Angela MacRae Shanks

Award-winning Historical Fiction Author


About Angela MacRae Shanks

Angela MacRae Shanks was born in Garmouth, a village near the mouth of the river Spey in north-east Scotland and still lives near here with her family and two cats. Her mother was born in Strathavon – a real place – and the maternal side of her family all belong to this remote and beautiful glen. This is a place close to Angela’s heart, an area she has been visiting since childhood. Here she first heard tales of the dramatic history of the area, its people and their struggles, and became fascinated by it. Growing up in Moray, a beautiful part of Scotland known as ‘malt whisky country’, a love of Scottish history soon burgeoned. In particular, the history of the county’s illicit past and the smuggling of uisge-beatha, the water of life, prompted the germ of an idea for a series of novels to take root. Her love of the natural world and the folklore of the Highlands, combined with her training in aromatherapy and natural therapies prompted a desire to weave herbal lore into her stories. Those who healed using plants and the wisdom of nature, usually women, were often condemned as witches, and she felt the need to explore this injustice. The Blood and the Barley, first in The Strathavon Saga, is what grew from all this.


Books by Angela MacRae Shanks