I was born in Paterson, New Jersey in 1964 to a family of Russian-Jewish artists. In 1973, my father took the unusual step of moving my family to St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands where I spent my formative years. It is impossible to overestimate the influence the culture, history, geography, and the people of the West Indies had on my psyche.
|Charlotte Amalie harbor, 1984|
My next project, Island on Fire, released in 2018, is a novel about the 1902 eruption of Mount Pelée in Martinique that caused the deaths of 30,000 people. For this historical thriller, I incorporated elements of voodoo and sorcery, cultural aspects which are still potent forces in the French West Indies. The book was described as "a memorable romantic thriller" by Publishers Weekly. You can hear more about Island on Fire here.
|Exploring St. Pierre, Martinique in 2015|
In 2019 I released a collection of poetry inspired by the Caribbean called, On a Moonlit Night in the Antilles. These are poems I had been working on since 2011, whenever inspiration would strike. In the collection, you will find poems about the flora and fauna, and many historical figures and important events that occurred in the Danish West Indies, including the 1733 St. John uprising and the sinking of the Danish slave ship, Fredensborg. There is also a special poem dedicated to Alexander Hamilton, who grew up in Christiansted and spent his formative years working in a counting house.
My next novel, The Lost Diary of Alexander Hamilton, released in 2020, has been called "an engaging coming-of-age story of heartbreak, bravery, honor, and courage" by Kirkus Reviews. It tells the untold story of Alexander Hamilton's childhood in the Caribbean. The story traces his hardscrabble childhood in St. Eustatius and St. Croix, his growth into self-sufficiency and singular genius, and his strength of character in a tale set against the early years of the American Revolution, when tensions were rising in Britain's Caribbean colonies. You can hear more about it here.
|Exploring Fort Christiansvaern, St. Croix, 2019|
My latest novel, The Unlikely Spy, due out in 2022, is a spy thriller set in the Caribbean during WWI and tells the tale of a young widow with a gambling problem who is recruited to infiltrate a German spy ring and finds herself at the center of a plot to blow up the Panama Canal.