Historical detective fiction from Nicholas Graham. Yehuda from Kerioth was the most able undercover agent that the Temple police had ever produced. After eighteen months of meticulous preparation in the entourage of a Galilean holy man and would-be king of Israel, Yeshua from Nazareth, he came to Jerusalem and pulled off his greatest coup. Two days later he was dead. What went wrong? Buy The Judas Case here.
Sunday, August 28, 2022
Friday, August 26, 2022
The Judas Case - ebook now available
More Judas news!Pleased to announce that the ebook edition of The Judas Case has just dropped.
Wednesday, August 24, 2022
Jesus in Fiction - Man Of Nazareth & The Judas Case
I blogged about Anthony Burgess' MAN OF NAZARETH last month - here.
So I'm delighted to announce that the latest podcast from The Burgess Foundation has just dropped. Join me and foundation director Andrew Biswell as we discuss Burgess’ biblical fiction MAN OF NAZARETH and my debut novel THE JUDAS CASE (published 28 August).
You can get the podcast now from the usual sources:
And of course in all good bookshops.
Monday, August 22, 2022
Small Objects & Intimate Desires: Nicanor's Drinking Bowl
Early in the The Judas Case, Solomon is invited to dinner by his old friend Nicanor from Alexandria, and is intrigued by the silver cup from which the doctor drinks his wine:
The younger slave carried a tray with a ewer and a set of silver bowls, the grandest of which was set before Nico. Engraved upon it was an image of a naked man taking his pleasure with a youth. They were both attached, in complicated ways, to an apparatus of ropes and slings. My own bowl was unadorned.
“A gift from a grateful client,” Nico said when he noticed my gaze.
The fictional cup could very well be mistaken for this one:
So writing characters in the ancient world presents a quite different challenge from that of novels set in the contemporary world of mass production, where domestic objects or material public wealth can more easily be used as a shorthand for social relations and as a way into a character’s interior life. The fact that a twist in The Judas Case’s plot revolves around a linen robe – a garment of extreme luxury that gives Solomon a very specific clue about its wearer – is a deliberate exploitation of this reality. I’ve been careful to portray Solomon and Zenobia (both with complicated backgrounds, both now just within a highly privileged minority that owns land and produces a valuable product) as just beginning to accumulate enough material wealth to feel a certain level of precarious security. A wrap made from an expensive textile, an antelope-hair brush, a brooch with an image of the goddess Isis are notable ornaments, but they’re also small and light enough to be packed up in a hurry and carried to safety. And I should admit at this point that it’s been authoritatively pointed out to me that Solomon’s preference for tunics of Egyptian cotton rather than hemp indicates a level of luxury that he and Zenobia have in other respects not yet attained.
Nico’s drinking cup fits into this world of ancient signification too, and is notable because it, or its twin, exists in the archaeological record. Go along to The British Museum in London and you can see it in Room 70. It’s known as ‘The Warren Cup’ after a collector who owned it for a while, and it has attracted some controversy because of its subject matter and the suggestion (since refuted) that it may have been a modern fake. It is dated to the early part of the 1st Century AD, and was found near Jerusalem at the beginning of the 20th Century. It seemed to me to be just the sort of thing that Nico would use to serve a particularly good vintage either to a new lover or to honoured guests whom he could trust with his inner life.
I should add that the historical cup was dug up in a village just outside of Jerusalem some distance from where I have located Nico’s house. The mystery of how the fictional cup came to this resting place – was it stolen by a disappointed conquest, or buried for safekeeping in turbulent times? – must await another Solomon Eliades mystery.
Friday, August 19, 2022
Publication date - 28th August
‘The Judas Case’ will be published in paperback and ebook on 28th August and is available to pre-order now at the usual online outlets:
direct from the publisher:
even Heffers (apparently):
and from Barnes and Noble:
Review - Call For The Dead
Le Carr é ’s ‘Call For The Dead’ is a first novel remarkable not simply for its tight plot and acute characterisation, but its presentation ...
Years ago, I read John Geiger’s The Third Man Factor . Its point of departure is the niche phenomenon of mountaineers in extremis imaginin...
I'm delighted that The Judas Case is featured on the current edition of the long-running Charlotte Readers Podcast in North Carolina! ...
What’s it going to be then, eh? There was me, that is Jesus, and my three meshuggeners, that is Pete, James and Johnny-Boy, Pete being roc...