Reina James (born 1947) is a British author. She has written two novels, the first of which won the Society of Authors’ McKitterick Prize in 2007.

Early life

James was born in 1947, shortly after her parents arrived in the UK from South Africa. Her father was the actor Sid James. During her teenage years she played in a folk group before marrying and starting a family.[1][2] In her late 20s she appeared in the stage play John, Paul, George, Ringo … and Bert by Willy Russell, and later appeared in Russell's musical Blood Brothers.[1]

Writing career

Having worked since the 1980s as an astrological counsellor,[3] James published her first novel, This Time of Dying in 2007, which won the Society of Authors’ McKitterick Prize, awarded for the best first novel by a writer over the age of 40.[1] Her second novel, The Old Joke, was published in 2009.[1][4]


James has been married to Mike Reinstein, a musician, since 1991, and has one son and one grandchild.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e Jacobs, Gerald (29 April 2009). "Interview: Reina James". The Jewish Chronicle. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  2. ^ James, Reina (11 April 2009). "'The marriage itself is a blank'". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  3. ^ Grant, Linda (28 June 2007). "Deathly Prose". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  4. ^ Harding, John (24 April 2009). "The Old Joke". Daily Mail. Retrieved 20 April 2011.