Juan Eslava Galán

Juan Eslava Galán was born in the municipality of Arjona (Jaén) in 1948. He graduated in English Philology from the University of Granada and received his PhD in Letters with his thesis on Polyorcetics and medieval fortification in the kingdom of Jaén, where he analyzes the history of the kingdom of Jaén -especially from the Castilian conquest- and studies the various justifications and typologies of the fortresses, towers, castles and walls of the province.

The author expanded his studies in the United Kingdom, where he lived in Bristol and Lichfield, and was a student and assistant professor at Aston University, Birmingham.

Upon his return to Spain, he won the exams for the Chair of English for Secondary Education and was a high school teacher for thirty years, a work that he combined with the writing of novels and essays on historical topics.

The historical knowledge acquired together with the extensive academic research carried out make Eslava Galán a rigorous and excellent disseminator of History. Without a doubt, a prolific author who has published hundreds of articles in magazines, diverse collaborations in collective works and numerous novels and tests.

His connection with Jaén is not only given by his birth in Arjona, but also by this continuing research work in the province that he has been carrying out throughout his career, which makes him a great ambassador for Arjona and Jaén.

Juan Eslava Galán collaborates with the locality whenever it is required, either in the form of a literary gift with his novels or presentations or in the form of a contribution of patrimonial assets, such as the templar tombstone or the stone of wishes, donated by the author himself. In November 2016, the City Council of Arjona awarded him the Gold Medal of the City.

The commitment to his land led him to transfer in 2012 more than 8,000 documents from his personal archive to the Institute of Studies of Jaén, of which he is a member, constituting an extraordinary tool for approaching the cultural and historical heritage of the province of Jaén.

Literary Production of Juan Eslava Galán

Juan Eslava Galán cultivates the most diverse literary facets among which he stands out as a novelist (in some of them he uses the pseudonym of Nicholas Wilcox), essayist, historian and columnist.

His bibliography is immense as evidenced by his fruitful work, with almost a hundred magazine articles, around a dozen collaborations in collective works and almost two hundred books, which makes him a truly prolific author.

As a narrator, he opts for the historical novel, a genre that earned him general recognition when he obtained the Planeta Award in 1987 for his work In Search of the Unicorn. He has also turned part of his literary activity into works of historical dissemination, achieving a huge impact with the series History for Skeptics. Likewise, a good part of his literary production has been based on the province of Jaén, being the case of his novels The Mule, Woolf King, The Templar and Solomon´s Table or The Templar Tombstone.


– Planeta Award(1987) for In Search of the Unicorn.
– Chianti Ruffino Award– Antico Fattore 1988 for In Search of the Unicorntranslated to Italian

  • Fernando Lara Award (1998) for Señorita.
  • – Andalusian Critics Award (1998) for Señorita.
  • – Ateneo de Sevilla Award (1994) for The Restrained Hidalgo.
  • – Primavera de Novela Award (2015) for Mysterious Murder at Cervantes’s House.

Main Literary Productions:

• The conquest of America told for skeptics, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galán 2019.

• Slavic Encyclopedia. Everything (or almost everything) you need to know to be reasonably cultured, Booket, Juan Eslava Galán 2019.

• The Prado Family. A casual and surprising walk through the Museum of the Austrias and the Bourbons, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galán 2018.

• The Russian Revolution told for skeptics, Booket, Juan Eslava Galán 2018.

• History of Spain told for skeptics, Booket, Juan Eslava Galán 2016.

• The decade that took our breath away, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galán 2016.

• The Second World War told for skeptics, Booket, Juan Eslava Galán, 2016.

• Lust, Círculo de Lectores, Juan Eslava Galán. 2016.

• Mysterious Murder at Cervantes’s House. Planeta, 2015. (Primavera de Novela Award).

• The Second World War told for skeptics, historical disclosure, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galan 2015.

• The first world war told for skeptics, historical disclosure, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galan 2014.

• History of the world told for skeptics, Booket, Juan Eslava Galán 2014.

• No Fuss Cooking, culinary dissemination, Planeta, Juan Eslava Galan-Diana Eslava 2013.

  • 50 stamps of the history of Spain, essay, Círculo de Lectores, 2013.
  • • The Cities of La Bética, essay, José Manuel Lara Foundation, 2012.
  • • History of the world told for skeptics, essay, Planeta, 2012.
  • • Late Passions of the Gentleman Almafiera, novel, Planeta, 2012.
  • The decade that took our breath away, Planeta, 2011.
  • • Templars, grails, black virgins and other enigmas of History, Planeta, 2011.
  • •Homo Erectus, Planeta, 2011.

•Wolf King, Planeta, 2010.

•From espadrille to Seat 600 , Planeta, 2010.

• Catholicism explained to the sheep, Planeta, 2009.

• 1000 places to see in Spain at least once in a lifetime, Martínez Roca, 2009.

• Caliphs, warriors, slaves and eunuchs. The Moors in Spain, S.L.U. Espasa Libros, 2008.

• The years of fear, Planeta, 2008.

• The Deciphered Templar Tombstone, Planeta, 2008.

• The Mercenary of Granada, Booket, 2006.

• Unusual and Mysterious Spain, Planeta, 2006.

• Trip to the scenes of Captain Alatriste, El País Aguilar, 2006.

• Trip to the coast of the whales, Imagine Ediciones, 2006.

• A history of the civil war that no one will like, Planeta, 2005.

• Sonnets, Jaén City Council, 2005.

• The disputed paradise. Route of the castles and the battles, essay, Aguilar Guides, 2003.

•The Iberians. The Spanish as we were, Martínez Roca, 2004.

• The Catholic Monarchs, Planeta, 2004.

• The Mule, Planeta, 2003.

• The Death of the Grandmother, Tempora, 2003.

• Saints and Sinners. Album of memories of the Spaniards of the 20th century, essay, Planeta, 2002.

• A Garden Among Olive Trees (The routes of the olive tree in Spain. Masaru in the Olivar III), essay, RBA Libros, 2002.

• The routes of the olive tree in Andalusia (Masaru en el Olivar II), José Manuel Lara Foundation, 2001.

•Dragon´s Teeth, S.L. Devir Contenidos, 2001. • The castles of Jaén, essay, University of Jaén, 1999.

• The Routes of the Olive Tree in Jaén (Masaru en el Olivar I), Provincial Council of Jaén, 1999.

  • A Different Jaén, Ediciones Osuna, 1999. • School and prisons of Vicentito González, El Aleph 1999.
  • • Señorita, Planeta, 1998.

• Guzzlers and Starving. Spaniards eating and fasting through history, Plaza & Janés, 1997.

  • The fraud of the Shroud and the relics of Christ, Planeta, 1997.
  • • The Spain of 98. The end of an era, EDAF, 1997.
  • • Love and sex in ancient Greece, Today’s Topics, 1997.
  • • The Spain of Liberties, Espasa, 1997.

• Coitus Interruptus, Planeta, 1997.

• Love Life in Rome, Today’s Topics, 1996.

• The Life and Times of the Catholic Monarchs, Planeta, 1996.

• Julius Caesar, the Man Who Could Reign, Planeta, 1995.

  • History of Spain told for skeptics, essay, Planeta, 1995 (after it has made updated editions).
  • • Statio Orbis (The great event), Planeta, 1995.
  • • The Restrained Gentleman, Planeta, 1994.
  • • The Sex of Our Parents, Planet, 1993.
  • • Cleopatra, the Serpent of the Nile, Booket, 1993.
  • • The Templars and Other Medieval Enigmas, Essay, Planeta, 1992.
  • • Histories of the Inquisition, Planeta, 1992.
  • • Secret History of Sex in Spain, Temas de Hoy, 1992.
  • • The Enigma of Columbus and the Discoveries of America, Planeta, 1992.
  • • Tobías’s Trip, Planeta De Agostini, 1992.
  • • Tartessos and Other Enigmas of History, Planeta, 1991.
  • • Great Battles in the History of Spain, Planeta, 1990.
  • • Executioners and Torturers, Temas de Hoy, 1990.
  • • Guadalquivir, Planeta, 1990.
  • • Mercedes del Obispo and other Edifying stories, Diputación Provincial de Jaén, 1990.
  • • Cruel tales, University of Granada, 1990.
  • • Your masterful love, Port Royal Ediciones, 1990.
  • • Castles and walls of the Kingdom of Jaén, Riquelme and Vargas, 1989. • Yo, Nerón, 1989.
  • • Catedral, Planeta, 1989.
  • • Rome of the Caesars, Planeta, 1988.
  • • Yo, Aníbal, Planeta, 1988.
  • • The enigma of Solomon’s Table, Martínez Roca, 1987.
  • • In Search of the Unicorn, Planeta, 1987.
  • • Five Spanish Tretises on Alchemy, Tecnos, 1986.
  • • Legends of the Castles of Jaén, Ediciones Osuna, 1982.
  • • The Legend of theLizard of Malena and the Myths of the Dragon, Spanish Confederation of Savings Banks, 1981.
  • • Friary Grange School. Study of a Comprehensive English School, University of Granada, 1978.
  • • Jofra, Manuela Plaza Minaya, 1975.
  • Novels under the pen name Nicholas Wilcox:
  • • The Deciphered Templar Tombstone, Planeta, 2008.
  • • The Templars and Solomon’s Table, Martínez Roca Editions, 2004.
  • • God´s Blood, Planeta, 2002.
  • • The trumpets of Jericó, Planeta, 2002.
  • • The false Pilgrims, Planeta, 2000. •
  • The Templar tTombstone, Planeta, 1996.