John James studied philosophy at St David's University College, Lampeter, and also read and completed an MA in psychology at Selwyn College, Cambridge. He became a psychologist for the Ministry of Defence, lecturing on the selection and training of air crews for the RAF at Brampton. In addition to writing he also worked as a teacher and later for the Scientific Civil Service working on aviation problems. He is known for writing four historical novels set in Roman and early medieval Britain and Europe. He is buried in the graveyard at Strata Florida Abbey in Wales.