UK fiction blog guest post on Mozart’s intellectual life

The excellent UK fiction blog Floor to Ceiling Books (you can find film and television reviews there too) has a guest post from me about how my portrayal of Mozart stacks up against the popular image of him as a buffoon who happened to be able to write sublime music. I’m delighted blogger “Magemanda” posed this question to me, because recovering Mozart’s personal intellectual reputation became rather important to me while I wrote MOZART’S LAST ARIA. I hope you’ll read the guest post and look through the rest of this varied and intriguing blog.

Roll over Amadeus: Mozart’s Last Aria ‘a cracking read’

Novelist, journalist and classical music blogger Jessica Duchen has an interview with me about my new novel Mozart’s Last Aria on her excellent blog today, which she titles “Roll Over Amadeus.” Wish I’d thought of the headline. (Well, now it’s on my blog anyhow!) Here’s how she introduces her interview: “A musical thriller landed on my desk the other week. In Mozart’s Last Aria, by Matt Rees, the sleuth is Nannerl Mozart; the death she’s investigating is that of her beloved brother. It’s a cracking read. Matt, based in Jerusalem, is a well-established crime fiction author and a former foreign correspondent who covered, amongst other things, the second Intifada on location. Why, then, did he want to write a detective story on ground that had already been so powerfully claimed by Peter Shaffer?” Read the interview here.

Inspiration–and laughter–for the ladies: Ghada Abdel Aal’s Writing Life


When she was in her early twenties, Egyptian writer Ghada Abdel Aal began the complicated process of seeking a spouse. It involved meetings in parental living rooms over awkward glasses of tea. On one such occasion her potential groom spent his time screaming at a soccer game on tv. Another turned out to have a couple of wives already, and a would-be husband who was also a policeman started investigating her background for criminality or other unwanted elements. She turned to blogging about these meetings and discovered that other Egyptian women had similar experiences. Since then, her blog has become a huge success around the Arab world; her book I Want to Get Married has been published in several languages (it came out last year in English) and has been adapted for television. Ghada, a religious Muslim who covers her hair and who is quite hilariously funny in person and in her writing, has had the kind of cultural impact that makes her countrymen leap around with excitement when they meet her (as I can attest from having seen her at a book festival in an Arab country not long ago.) Here’s what she told me about how she came to write her book and its impact on her life: Read more

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 good health, but death experts tell “The Man of Twists and Turns” that he will probably be tragically dead by 2060 at most and could go any day between now and then.

To be sure, this revelation, which will shock Hollywood, doesn’t take into account cryogenics or further potential developments in the Botoxing of internal organs by Southern Californian doctors, dental hygienists and auto mechanics. Nonetheless, Hollywood bloggers are sure to take news of Owen’s eventual demise as a sign of the mortality of other stars who seem to be otherwise a long way from their end. Read more

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