An Extract from ‘Choke Valley’

I love stories, be they true, plausible or pure fantasy. As a writer, I occasionally plant a new story in the forest of existing tales. The idea for this book came to me in 2009, the Year of Darwin, when Teylers Museum in Haarlem invited me to participate in an exhibition about two legendary ships:…

It’s the Journey, Not the Destination

On the Work of Frank Westerman It’s not uncommon that a band’s first album is its most exciting. The debut has a raw power. The first light of all the stars that will twinkle in this musical universe can be discerned. Later work may gain in technical control, compositional sophistication and musical depth, but it…

From Africa to Africa

The Return of a Dead Traveller An Extract from Frank Westerman’s El Negro and Me December 1983. In a Spanish museum of natural history, nineteen-year-old Frank Westerman finds himself standing face to face with a stuffed African — El Negro. Who is this man? Who stuffed his body? Twenty years later, the author follows El…