Muashra Blog

The “Cadfael” Mysteries 0

The “Cadfael” Mysteries

Like most readers, I suspect, in these busy times, I seem to do the majority of my reading about eleven o’clock at night, climbing into bed with a book after a very long day,...

The Seville Communion 0

The Seville Communion by Arturo Pèrez-Reverte

One of the challenges of being a mystery writer these days, is that the early generations who created the genre were so fiendishly good. Agatha Christie, Arthur Canon Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, Dashell Hammett, Ross...

Orientalism by Edward W. Said 0

Orientalism by Edward W. Said

Since the World Trade terror on September 11th, many people in the West have been solemnly reading histories of the Middle East and Islam, hoping to understand what happened. One of the most interesting...

When We Were Orphans 0

When We Were Orphans by Kazuo Ishiguro

Despite their location on opposite sides of the planet, it has often been remarked that Japan and Britain bear an uncanny resemblance to one another, culturally speaking: two island nations that sit, somewhat defensively,...

Moroccan Interiors 0

Moroccan Interiors by Lisa Lovatt-Smith

I grew up in a Spanish California house, a style of architecture that was popular in Los Angeles before World War Two: a languid old home with rounded arches, thick stucco walls, a wrought-iron...

The Sparrow 0

The Sparrow by Maria Doria Russell

Back in my youth, I was a big fan of science fiction: Jules Verne, Robert Heinlein, Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clark, Frank Herbert, Isaac Asimov, and company, the early greats. Then something happened. The...

A History of God 0

A History of God by Karen Armstrong

The Sinai Peninsula is one of the most startlingly beautiful places on earth: a land of fantastically shaped gold-brown mountains, utterly treeless, rising up from the Red Sea – in reality, not red at...

Buddha 0

Buddha by Karen Armstrong

A few weeks ago I reviewed A History of God, by Karen Armstrong, a fascinating history of the three major monotheistic religions, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. Karen Armstrong is a former Catholic nun and...