Author Jan Guillou was born in 1944 in Stockholm. He studied law for two years after finnishing school and after that he became a journalist for Fib/Aktuellt in 1966. In the beginning the magazine used to publish people's stories but after a while it more and more turned towards being an adult magazine. In 1970 he started working for the magazine Folket i Bild/Kulturfront where he uncoverd the IB-affair, that the government had been doing espoinage. The story made Jan famous.
Since then Jan has been the host of TV-shows and written over 40 books. Ten of them are about Carl Hamilton, a Swedish James Bond, which have all been turned into movies. Another really popular serie is the four books about the Knights Templar Arn Magnusson and his heirs. Only the two of the books have been turned into movies but they became really popular. The books acutally created a whole new tourist industry for the area where the books take place, in Västergötland. The story is about Arn and the love of his life, Cecilia. They are punished by the church for having sex before they got married and the fact that Arn had slept with Cecilia's sister. Therefor they must make penance for twenty years, he as a Knights Templar in Jerusalem, and she in convent. The story is fascinating and there has been a lot of research done for the story. Jan mixes facts with fiction in a very good way. There are lots of details about people and places that have excisted and that has been important both for Swedish history and world history. While reading you learn about Sweden's early history, how it really became a country.
Guillou's latest serie is about three Norwegian brothers and their lives from 1901 and onwards. I have not read these myself but listening to the story about Arn has made me really curious about his other books and this serie has been recomended to me by a friend who likes the same type of books as I do.
Jan's own publishing house Pirat Förlaget: http://www.piratforlaget.se/jan-guillou/fakta-om-jan-guillou/
Picture: Jan Guillou på Bok- och biblioteksmässan 2013.
By Albi Olsson
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