Angus-based James Robertson has made a name for himself translating books for children and young people into Scots, but is perhaps best known for his short stories, poetry and novels. The Testament of Gideon Mack was published in 2006 and longlisted for the year’s Booker Prize. It recounts a memoir of a Church of Scotland minister who happens not to believe in God or an afterlife until a series of strange events forces him to reconsider his double-life. Robertson has authored a website that continues the book’s exploration of the nature of truth, belief and honesty. His 2010 book, And the Land Lay Still, which received the Saltire Society Scottish Book of the Year award, is a panoramic novel charting half a century of social and political change in Scotland from the end of the Second World War to the re-establishment of the Scottish Parliament. With a PhD from Edinburgh University on the novels of Walter Scott, Robertson is very conscious of the Scottish literary tradition, and his work often references themes found in Scott, Hogg, Stevenson, Fergusson and others.
Robertson has been interviewed in the Scotsman and Books from Scotland.