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Matt Beynon Rees's Blog

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Jun.28.2009
Matt Rees and Munther Fahmi
This weekend I was the guest of Munther Fahmi, who runs the excellent bookshop at the American Colony Hotel in East Jerusalem, for a reading from my newest Palestinian crime novel THE SAMARITAN'S SECRET. Munther and I have been scheming for some time to organize an event, so it was great to finally...
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Jun.26.2009
Hoffman's book
A new book examines the lives of Palestinian poetsBy Matt Beynon Rees - on GlobalPost JERUSALEM — Whenever Palestinian and Israeli artists get together for public “dialogues,” it always seems to end with the Israelis saying, “We’re sorry,” and the Palestinians responding, “Screw you anyway.” That...
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Jun.26.2009
The Samaritan's Secret UK paperback
I'm taking a break of a couple of weeks between drafts of my latest novel. To clear my head and to allow my body to accustom itself to a step up in desert heat here in Jerusalem (it's hard to concentrate the first day the temperature hits 35 degrees, particularly when you write standing up as I do...
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Jun.25.2009
I bet you didn't know there was an underground scene in Jerusalem (at least not an underground music scene; you've probably heard of some other undergrounds that operate here). Here's a little bit of Middle East insider poop for you: what's the most obscure underground band in Jerusalem? Answer:...
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Jun.25.2009
Foreign correspondents are always more enthusiastic about Beirut than about Amman. Just like critics prefer “literary” fiction to crime novels. It seems to me they’re both wrong, and for the same reasons. Visiting reporters always rave about Beirut. Mainly because there’s a very un-Middle Eastern...
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Jun.24.2009
My second Palestinian crime novel A Grave in Gaza (UK title: The Saladin Murders) is just now published in Holland. The Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant asked me to contribute a list of my five favorite books, or at least those which've had the biggest impact on me as a writer. Here's what I wrote:...
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Jun.23.2009
The video blog Watch the Video features the clip I made for the second of my Palestinian crime novels A Grave in Gaza (UK title: The Saladin Murders). The rest of my videos feature on my Youtube channel. Many writers make promotional videos for their books these days, as you'll see from the Watch...
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Jun.21.2009
The Budapest Protocol
The Budapest Protocol, by Adam Lebor(Reportage Press) Sometimes a journalist comes across something so powerful that it seems bigger than the project he’s researching. Usually it’s put aside to serve as the basis for a future project, a magazine article or another nonfiction book. Sometimes it...
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Jun.18.2009
Much as I love Nordic crime fiction, the Europewide megaseller “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” by Stieg Larsson made me want to throw knives like the Swedish chef on The Muppet Show. Why? Two reasons. First, the minor reason. Written by a (tragically deceased) Swedish journalist, the book is...
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Jun.18.2009
Je fais une lecture en francais chez la librairie francaise a Jerusalem ce mois. Voici les detailles : «Meurtre chez les Samaritains» de Matt Rees, Editions Albin Michel Tout est possible en Palestine, et rien ne dit que le jeune Ishaq, le fils du prêtre des Samaritains de Naplouse, n’a pas été...
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Jun.14.2009
Israeli Prime Minister ignores Obama and reiterates same policiesby Matt Beynon Rees on Global Post JERUSALEM — It’s as if Obama never happened. Less than two weeks ago President Barack Obama laid out his plans for the Middle East in a speech in Cairo. He called for a freeze on Israeli settlement...
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Jun.14.2009
Promised Virgins
The magazine of Harvard's Nieman Fellowship asked me to write an essay about Jeffrey Fleishman's "Promised Virgins: A Novel of Jihad". I wrote about why international correspondents like me and Fleishman, Cairo bureau chief for the LA Times, turn to novels to express the depth of what we...
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Jun.13.2009
A new review in the Ann Arbor Chronicle suggests healthy grassroots popularity for my Palestinian crime novels. The review of my first Palestinian crime novel "The Collaborator of Bethlehem" (UK Title: The Bethlehem Murders) is written by Robin Agnew, owner of Aunt Agatha's Mystery...
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Jun.10.2009
Happy-Guru Weiner
What’s happiness? A large income, Jane Austen said. Absolute ignorance, according to the delightfully morbid Grahame Greene. Or John Lennon’s less delightfully morbid warm gun. Whatever else it is, happiness is done to death. But where it is? That’s something new. The genius of Eric Weiner’s New...
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Jun.07.2009
Paying Back Jack
I heard from my chum Christopher G. Moore that he just finished writing the 11th in his series of Vincent Calvino crime novels set in Bangkok. That's good news, because I already read his brilliant and forthcoming Paying Back Jack. (See my review "Elmore Leonard in Bangkok"). Knowing...
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