Where did you get the idea for your most recent book?
In 2003, when the border between the Turkish and Greek sides of Cyprus was opened, I traveled with my father to northern Cyprus for the first time. One of the places we saw was Famagusta, the ancient port of Cyprus, and next to it, the once glamorous suburb Varosha--now surrounded by barbed-wire and cyclone fencing, the largest ghost-town in the world, off limits to any visitor.
I was haunted by the scores of abandoned homes and businesses we saw through the fence, and what they represented; I thought about all the lives that had been upended after the 1974 invasion, and I wondered what would happen if someone tried to return.
I had already been working on a longer project about the lives of ordinary Cypriots who lived through an extraordinary times, and this story fit into that series.
I set the book in the mid-1990s, when tensions on the island were perhaps at their height, and have tried to capture both the bitterness felt at an unjust situation and resilient spirit of the Cypriot people.
I'm looking forward to books two and three that will go deeper into the story.