Farley, Christopher John (Christopher J. Farley)

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Farley, Christopher John (Christopher J. Farley)


Born in Kingston, Jamaica. Education: Harvard University, graduated, 1988.


Writer, editor, novelist, biographer, and journalist. USA Today, reporter; Time, music critic, writer, and editor.


My Favorite War (novel), Farrar, Straus & Giroux (New York, NY), 1996.

Aaliyah: More Than a Woman (biography), MTV Books/Pocket Books (New York, NY), 2001.

Introducing Halle Berry (biography), Pocket Books (New York, NY), 2002.

Kingston by Starlight (novel), Three Rivers Press (New York, NY), 2005.

Before the Legend: The Rise of Bob Marley (biography), Amistad (New York, NY), 2006.

Harvard Crimson and Harvard Lampoon, former editor; Wall Street Journal, editor.

Contributor to books, including The Vintage Book of War Fiction.


Writer, journalist, and biographer Christopher John Farley is the author of a number of biographical works covering celebrities such as actress Halle Berry, musician Bob Marley, and rhythm-and-blues singer Aaliyah. He is a magazine and newspaper journalist who has worked for Time, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal. Farley is also a novelist, whose debut work, Kingston by Starlight, is the fictionalized account of the life of notorious female pirate Anne Bonny, who disguised herself as a man and sailed with the equally infamous Calico Jack Rackham. The novel is narrated by Bonny as an older woman as she looks back over her active life of adventure and plunder. The child of a wealthy landowner in County Cork, Ireland, Bonny is an independent and athletic child. When her father's fortunes sour, however, he heads to America, leaving Bonny and her mother behind. They later set sail to America to search for him, but the ship encounters many perils. When Bonny arrives in America, she ends up alone in South Carolina. With few other options, but with a newly acquired love of the sea, Bonny tells of how she disguised herself as a man and traveled to the Bahamas to become a freebooter. Later, she meets swashbuckling pirate Rackham and joins the crew of his ship, the William. From there, Bonny's story becomes one of plunder, booty, seafaring, and chests of gold. In the course of her adventures, Rackham makes the fortunate discovery that Bonny is actually a woman, which leads to a romance between the two characters. Bonny also meets Mary Read, another woman who disguised herself to adventure among the swashbucklers. Booklist reviewer Jennifer Mattson called the novel "seaworthy, if not particularly fleet," and further commented that it will "gratify fans of maritime yarns." In Farley's novel, noted a Kirkus Reviews critic, "Absurdity rules the waves, justice is served and bonny Anne lives on to tell thee."



Booklist, May 1, 2005, Jennifer Mattson, review of Kingston by Starlight, p. 1568.

California Bookwatch, June, 2006, review of Before the Legend: The Rise of Bob Marley.

Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2005, review of Kingston by Starlight, p. 437.

New York Times, August 14, 2005, review of Kingston by Starlight.


Curled Up with a Good Book,http://www.curledup.com/ (December 3, 2006), Luan Gaines, review of Kingston by Starlight.

Huffington Post,http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ (December 3, 2006), biography of Christopher John Farley.

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