AUTHOR and journalist Michael Jacobs has lost his short battle with cancer of the kidney which was only diagnosed in September. He passed away in a London hospital yesterday evening (January 10) aged just 61.

He wrote extensively about life in Andalucia in his books and in the UK press. These include a celebrated book on the Alhambra and his fabulous tome Factory of Light: Tales from my Andalucian Village (2004) about life in rural Jaen.

Michael was born in Genoa of Irish/Italian ancestry.

His sudden death has shocked friends and acquaintances in southern Spain.

Olive Press publisher Jon Clarke said: “He wrote the best book on Spain for a decade, Factory of Light, plus a seminal tone on the Alhambra…”

“He loved Andalucia and was a huge supporter of its environment.

“Above all he was always funny and good humoured. We will miss him.”

In December Michael made his final visit to Andalucia with his wife, spending some time in the village of Fraile and visiting Granada.


  1. I met Michael in St. Ives in Cornwall when he came to promote his book about artist colonies, ‘The Good and Simple Life’. He was very approachable and gave me some good advice. Later I bought a house near Frailes, where ‘The Factory of Light’ was set. The book captures the ‘feel’ of the area perfectly. This is very sad news.

  2. Ho conosciuto Michael quasi 40 anni fa, quando girava il Veneto con un motorino scassato per studiare le ville venete. Poco più di un anno fa lo salutavo alla stazione di Firenze, e mi mostrava la foto del cane che i suoi compaesani in Andalusia gli avevano regalato. Persona stupenda, carissimo amico, generoso e allegro. Caro Michael, hai lasciato un gran vuoto.

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