‘The Jews and the Arabs have been fighting over the Middle East for thousands of years. It will never end.’

At the time I heard this, I didn’t know much about Middle East politics. So, I researched it.

Unfortunately, the Holy Land has been anything but holy. The entire history of the Middle East is caked in blood. According to the Christian Bible, it is where the first ever murder took place – when Cain murdered Abel.

Inhabited since the Bronze Age by Canaanite tribes, it has been the setting for innumerable conflicts. The Assyrians, the Babylonians, Alexander the Great, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Crusaders, the Mamluks and the Ottomans, amongst many others, have all conquered and ruled there.

It was the Jewish-Roman wars in the century following the death of Christ and the ensuing destruction of Jerusalem that formed the backdrop of the modern-day Palestinian conflict. The crushing of the Judean revolt led to the creation of the Jewish diaspora. For two thousand years, Jews all over the world dreamed of their eventual return. ‘If I Forget Thee O Jerusalem’ forms part of Psalm 137, commonly recited before grace at mealtimes.

In 1896, Theodor Herzl published a book offering his vision of a future Jewish state in Palestine, and the Zionist movement made that dream a reality. By the early part of the 20th century, Jewish settlers began building communal agricultural settlements called kibbutzim. At the time, the population of Palestine was about eighty per cent Arab Muslim.

But it was the British Mandate in Palestine after World War 1, combined with British government support for Jewish immigration, that laid the foundation for disaster. There was widespread Arab resistance to the Mandate’s immigration policy even before World War 2. When the Nazi holocaust in Europe led to the displacement of millions of Jews, and the deaths of millions of others, tensions reached a flashpoint.

Jewish refugees wanted a homeland – the Palestinian Arabs wanted to keep theirs. Both sides claimed Jerusalem as their capital by right and by God. The ensuing conflict led to the formation of Israel in 1948 after a short but bloody war.

My research for Fury led me to Jerusalem, where I was able to interview people from both sides of the divide. My aim wasn’t to add another history lesson to the canon. I wanted to write about people, not politics.

Book one is the story of Netanel, a holocaust survivor, who has lost everything and comes to Palestine looking for sanctuary. Book two is about Rishou and his two brothers, who call Palestine their home – until it becomes Israel. They are stories about people caught up in history; people who are angry and bewildered by the chaos taking place around them.

One reviewer said: ‘the incredibly dark side of man, his ability to turn a blind eye to evil, his ability to love, and his indomitable will to survive no matter what are all depicted with brutal sensitivity.’

They were confronting novels to write. I hope you take something valuable from them.



Colin Falconer action-adventure books are available on AMAZON in e-book ($3.99 in USA and £2.99 in UK) and in paperback. Most are also in Kindle Unlimited.


‘A fantastic read’. Wilbur Smith.

3,000+ pages.

2000+ five-star reviews.

Translated into 25 languages.



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