7 October 2010 0 Comments

Urinal-top video

We were on the Hessian plain somewhere outside Frankfurt when I felt as though the drugs had taken hold. Why am I paraphrasing the great Hunter S. Thompson? Because I endured an experience that Professor Gonzo could only have imagined in his wildest LSD frenzies. Something that made me feel I must be hallucinating, as […]

9 February 2010 0 Comments

Wall St Journal on ‘The Fourth Assassin’

During my visit to New York this last couple of weeks, I stopped into the space-age HQ of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp on Sixth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. Once my eyes had adjusted to the superbright white light everywhere, I settled into a studio for an interview with Jon Friedman (the man known around NY […]

10 January 2010 0 Comments

Book Tours Not Just Ego Tripping

Not long ago a friend of mine commented that my travels to promote my books must be a great pleasure to me. “You just have to talk about yourself,” he sneered. “You must like that.” I ignored the implied insult (until now). But it struck me that people might think book tours are literally ego-trips. […]

19 November 2009 0 Comments

Researching the novel

Novelists aren’t journalists. Research for a novel isn’t the same as researching a journalistic article. I’d have thought that was too obvious to need stating. But then I became a published novelist, and I realized that people thought the two things were rather the same. I was a journalist for almost 20 years before my […]

14 October 2009 0 Comments

Those disorganized Swiss

You know the reputation. “Swiss” isn’t a nationality. It’s really an adjective meaning highly organized and perhaps even a little too punctilious. That’s a myth. The place is just like the Middle East… (Look, I write fiction, but I may be onto something. Read on.) On my recent reading tour, I stopped in Basel as […]

2 October 2009 0 Comments

Neon pee on the Reeperbahn, and other travels

The whole point of travel is to see Red Light districts around the world. That’s what I assume my German publisher C.H. Beck thinks. Or maybe that’s what they think I’ll like. Anyway, they keep sending me to Hamburg, which has one of the most famous naughty neighborhoods in the world. At the invitation of […]

10 September 2009 1 Comment

Scared away

Here’s my latest post on the International Crime Authors Reality Check blog: I keep finding new reasons why I write my novels about the Palestinians. Usually these reasons have nothing to do with the Palestinians. Here’s the one that may be the deepest, the one I’ve known about for a while, but have only recently […]

5 May 2009 0 Comments

French mystery trove

For those who happen to read some French, Planete Polar is a wonderful source of news and reviews about crime fiction, crime writers, and movie offshoots. It’s written by Philippe Lemaire, cultural correspondent for Le Parisien. Philippe’s a delightful fellow who’s interviewed me a couple of times — once in Paris, and also in Bethlehem […]

28 April 2009 0 Comments

Baksheeshed to the Bone

I’m guest-blogger today on Checkpoint Jerusalem, the excellent and delightfully varied blog by McClatchy Newspapers Middle East correspondent Dion Nissenbaum. Dion does a better job of rooting out interesting cultural angles on the news than anyone else covering the Middle East. Under the headline “Jesus was Right: Finding a Good Samaritan”, Dion introduces my series […]

17 April 2009 0 Comments

The Best Bookshop in Germany

In the town of Ruesselsheim, near Mainz, I’ve discovered the best bookshop in Germany. The Buecherhaus Jansen stands in a down-at-heel pedestrian street at the heart of an industrial town (home to Opel cars, a troubled subsidiary of General Motors), surrounded mostly by doner kebab restaurants and discount stores. Hans-Juergen Jansen has built his store […]