Archive | March, 2010

31 March 2010 0 Comments

Israeli settler sect: Messiah is coming

GIVAT ONAN, West Bank—On this windblown outpost in the hills north of Jerusalem, a small group of Israeli settlers strives to bring the day of redemption promised, as they believe, in the Bible. A controversial sect shunned by nearby Israeli settlements, the Brothers of Onan believe that by “spilling their seed” on the land of […]

30 March 2010 0 Comments

Crime fiction with a vengeance

The Swedish title of Part I in Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy was “Men Who Hate Women.” Which shows that you can write a huge international bestseller and not know why people would read your book. Larsson’s U.K. publisher changed the title to “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.” With his original title, Larsson would’ve been […]

25 March 2010 0 Comments

Back to Israel: Recall what’s foreign

When you live in a foreign place, it can become home. You forget how foreign it is. Then you go to another foreign country, only to discover that it doesn’t seem so foreign. And you realize that the place you live actually IS extremely foreign. That’s what happened to me during the last week, when […]

25 March 2010 0 Comments

Following Gunter Grass into the hot seat

This weekend I was in Leipzig, Germany, for one of the country’s biggest book fairs. While there I was interviewed for German tv in front of a big audience of festivalgoers, many of whom were mysteriously dressed as Japenese cartoon characters… In fact, the Blue Sofa is right at the entrance to the book fair […]

16 March 2010 0 Comments

In Nablus, the price is right

I was tucking into a slice of qanafi at my favorite vendor in the Nablus casbah yesterday when a gang of Palestinian reporters and officials intruded on my guilty pleasure. This was at Aqsa Sweets, which readers of THE SAMARITAN’S SECRET will know as the place favored by the hero of my Palestinian crime novels […]

13 March 2010 0 Comments

Vegas City Life: ‘The Fourth Assassin’ a mystery of culture, rather than murder

Las Vegas City Life reviewer Tod Goldberg comes up with a compelling reading of my new Palestinian crime novel THE FOURTH ASSASSIN this week. Here’s a little of what Tod writes: “As in his previous novels, Rees has steeped The Fourth Assassin in the mire of present day politics and religion while showing that most […]

12 March 2010 0 Comments

As Biden leaves, Israel feels Iran fears

To force US action on Iran’s nukes, Netanyahu may need to concede in talks with Palestinians. (I posted this on Global Post.) JERUSALEM — Israeli leaders would like nothing better than to smash Iran’s putative nuclear capability with a swift bombing raid. Trouble is, most Israeli military and political chiefs are doubtful it could be […]

11 March 2010 10 Comments

Why I love clogged Arab toilets better than Amazon Kindles

As I travel the Middle East to research my Palestinian crime novels, I love to come upon a stinking squatting-toilet, its evacuation hole bubbling with dark, sinister turds and the air strong with the scent of barely digested, unhygienically prepared lamb kebab. I adore such a khazi on sight, because no one cleaned it up […]

10 March 2010 0 Comments

Political suicide of a peace-loving party

The Israeli party of conscience dissolves, and with it a rare leftist voice in a rightist country. (I posted this on GlobalPost) TEL AVIV — Israel’s politics is in a mess. How do I know? The party that stands most firmly for peace talks, environmentalism, liberal education, social justice, separation of religion and state, women’s […]

10 March 2010 0 Comments

Bigmouth loves ‘Bethlehem Murders’

Me and My Big Mouth is the blog of the inimitable Scott Pack, the most innovative (and, to many, the most controversial) man in British publishing. We met a year ago in freezing Oslo, tramped through the snow to the Ibsen Museum, and generally had a great time. It’s possible we were the only teetotallers […]