More About the Author
For most of my life I wrote history. As a young man, on the front lines during the Korean War, seeing death and destruction for the first time in my life, I realized that I was not there by accident. I began to consider the historical forces that led large groups of innocent people to kill each other, forces that also expanded the human intellect unbelievably for the good of humankind in the arts and sciences. I resolved to finish college once my service was over and to get a degree in history. Later on, as a professor of ancient history, I taught a generation of students at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I tried to instill in them a curiosity about history and to inquire about the people and events that over thousands of years had brought us all together in that classroom. If you don't know where you came from, I insisted, you'll never understand where you are going, and why.
I wrote several books about ancient Greek history and over fifty scholarly articles. I also worked as an archaeologist in Greece, Turkey, and Italy, both on land and undewater. I was able not only to read about the people I studied but to see their ancient homes, to handle the objects from their daily lives, and to see the lands they lived in. These experiences gave my published work a greater depth and perspective. Thousands of students here and abroad have read my short history of the Greek world, Greek Society, which has been in print for forty years and five revised editions, and is still sold by Amazon, among other booksellers.
But when I retired, I finally had the time and opportunity to write fiction, which I had always wanted to do. My first novel was The Succession, about a political assassination and a president on the run. No one wanted to publish it in 1997, thinking it too far fetched. It makes better sense these days, and I have finally published it on Kindle. My next novel was Dead Philadelphians, and it was published by Capra Press in 1999. It immediately sold out the first printing because of a great review in the Los Angeles Times. For four years the book was optioned to Fox Searchlight Pictures but never made it to the screen. Bay to Breakers was my next novel, about five very different characters planning to run in the famous San Francisco road race. I had also been writing short stories and I published a collection in 2001 entitled Subversives. All these titles are still available from Amazon.
My wife and I had bought an old stone house in Provence in 1999 and we began to spend quite a few months there every year. The history of our region inspired me to write The Grottos of Barigoule, about a terrifying ancient religious curse five hundred years old and still active today. Two rounds of agents were unsuccessful and I have finally published the book on Kindle.
Besides academic life, I have always enjoyed cooking, world travel, sports (including 20 years playing rugby), and playing the piano. I have moonlighted all my life as a piano player in bars, clubs, and hotels, just recently finishing an engagement at the Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara.