So, it’s officially got to that time of year again when we wake up for work and it’s dark, and then we get home from work, and guess what…it’s dark.
So, as there will be many of you out there jetting off for some Autumn sun, or maybe you’re going off for a nice traveling session (I’ve recently spoken to many a soon-to-be intrepid explorer – seems the travel bugs come around again), or even if, like me, you’re going to power through the winter months with layers of clothes and mugs of hot chocolate, then fear not I’ve got a plan that means we can all journey round the world together.
Follow this link to our world map of travel Killer Reads. Read the extracts and journey to cities you know and love, or get lost in towns you’ve never even heard of. If you are off on your travels this autumn to any of these locations (or any other destinations from your favorite thrillers) then please feel free to send us images from locations mentioned in those thriller books and films to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag Killer Reads in the photo on facebook so the team can journey all over the world this Autumn as well…
Robert Wilson was born in 1957, the son of an RAF pilot. After graduating from Oxford in English, he was forced to re-think his sporting career following a motoring accident.
He travelled extensively, touring the states and travelling to Nepal in a VW van before working in Crete on archaeological tours. He then took jobs in shipping and advertising but soon grew restless.
Wandering is in Rob’s nature and he can hardly believe he makes his living sitting at a desk typing. After marrying in 1986 he spent a year travelling across Africa with his wife, an experience he recommends “if you want to know if you can live with someone for the rest of your life… the desert tells you things about yourself”. It would also teach him everything he needed to know to write his atmospheric African novels.
He continued work in shipping in West Africa until eventually his English degree caught up with him: he fell in love with Portugal and began renovating an isolated farmhouse while beginning to write his first novel.
He is now the writer of eight critically acclaimed novels. A Small Death in Lisbon won the CWA Gold Dagger for best novel and his Javier Falcon have been published to critical acclaim. The Hidden Assassins is the latest in the series, published in July.
Robert Wilson on Book Army
Robert Wilson gives us some sneaky details about his next title….
I’m developing new ideas for my latest book at the moment. It’s going to be set in London and I’m looking forward to speaking English in my books, i.e. writing with no Spanish language/cultural filter as I’ve done these last seven years. I’ve been renting flats in places that I either haven’t seen for ages or have never been to before. Although I used to live in Clapham back in the 1980s I realise that most Londoners tread very well-worn paths. So I lived and drank south of the river, my sister was in Wandsworth, I worked in the West End and had friends and girlfriends who worked in Soho. My knowledge centred around the West, centre and South.
When The Ignorance of Blood was launched earlier this year I stayed in Hampstead, where I hadn’t been since I’d had a girlfriend at the Royal Free Hospital in 1982. It’s changed, but not as much as I’d expected. The dominant language in the street was French. My wife heard kids at school-chucking-out time speaking Franglais and the mothers were all French. I had my hair cut by a French woman and asked her what it was all about. She hadn’t noticed the phenomenon and was mystified by my question. She could only think, after a while, that it was because Hampstead ‘was very beautiful and felt cheap to Parisians’, which earned a single raised eyebrow from me. The Hampstead estate agencies looked more like ad agencies with highly designed, colourful interiors, replete with fainting couches for English people who couldn’t quite believe the asking prices. It was amazing to see the Heath again: that vast piece of real countryside, rather than park, in the middle of the city. We went up Parliament Hill for a view of the metropolis as the sun was setting on a cold day. One side of No.1, Canada Square out east in the Docklands, was glistening like a gold ingot. It was good to have a pint of Benskins at the Holly Bush tavern, which maintains its panelled interior and those Victorian wood and glass dividers that so many pubs have torn out in favour of open plan and more custom.
I’d never been to Highgate Cemetery and we did the tour through the ivy strewn grave stones and mausoleums, imagining black-plumed horses pulling up with coffins and a funeral procession for Thomas Sayers, a famous prizefighter, whose cortege stretched all the way back into the City. The finest aspect of his grave is that very English thing: the man’s dog. I signed books in the new St Pancras Station and was blown away, as the Victorians must have been, by that vast, arched, glass and steel roof. The new Westfield shopping centre was on my itinerary and, having had my spirit broken by many a lightless concentration of retail therapy, I was surprised. There was sunlight, space and calm, which I suppose meant that people didn’t have any money to spend.