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Christopher Fowler
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Great Britain
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At this time of the year it feels as if every day is like Sunday - gelid, grey, silent. We could be in the depths of the Kent countryside rather than at one of the world's most trafficked spots, partly because we are beset by national postal, air and rail strikes. A friend has no regrets; after she had been forced to cancel a Christmas holiday in Trieste she felt a sense of relief that she could…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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I've been aware of the problem for a very long time, but it wasn't something I could easily solve. All but one of my Bryant & May books are set in London. One the few that isn't is one of my favourites - 'White Corridor'. This bias of location occurs in my books from 'Roofworld' onwards, and it's easy to see why. Whether I was in my office or my home, a few paces took me outside to the capital's…
31 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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How can you feel such a strong connection with a stranger? (On Queen Elizabeth's death, 8th September 2022) It's traditional for us to gather around Buckingham Palace in times of difficulty and uncertainty as well as celebration. And so it was yesterday, with thousands standing silently waiting for news, then remaining into the night, singing hymns and breaking into the National Anthem. Some were…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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When I sat down to write the 1969-set 'Hall of Mirrors' I didn't have to do much period research because I remembered it all too clearly. 1966-1976 was a decade of precipitously disastrous decline for the UK. To go from the futurist, optimistic fantasies of the mid-sixties to corpses stacked outside crematoria while radicalised unionists pulled everyone out on strike was the greatest human fall…
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Christopher Fowler
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How much of the times can you reflect? For most of the twentieth century the crime novel has been timeless, a place you could go where nothing much ever changed. Crime novels do reveal when they were written, of course. I instinctively place a pre- or post-war bracket on the older books I read. And current crime novels can largely be dated by their subject matter; sex trafficking, online…
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Christopher Fowler
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Great Britain
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There's a good reason why everyone keeps comparing our present situation with that of the seventies. The Sunday Times recently reminded me about the 1973 oil shock, when the Opec nations turned off the oil supply in response to Israel's Yom Kippur war. Already reeling from economy-crippling battles with the unions, governed by a high Tory yachtsman painfully out of his depth, the UK in the…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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Acceptance is such a small step for anyone to take A while ago I went to dinner with a publisher who brought along his 85 year-old mother without even thinking to mention it. She proved to be sharp and funny and enhanced the table considerably, preventing it from descending into an endless discussion about book rights. She certainly knew the square meterage of her home. ('You must come visit. My…
46 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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My mother once gave me her explanation of the Union Jack. 'It represents unity. We are four countries, not one, although we should be three.' She never told me which one she would take out, but I assumed it was Ireland. As a child I formed a very clear idea of what my country was. It was a maritime island, four nations standing for all that was decent and right. It was honest where others were…
60 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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Summer, distinguishable from spring by nomenclature only, gave us a better manifestation of philosophical pessimism than Schopenhauer ever came up with. And as it shrivelled and dribbled away it seemingly took with it Covid, which has largely vanished from British front pages even though the infection rates on our overcrowded little island are higher than almost anywhere in Europe. In fact, the UK…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Great Britain
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Winter Is Icumen In After last year's glorious summer there was a hope that this year Britain would enjoy the same, but to gamble on the weather is to have your hopes smashed. Here's the Met office on why it felt like the British summer was flushed down the drain; 'The perception of a summer of bad weather was felt most keenly in London and the south-east. London's rainfall was 48 per cent above…
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