Beautiful Ancient Egyptian jewellery features in my new novel, Song of the Nile. Thanks to the gifts of her father, a keen archaeologist and Egyptologist, Aida has a huge collection of magnificent pieces: earrings, necklaces, bracelets, arm bands and headpieces dating back as far as the Hellenistic period.
‘Aida felt a familiar thrill of anticipation as she crossed the wide veranda and went through those hospitable doors; she’d enjoyed many happy times in this old hotel. Shepheard’s was an institution, holding its own unique place in the affections of all who knew and loved Egypt…’
‘I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.’ So declares the heroine of my favourite work of English literature. Jane Eyre was published in the 1840s, yet a century later still a woman has to assert her right to independence in a man’s world…
The beautiful landscapes of Upper Egypt, where I grew up, are so vividly etched into my memory. The Nile, of course, is at the heart of the landscapes, and one of the most romantic views is of traditional felucca sailboats gliding on these timeless waters.
The new Bibliotheca Alexandrina is a treasure of my birthplace: Alexandria, Egypt. Not only is it beautiful and significant in and of itself, but it commemorates the Great Library of Alexandria built in the 200s BC, one of the most important libraries of all time. How could I fail to be inspired by such devotion to books?
Here’s the dilemma: You’ve written a smouldering, passionate romance novel. It’s set in 1970. Is it a historical romance novel, or is it too recent? Is it contemporary romance novel, or is it too much in the past?
For me, Christmas is synonymous with a trip to the theatre – to watch a ballet, a play or a fun pantomime with the children. This year, sadly, the theatres are closed. But you can still see a wonderful London show…
The Arabian horse breed can be traced back thousands of years. ‘Thou shalt fly without wings and conquer without swords’ is how the Quran refers to this horse.
The largest temple complex ever built with a construction history spanning 2,000 years, Karnak is one of the most important ancient sites in Egypt.
In our modern world it seems to me that there is a great and powerful need to hurry. If you have a dream, there is no time to waste, we are told: go out there right now and seize hold of your dream! But this is not the only path to a dream; and neither, perhaps, is it the best one.