James Alexander Craig Thom (May 26, 1933, Gosport, Indiana) is an American author, best known for his works in the Western genre and colonial American history which are noted for their historical accuracy borne of his painstaking research. Thom graduated from Butler University in 1961 with a BA in Journalism after serving in the United States Marine Corps in the Korean Conflict. He taught a course in journalism at Indiana University, and was a contributor to the The Saturday Evening Post. In 1975, he married his third wife international platform speaker Dr. Cody Sweet. She became his literary agent and introduced him to senior editor Nancy Coffee at Avon Books and Random House. Coffee asked Sweet to manage the publicity tours and media campaigns for Thom's first three books, his best selling tomes. Eleven historical and contemporary novels followed. He has been married five times, currently to Claudia Cahill Dixon Kirkpatrick who writes under the name of "Dark Rain" Thom.
From Sea to Shining Sea (a novelized biography based on the lives of the John and Ann Rogers Clark family, their 10 children which included brothers General George Rogers Clark, Revolutionary War Hero, and Captain William Clark of the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific) (Villard Books, 1984)
Panther in the Sky (a novelized biography of Tecumseh, the Shawnee Indian chieftain) (Ballantine Books, 1989)