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My Sitemap

Alphabetical Sitemap

  • Thrillers, thriller novels, espionage or spy novels - I write them, and I read them. Find out what makes a good thriller, dig into the spy novels genre. My favourite reads, video trailers
  • James Marinero's Books
  • This topical techno thriller blends political intrigue with suspense and gutsy action. Weapons of mass destruction are in Islamist terrorist hands and their outrageous demands throw world governments into confusion. With much of the story based on fact blended with North Korean and Iranian involvement, this is a chilling portrayal of a possible nightmare future.
  • James Marinero's sequel to Gate of Tears. Baldwin continues his voyage, into the Mediterranean, but cannot stay out of trouble. Assassination, a massive terrorist attack and two dangerous women combine to make this a real page-turner!
  • A near-future techno-thriller exploring the changing world order with the political, military and industrial emergence of China as the world's leading superpower. With piracy and gold fever, much of the story is set in the volatile Red Sea region, and takes a fascinating look at what might be just around the corner...
  • Susan's brother, by James Marinero, is closely based on a true story about a dyslexic child's battle through mental institutions in the 1950's, a struggle to be understood, a struggle to understand a world where he was, to his family, unwanted and unloved.
  • Gallery of characters from James Marinero's novels, including Steve Baldwin and Maruska Pavkovic.
  • Gallery and bio of Steve Baldwin, hero of 'Gate of Tears'
  • Gallery of Ellie Williams pics.
  • Data on Maruska Pavkovic, including CV and surveillance pics
  • James Marinero's research articles for his novels.
  • An overview of the organisation of Chinese internet warfare activities.
  • External (proximal) attacks on the RSA cypher have been achieved, with cracking of the 1024 bit private key being achieved in hours. How?
  • James Marinero military articles which he writes as the research basis for his novels.
  • An overview of the Israeli Defence Force Navy - history, size, theatres and main bases, future outlook. How will its stance change in view of future threats?
  • An overview of the world aircraft carrier fleet - country, name, configuration, tonnage, aircraft.
  • Aircraft carriers - the basics in a summary article. Types, configurations, entry barriers to the club. Is their future assured?
  • The new Chinese aircraft carrier Shi Lang has started her sea trials. This is causing nervousness in world naval circles and in Far East goverments. Taiwan is developing a new carrier-busting missile. What's going on?
  • James Marinero politics articles which he writes as the research basis for his novels.
  • An overview of the organisation of Chinese internet warfare activities.
  • A brief history of patents as a concept, the development of patent law and intellectual property rights
  • James Marinero science articles which he writes as the research basis for his novels.
  • An overview of the Sicilian Channel - Importance, History and Formation.
  • Why go cruising in North Africa? If you own a yacht and are considering sailing in the Mediterranean, then why not cruise the North African coast? Yes, it has some challenges, but if you've cruised the Spanish coast and the Balearics, you will know that coast has its challenges too - for example finding a mooring in the summer months. It is quite different in North Africa.
  • A collection of pictures accumulated when researching background for my novels.
  • Complete book covers of James's work.
  • All about thriller novels - the genre and sub genres, my favourites, video trailers and the like. What are thriller novels? Wikipaedia includes 10 sub-categories (though I prefer the term sub-genre), and I think that the definition they use, as of today, is too specific.
  • My pick of the best thrillers - books I've actually read, not a compilation of others' lists compiled again from others' lists. Spy novels figure strongly, but why? Is deceitr and duplicity an important element?
  • How to choose a thriller novel: Thriller novels have supplied suspense, exhilaration, and enjoyment to readers since the first beginnings of the genre. Here are some guidelines to finding the ones you will like. The skill of the thriller writer is in working the levers of the reader’s emotions and imagination to ratchet up the levels of tension and anticipation, laying false trails and building suspense. Not all writers are suitably skilled. Then, for me, a good thriller should inform as well as entertain and so the best thrillers will have been built around a lot of research – maybe into technology, culture or locations. They very best will have a fair bit of detail about all three, and other aspects, too.
  • What makes thriller novels? For that matter, what is a thriller novel? James Marinero speculates on this eclectic genre, with at least eight sub-genres. Is it writing that gets the heart rate up, that gives you nightmares? Does it have to be gory? Does a good thriller stop you sleeping? My preferred reading in the thriller novels genre is that which might come in several flavours: action thriller, espionage thriller, technothriller, political thriller. Generally, they do not involve horror, the occult, crime or mystery fiction in the conventional sense, neither do they necessarily involve physical violence (though there are few that do not). Suspense there should be, aplenty, and there will be crimes, for sure. But thrills? Gut wrenching fright? I guess that comes down to how the individual reader ‘gets their thrills’. It’s an interesting word to apply, but in this genre for me it means that you cannot put down a book because the story is so enagaging – it’s 2 am and you have to work the next day…go on, just one more chapter!
  • Thriller novels have supplied suspense, exhilaration, and enjoyment to readers since the first beginnings of the genre. What are the origins, structures and devices used in this great literary tradition? The precursors of thriller novels originated with the writers of ancient civilizations such as the Greeks or Persians. For example, the Odyssey in Greek and the Mahabharata in Sanskrit were, arguably created using narrative structures still shown in today's thriller novels. Originating in the 10th Century (so research suggests and translated by Sir Richard Burton in the 19th Century), 'One Thousand and One Nights' (aka The Arabian Nights) plots the first ever detective thriller as a story entitled as “The Three Apples”.
  • Who is the best thriller books author? It's a tough one, I know - here are some suggestions, and a chance for you to have your say. The genre is very wide, and the best plots are intense and deeply interwoven.
  • Many of the best thriller novels are so-called spy novels. What are the secrets of the best spy novels when target readers are relatively sophisticated and used to coping with complex plots? The very best thriller novels will include a broad spectrum of these topics, with one, or perhaps two, explored in great depth as the core of the work. Spy novels are a difficult genre in which to write well, because they usually involve characters of high intellect. Developing those characters, their motivations, thought processes and associated plots requires a high degree of skill, and dare I say, intellect, on the part of the author.
  • An index to my favourite action thriller novels. Is it writing that gets the heart rate up, that gives you nightmares? Does it have to be gory? Does a good thriller stop you sleeping? Do you like your action continuous or continual?
  • The Bourne Identity - a favourite amongst my action thriller novels. Is it the writing that gets the heart rate up, that gives you nightmares? Does it have to be gory? Does a good thriller stop you sleeping? Non stop action - is that important?
  • Do some drama novels (frequently categorised as fiction novels) really qualify as thriller novels. It depends...Is it writing that gets the heart rate up? Does a good thriller stop you sleeping? A great thriller should give you vivid nightmares.
  • Thriller or not? I think it qualifies, because for me, suspense provides a thrill. Does a good thriller stop you sleeping or give you nightmares? It doesn't have to be gory, just frightening.
  • An index to my favourite espionage thriller novels. Spy craft and subterfuge, duplicity and double dealing - lying, deceiving, planning, cheating, executing. All ingredients of the best spy novels.
  • The best spy novels as compiled by James Marinero, presenting a spectrum of this entertaining thriller novel sub-genre. What are the best and can they be set at any time. Espionage has been prevalent through the eons of man's existence.
  • Arguably the first of modern espionage thriller novels was ‘Riddle of the Sands’, 1903. It laid the ground with plot devices for modern thrillers. The true story was even stranger than fiction, and the Kaiser caught us napping.
  • Spy craft and subterfuge, duplicity and double dealing - lying, deceiving, planning, cheating, executing. All ingredients of the classic espionage novel. Video Trailer of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy directed by Tomas Alfredson, with an all star British cast including John Hurt, Colin Firth, Benedict Cumberbatch, Gary Oldman and Kathy Burke.
  • One of Len Deighton's best. Video Trailer of The Ipcress File - the Michael Caine version, with Sue Looyd and Gordon Jackson. Spy craft and subterfuge, duplicity and double dealing - lying, deceiving, planning, cheating, executing. All ingredients of the classic espionage novel.
  • An index to my favourite poltical thriller novels. Superpower politics is an eternal subject for thriller writers. First it was Russia, the next one will be China. House of Cards is also a great political thriller, with a great style where the main character directly addresses the reader in asides.
  • The book that Reagan read - maybe the only one? I don't know, but this is a master expostion of the techno-thriller. Certainly, for most afficionados of thriller novels, this ranks up there with Day of the Jackal. There's a Video Trailer too.
  • Supernatural thriller novels involve the occult, supernatural phenomena, and life beyond the grave (or returning from the grave - as zombies do).
  • A review Haunting of Hill House - a classic of the supernatural sub-genre of thriller novels. This review was written decades after I read it, and it is still vivid in my mind. How the author manipulates one's imagination and fear is a tour de force.
  • Sixth Sense - a great example of supernatural thriller writing with the twist right at the end. One of Bruce Willis's better films.
  • Index of Reviews of James Marinero's Books
  • Can your readers suspend disbelief? Index of James Marinero articles on writing fiction, faction, science fiction v science faction.
  • Can your readers suspend disbelief? The techno thriller novel genre - is it science fiction or science faction? Here I’m not going to discuss literary fiction – such as written by Ian McKeown or V S Naipaul; I’m discussing thrillers, specifically techno-thriller novels. Now, you might think immediately of Tom Clancy, or maybe Craig Thomas, but Patricia Cornwell is also, to me, a techno-thriller author. When I read Cornwell, I believe pretty much everything – she was a medical examiner and knows bodies inside out. Clancy or Thomas though? Certainly their work is plausible, even when Thomas invented a new Russian plane, in Firefox, it was fairly credible to me.
  • If you are learning how to write novels, find out why fact checking matters. James Marinero explains why an author can lose readers if facts are not checked.
  • Tips for those who are learning how to write novels - a view from someone who learned the hard way (and still learning), or, 'what they don't teach you in writing school'.
  • Al Quaeda has been a gift to novelists, with countless thriller novels being written on the topic since 2001. Before that it was the Cold War. What will the next ‘big theme’ be? China – the Chinese navy, China’s financial tentacles and industrial might – the author argues persuasively that this will be the next big theme for thriller writers. So, where will the next rich seam come from for techno thriller and regular thriller writers? Well, I’m convinced that it is the rapid emergence of China as a financial, industrial and outward facing military power. Chinese emergence is being driven from the bottom up by a vast population with rapidly rising expectations, ingenuity and a hunger – both literal and metaphorical. The only way that this internal pressure can be contained is to let it out, gradually. The lid of the kettle that is the Chinese Communist Party wants to stay firmly on top, so other ways have to be found to relieve that internal pressure.
  • Good location research, preferably on-the-spot, is essential if an author of spy novels is to capture the feel of a location and convey a sense of place. This is about my research in North Africa. I have written elsewhere about the importance of fact checking. It tends to be undertaken mainly at the editing stage. Of course, if a book’s plot relies heavily on the accuracy of a particular fact, then the checking needs to be done very early on in the writing process. Good location research, preferably on-the-spot, is essential too, if an author of spy novels (or other thrillers for that matter) is to capture the feel of a location and write with authority about that place.
  • Technothriller novels and thriller novels - how to develop the plot, or more specifically, how I do it. Do you start out with a central idea, and then map it and develop it from there, with the structure clear in your mind, or on paper, before you start writing? Or, do you have another approach? Many writers let the story flow, and that’s what I’ve learned to do, starting from one central idea (the fesible extraction of gold from seawater). Of course, that way, you don’t know how it will end up, other than the fact that you have to keep alive the main character (or not)!
  • Can writers of thriller novels learn from film directors? Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino) has an unusual way of dealing with timelines (and it’s not time travel). Does the serial disconnect of the plot scenes (apart from the typical title scene peek) affect the viewer’s enjoyment, and would it work in print? Although the structure has surely been tried already, this article considers the possibilities and the likely impact for e-readers. So, what can thriller authors learn? Would the patchwork quilt approach work? Obviously, killing off a main character in the middle might remove some of the interest, but then a reader will know that there’s a reason the author has structured it in that way. I’m sure that the quilt approach (with temporal disconnects) has been tried, though I don’t recall reading a book structured in that way.
  • How do you extend your vocabulary? How can you exercise your brain whilst doing so, and does it work? Find out how puzzles can help.
  • The story of a book of short stories, and what the best collections deliver. What's the history of a book, can an e-reader ever capture that mystery of history? I doubt it. Here's what's special about mine.
  • Testimonials from clients for whom I have written and edited books.
  • James Marinero's blog
  • Index of my favourite poetry.
  • James Marinero Interviews, James Marinero Podcasts - index page
  • An interview and podcast with Steve Baldwin, hero and main character in 'Gate of Tears'. Find out what he knows of Maruska Pavkovic.
  • Videos and video booktrailers from James Marinero
  • The first video trailer for the spy novel 'Gate of Tears' - 'If She's Still Alive'
  • Video trailer for James Marinero's thriller novel 'Sicilian Channel'
  • How I made a great video trailer for 'Sicilian Channel' - storyboard, material sources,tools, scripting, voiceover, music, edting.
  • Index of James Marinero Press Releases
  • Press Rrelease August 16,2011. James Marinero signs deal to write 'Susan's Brother', based on the life of Chris Robinson. Abused and institutionalised as a child in an adult mental hospital, Chris fights against all the odds to become a successful professional and counsellor. Susan's Brother will be published by eZeeBooks UK in Spring 2012.
  • James Marinero - lending libraries for marketing books
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  • A list of the books I have read, the books that have shaped the way I write and what I seek out when I want a bit of relaxation, self improvement or mind-stretching. These are the ones I can remember