22 May 2008 0 Comments

Blog buzz builds for Omar Yussef series

The buzz on blogs surrounding my crime series about Palestinian detective Omar Yussef continues to build. The books feature in reviews on at least three blogs and book review sites just today. The particularly gratifying thing is that most of these bloggers are individuals who’ve read the book or independent bookstores, so it’s clear that grass roots support for the Omar Yussef series is building.

In a staff review from Dog Ears Books in Northport, Michigan, Bruce Balas writes that the second Omar Yussef Mystery A Grave in Gaza (UK title The Saladin Murders) is exciting and, in spite of the horrors of Gaza, humorous. He also says he’s keen to go back and read the first Omar Yussef Mystery. Here’s his review: http://booksinnorthport.blogspot.com/2008/05/staff-book-review-grave-in-gaza.html

Two other blogs have reviews of that first Omar mystery, The Collaborator of Bethlehem (UK title The Bethlehem Murders). Canadian Bookworm (http://cdnbookworm.blogspot.com), a librarian and avid reader, writes that she “was moved by this story and found Omar a complex character.”

On the Mostly Fiction blog, the reviewer picks up on my portrayal of the infighting among the Palestinian gangs and security forces: “The real strength of The Collaborator of Bethlehem comes from Rees’ expert handling of the setting. The underlying story turns out to be a nuanced one showing the internal conflicts in the region not just between the Palestinians and the Israelis but between the various factions of Palestinians themselves.” (http://mostlyfiction.com/sleuths/rees.htm)

Well, if the Mostly Fiction reviewer likes the infighting in Collaborator, she’d better pick up A Grave in Gaza, because that’s the last word on internecine Palestinian trouble.

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