Stieg Larsson’s success fuels interest in Nordic noir

By Alice Johnson Published in The National, Review, May 19, 2012 What is it that makes Nordic noir fiction so compelling to its many fans? Is it the barren landscapes, unpronounceable surnames, woolly-jumpered detectives or the serial crimes committed in ice-cold surroundings that so definitively stimulate intrigue among readers? And while the acclaimed Swedish writer […] [...more]

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Marina Lewycka recounts the hippie commune era in latest book

Published on 9th April, 2012, in The National newspaper By Alice Johnson What was the philosophy of hippie communes in the 1960s? The spiritual communities pursued non-violent beliefs, vegetarianism with plenty of lentils, left-wing politics and often free love. However, remembering this era and its actual purpose was one of the most difficult aspects for […] [...more]

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Book Review: Taxi, by Khaled Al Khamissi

By Alice Johnson Dubai One of the only ways to get around in Cairo is by Taxi – any one of the city’s 80,000 beaten-up, smoke-filled cabs that navigate themselves around the capital’s chaotic, pot-holed streets. The hardships of life in Cairo – and indeed Egypt – are encapsulated by the city’s taxi drivers, who […] [...more]

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Book review – The American Granddaughter, by Inaam Kachachi

Review by Alice Johnson When Iraqi-American Zeina Behnam hears that the FBI is recruiting translators, she doesn’t hesitate to apply. Having watched the Twin Towers collapse on her TV screen right in front of her eyes in her living room, she feels a mixture of excitement and vulnerability. What could she do to help her […] [...more]

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Egypt’s revolution: in Tweets

A highly recommended book I recently reviewed – how the Egyptian revolution unfolded, as told by Cairo-based Twitter users. I think it might even be the first book of its kind published in this format. The story of the Egyptian revolution told through the eyes of Cairo-based tweeters By Alice Johnson There is only so […] [...more]

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