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John Van der Kiste was born in Wendover, Buckinghamshire. A former library assistant, he has published over seventy books, including historical and royal biographies covering the Stuart, Georgian and Victorian eras, and European dynasties, including Queen Victoria’s ChildrenKaiser Wilhelm IIEmperor Francis JosephKings of the HellenesCrowns in a Changing World; titles on contemporary rock music, including biographies of Jeff Lynne and ELO, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Steve Winwood, Steeleye Span and Lindisfarne; local history, true crime, fiction and plays. He has reviewed books and records for national, local and independent publications, contributed to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and Guinness Rockopaedia, and was co-consultant for the BBC TV documentary The Kingthe Kaiser and the Tsar. He lives in Devon and his recreations include reading, music and painting.