Lost Alienation

During my teens, my family lived at the very farthest southern reach of London. At the bottom of the hill, the road made its final exit from London and travelled on, not quite wide enough for two cars, to the North Downs of Kent. Sometimes I would ride my bike along the lane and up […]

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 […]

Soggy sheep at breakfast

I was under the impression that the English weren’t allowed into Wales any more, now that Tony Blair persuaded us we ought to have at least half a government of our own and let Westminster pay for it. I assume Colin Cotterill managed to make it through the border undercover on his Australian passport. Which […]

Book of A Lifetime: The King Must Die

The Independent has a regular feature in which it asks authors to write about a book which changed their lives somehow. Last week the London newspaper asked me to write the piece. Here it is: In early 1999, King Hussein fell sick on his return from cancer treatment in the US. I was Middle East […]

Oldest Bible? Tell it to the Samaritans

UK newspaper The Daily Telegraph reports the discovery of a portion of a Bible from 350 AD in the library of the monastery of St. Catherine in the Sinai. The Codex Sinaiticus is written in Greek on animal skin and the newspaper calls it “a fragment of the world’s oldest bible.” Well, I hate to […]