Archive: March, 2014

FOR SALE: ONE GUILLOTINE … IN PERFECT WORKING ORDER …

  Who would want a guillotine? I mean not a toy guillotine, but a real one? And one which is in perfect working order. On Thursday, March 27 (this year – 2014), one will be sold by auction in the town of Nantes, 383 kilometres (237 miles) southwest of Paris and home to almost a […]

FRENCH #PUBLISHERS ADMIT THEY LOVE WOMEN OVER 50 …

    How come French publishers love women over 50? Is this not what you would like to know? It so happens that women over 50 are great book buyers. This statement is official, established by a study undertaken by IPSOS, the global market research institute, for the Syndicat national de l’éducation  (SNE) and the […]

Les Ukrainiens seraient-ils les gentils et les Russes les méchants ?

  Les Présidents Obama et François Hollande, le Premier Ministre David Cameron et la Chancelière Angela Merkel … ainsi que l’Union Européenne, se sont entendus pour nous présenter le Président Vladimir Poutine comme un mauvais garçon, a bad guy. Qu’il s’agisse ou non de la Russie. On nous a même fait comprendre que Poutine est un nouveau […]

RAMBOUILLET CASTLE … MANDELA SLEPT HERE … BUT GADDAFI REFUSED …

Rambouillet Chateau is just 50 kms (31 miles) from Paris, yet it is one of France’s least visited castles. There is a reason for this: it is an official presidential ‘weekend’ and ‘summer’ residence, and it is also a venue for international conferences and where heads of state and kings and queens stay when on […]

UKRAINIAN GOOD GUYS … ? RUSSIAN BAD GUYS …?

President Obama, President François Hollande, Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor Angela Merkel … and the European Union (EU) are determined to make us understand that President Vladimir Putin is a bad guy. Not even to speak of Russia. Certainly we have been made to understand that Putin is another Hitler (according to former Secretary […]

WHEN TO WRITE ABOUT FRANCE AND THE FRENCH …?

  Once, I was told that one must never write about a country while living there. The reason is because only once one has left a country can one be objective about it. Objectivity was once very important: do not express your opinion, just tell the story, rookie journalists used to be told by their […]

#PUTIN = #STALIN … RUSSIA = SOVIET UNION … ARE YOU CRAZY …?

  There are those who see Vladimir Putin as another – a new – Josef Stalin. And they are likening Russia to the Soviet Union. Putin is not another Stalin. I mean just look at these two photos of Putin: would Stalin ever have had a face-lift? Seriously now, my novel set in Stalin’s Soviet […]

A SPRING MORNING IN PARIS’S TUILERIES GARDENS …

  Being between books – having finished the writing of one and not getting down to starting another – I am pretending to be a tourist in Paris. So, this morning I did what Parisians love to do: I took a stroll through the #Tuileries Garden. The garden was created by #Queen Catherine of Medicis […]

THE DISCOVERY OF A NAZI BUNKER IN LA ROCHELLE, FRANCE …

    The very observant fellow ex-pat Catherine Broughton will from time to time guest post here. Here she is writing about the Nazi bunker discovered in the coastal town of La Rochelle. The two world wars are going to be in the news this year – WW1 broke out 100 years ago and WW2 […]

ALL PARIS’S WILD ANIMALS UNDER ONE ROOF … ZOO TO REOPEN …

I am not one for nostalgia: as is said these days – I do not do nostalgia. However, born in Africa and having grown up in Southern Africa, there is one thing I, living in Paris, miss about that continent. What? The veldt. Or to be precise: the silence of the veldt. The silence of […]

CAN ONE DRINK TAP WATER IN FRANCE … ?

  I’ve had guests who refused to drink water from my taps. I told them that they can safely do so: I’ve been doing so for scores of years, and I am still alive. But no, they would not. I know that when I arrived in France, I, too, asked whether one could safely drink […]

DIE IN PARIS

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The horrific story of WW2 French serial killer Dr Marcel Petiot, France's most prolific killer.

FOR THE LOVE OF A POET

FOR THE LOVE OF A POET

- For the Love of a Poet - a novel set in the Soviet Union.
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BELLA … A FRENCH LIFE

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