice

The concept of dieting would have been alien to our 17th century forbears. In those days, the plumper you were, the better. Plumpness indicated wealth and class, and women aspired to be plump and white, rather than thin and tanned as is the fashion now. The 17th Century was when sugar became a ...

Author Interviews

Deborah Swift

Deborah Swift

What prompted you to choose the period that you wrote your first book in?My first book, The Lady’s Slipper’is set in the 17th century, which remains a period I find endlessly fascinating. The novel explores the fate of a wild orchid, which is also functions in the book as a symbol for the land. I wanted to set the novel
Talking History

Talking History

Could you tell us about The Lifeline and why you set the novel in Norway during the occupation?The Lifeline is a WW2 story with two historical aspects; firstly the Norwegian teachers’ strike, and secondly, the Shetland Bus. The Norwegian teachers’ strike is a little-known example of effective passive resistance against ...