3 November 2011 0 Comments

A Secret About Wolfgang’s Death

My new crime novel Mozart’s Last Aria is out this week in the US. The great composer dies, telling his family he has been poisoned. Mozart’s sister Nannerl comes to Imperial Vienna to find out what really happened. She exposes a Masonic conspiracy and uncovers a secret hidden in The Magic Flute. Look for more […]

31 October 2011 0 Comments

MOZART’S LAST ARIA book trailer

My new novel MOZART’S LAST ARIA is narrated by the great composer’s sister Nannerl. After her brother dies, Nannerl comes to Vienna to find out how it happened. She uncovers some sinister characters and a secret hidden in The Magic Flute. The book’s published in the US Nov. 1 by HarperCollins. Here’s a trailer for […]

31 October 2011 0 Comments

Me, Mozart and the intifada

If there had never been a Palestinian intifada, I might never have written my novel about the death of Mozart, MOZART’S LAST ARIA, which is published Nov. 1 in the US by HarperCollins. Of course, 4,000 people would also be alive who are now dead. In the course of writing about that destruction between 2000 […]

4 September 2011 2 Comments

PW: MOZART’S LAST ARIA combines Dan Brown, Elizabeth Kostova

My historical thriller MOZART’S LAST ARIA will be out in the US at the beginning of November. Publishers Weekly has the first pre-publication review, and it’s a great one: In this engaging, well-paced book from crime novelist and journalist Rees (The Collaborator of Bethlehem), Mozart’s estranged sister, Madame Maria Anna Berchtold von Sonnenburg (called Nannerl […]

2 July 2011 0 Comments

The Music of MOZART’S LAST ARIA: The Requiem

In my novel about the death of the great composer, I knew I’d have to give a central position to Mozart’s Requiem, his most powerful piece of music and the one that’s most laden with death — perhaps, indeed, his own. So, in MOZART’S LAST ARIA, there’s a key scene set in the crypt below […]

29 June 2011 0 Comments

Using real locations in historical fiction

London classical music guru Mark Berry has a guest post from me on his excellent Boulezian blog. I write about how my task as a historical novelist was aided by the period locations still surviving in Vienna, when I wrote my new book MOZART’S LAST ARIA. I also write more about some of those places […]

3 June 2011 0 Comments

Sexy classical music and crime novels

When Peter Cook admitted to Dudley Moore that he was “turned on by dead Popes,” it was a satire on those among us who’re so bored by their lives as to be infinitely suggestible. Thus a dead pope lying on a catafalque in white robes looks “at peace, at rest, and ****ing fanciable.” The joke, […]

18 May 2011 0 Comments

Long gestation and the crime novel

Crime novelists generally write a novel a year. It’s what publishers want. Some big writers—and I mean, 25 million books sold—have told me their publishers and agents complain that if they don’t produce a book a year their readers will forget them. In the case of such writers, some of those 25 million may have […]

10 May 2011 0 Comments

Literary Review: MOZART’S LAST ARIA ‘lively, well-researched, very clever’

In the current edition of London’s Literary Review, Jessica Mann leads her roundup of new crime novels with this praise for MOZART’S LAST ARIA, my historical thriller about the great composer’s death: “Matt Rees has drawn a lively portrait of eighteenth-century Vienna and of characters whose names now live only because of their connection with […]

8 May 2011 0 Comments

The Music of MOZART’S LAST ARIA: Piano sonata in A minor

In the first chapter of MOZART’S LAST ARIA, my new historical thriller, Nannerl Mozart plays the disturbing, frenetic opening movement of the sonata for piano in A minor, which her brother Wolfgang wrote just after his mother’s death. I used this piece as the framework for my novel. I built the opening of the book, […]