HEAVEN HAS NO GUNS by John Groves
An unusual, documentary-style novel, set against actual historical events
between 1982 and 2010, lightly disguised as science fiction.
It tells of two people, an Englishman and an American girl, who first meet and
fall in love during the economic recession of 1982 and find themselves facing
the harsh realities of peace, war and the politics between. Ambition, greed and
corruption form the political backdrop to a story of three decades along a
chain of three global recessions and the conquest of two nations, one employing
the most sophisticated weaponry of war, the other surreptitious, not a shot
The couple’s passionate affair has lasting spiritual and sexual dimensions, but suffers a
surprise and unwelcome intervention from a terrifying, apparently inanimate,
source outside normal experience.
Born in London’s East End in 1926, and later a survivor of the wartime Blitz there, the author
joined the United Kingdom Post Office at the age of fourteen.
Serving nearly four years in the Grenadier Guards, he returned to civilian life
and progressed through various Departments of Government, specialising in
information services, publicity and the media.
During a short sabbatical in Hollywood he worked for the Bank of America and
the General Telephone Company of California, later returning to the Post
Office, a qualified PR specialist in films and broadcasting. Liaising with
virtually every news and documentary programme on the air, from Blue Peter to Panorama, he also became, in the late 1960s and early 70s, Government media spokesman on
national broadcasting policy, much involved in the great new innovations of
colour television, Channel Four, Radio One and local radio, and also the
launching of the National Girobank. Accelerated promotion to Deputy Director of
Public Relations, Post Office, rounded off 40 years in public service. He wound
up as a professional PR consultant and City correspondent.
His first novel, The Carapace, appeared in 1991, followed by a controversial book of prose and poetry in a
wide-ranging environmental philosophy, Naked Heaven, Naked Earth. A paperback anthology, Poetry on Purpose, appeared in 1994, paving the way, in 1996, for a collection of seventy new
poems, The Chocolate Sword. The Learning Curve of Love, 100 new poems for the Millennium, completed the cycle in 1999.
The MCC at Lord’s gave special prominence to his work in their first anthology of cricket verse,
published by Methuen in 2004. His children’s storybook, Black Tongue: Pirate of the Spanish Main came out in 2007.