Archive | November, 2010

24 November 2010 0 Comments

Madonna to be Grandma, Dan Brown new book excerpt

MADONNA TO BE GRANDMA Pop superstar Madonna is set to be a grandma, according to people familiar with reproduction. Though her daughter Lourdes is currently only 14 years old, reproductive specialists and experts on Catholic girls say the birth could come within as little as a decade. Fans of the 52-year-old Material Girl are sure […]

18 November 2010 0 Comments

UK Royal wedding conspiracy delights

When the British Prime Minister announced at the cabinet table the engagement of the heir to the heir to the throne this week, he professed himself “delighted.” The government ministers raised a cheer and hammered the tabletop in delight. This parody of a Colonel Blimp drinking club goes to show that you can take the […]

18 November 2010 0 Comments

Israel’s public rabbis court controversy

Israel’s holy men have long had a reputation for an approach toward the society around them that is, shall we say, considerably less conciliatory and compassionate than the Dalai Lama. Lately the country’s rabbis appear to be taking it to a new grade of nastiness. A judge on the Tel Aviv Rabbinical Court, Dov Domb, […]

14 November 2010 0 Comments

Vienna mythbusters: the truth about the Imperial city

After spending so long researching my next novel, MOZART’S LAST ARIA, in the Austrian capital, I was invited by AOL News to write a piece for their travel section. They asked me to identify some myths about Vienna and to show whether they were correct or not. Here’s how the article starts: Like any other […]

11 November 2010 4 Comments

Clive Owen is going to die

British actor Clive Owen, star of box office hits like “Sin City,” “Elizabeth: The Golden Age,” and “King Arthur,” is expected to die, according to people familiar with death. The 46-year-old heartthrob, famed for his slightly nasal London twang, lusterless delivery and not being as good as co-star Julia Roberts in “Duplicity,” is in apparently […]

11 November 2010 2 Comments

My new blog experiment

I’ve noticed a preponderance of writers complaining about having to write blogs when they should be writing books. Well, I’ve figured out a number of ways of coping with the different demands and style of blogging, as well as the doubt that afflicts all writers of books–does the blog help sell the books? Ultimately I […]

11 November 2010 4 Comments

Jerusalem: Just the facts

U.S. President Barack Obama criticized Israel’s plans to add 1,000 housing units to Jerusalem neighborhoods in the area of the city conquered by Israel in 1967 this week. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded that “Jerusalem is the capital of the state of Israel” and he intends to build wherever he likes. What kind of […]

7 November 2010 6 Comments

Swallow semen, identify penis: Helen Fitzgerald’s Writing Life interview

It will be a long time before anyone thinks of a better way to open their first novel than this: “My best friend Sarah was asleep. Her husband was lying beside her, and I was swallowing his semen.” That’s paragraph two of “Dead Lovely” by Helen Fitzgerald, a fabulous crime novel which manages to amuse, […]

4 November 2010 0 Comments

Gentleman and thug: researching my new historical novel

One of the great pleasures of novel-writing is the research which, for almost every book, ought to bring the writer to investigate different areas of inquiry. To become a swift expert in something others might spend all their lives studying. That’s why I’ve taken up my sword.

1 November 2010 0 Comments

Me and Philip Sington, with a bit of Israeli catch-up

Just back from a grand tour of family in the UK, Paris for the Caravaggios in the Louvre, and Disneyland Paris because my son is old-fashioned and still likes Mickey Mouse (everyone else at Disneyland seems to be a Toy Story type). So I’m catching up, posting a couple of things that went up online […]