Fresh for spring: The Bear Suit


Hot of the presses from Open Door comes The Bear Suit, a magical tale of transformation, redemption and release set in the heart of the American wilderness


“Don’t we all, secretly, want to transform? To be a bird in the sky, a fish in the river, a fox in the woods? The Bear Suit explores this very human impulse in original and surprising ways…anyone who has ever gone camping or who just thinks about it a lot will enjoy this wonderful and engaging story about being in nature and the wilds of the American West.”

Sharman Apt Russell, author of Diary of Citizen Scientist, winner of 2016 John Burroughs Medal for Distinguished Nature Writing

About The Bear Suit

“Rollo’s idea of paradise was a wilderness without people, the Garden of Eden after the angel with the burning sword had thrown Adam and Eve out…”

Rollo is sick of other humans. Their cities are dirty, their gizmos are dumb. He knows they’re wrecking the planet. He dreams of escaping to the mountains where he can live alone and be free of them forever.

There’s just one big problem with this plan: Rollo’s hungry human stomach.

No matter how much food he carries in his backpack on hiking trips, he always runs out and has to come back to the “messed-up, man-made world”—or starve.

All this changes when Rollo comes up with a brilliant new way to feed himself in the mountains. But what at first seems like the perfect solution will bring its own unexpected problems and change Rollo’s life forever—in ways he could never have imagined.

Now available from these fine retailers: Amazon USA | Amazon UK | Target | Fiction DB | Booktopia

Inspired Journeys: Travel Writers in Search of the Muse

cover image for Inspired Journeys

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Recommended as one of the top ten anthologies for armchair travelers by National Geographic Magazine.

I’m delighted to have my essay included in this anthology: Inspired Journeys: Travel Writers in Search of the Muse. It is edited by Brian Bouldrey and published by the University of Wisconsin Press.

My contribution to this fine and quirky collection is The Incompetent Pilgrim. In it, I chart my inept attempts at doing artistic pilgrimages. Whether I’m fruitlessly seeking the ghost of Frank O’Hara or accidentally insulting the author of the Divine Comedy, I never seem to get it right, mostly because I don’t know what the heck I’m doing.

No thanks to me, my luck changes when I go in search of Giambattista Tiepolo, the 18th century Venetian painter and subject of my novel, The Merchants of Light.

On that journey, I went looking for facts, but found so much more. My experience wasn’t unique and my essay is in good company in an eclectic anthology of pieces by writers who, like myself, went in search of the sources of inspiration and found much more than they bargained for.


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“In this outstanding volume, editor Brian Bouldrey has assembled a stellar collection of writers—true storytellers all—who describe in the most human of terms their varied pilgrimages around the world in search of their elusive muses.” —June Sawyers, Booklist



Around the World in 100 Books

“Whether you’re an armchair traveler looking for a quick getaway or a restless adventurer who’s already at the airport, these stories are sure to satisfy your inner nomad’s needs…

Inspired Journeys: Travel Writers in Search of the Muse, edited by Brian Bouldrey: In this collection of essays, travelers seek inspiration and epiphanies across six continents. Follow their personal pilgrimages from the Camino de Santiago in northern Spain, to the twists and turns of the Brothers Grimm-inspired Fairy Tale Road in Germany.” —


The Merchants of Light: A Novel of Venice

Merchants of Light Cover Image

Praise for The Merchants of Light

“Few writers bring such skill to writing about art…a wonderfully absorbing and exciting novel.”  Margot Livesey, author of The Flight of Gemma Hardy

“Smart, elegant, earthy, and assured…” Ellis Avery, author of The Last Nude

“Tiepolo lives!” AN Wilson, Telegraph columnist and author of The Potter’s Hand

“Moving, haunting and necessary.” Grace Dane Mazur, author of Hinges: Meditations on the Portals of the Imagination

“This novel made me fall in love with Tiepolo, his family and his world.” Catherine Temma, author of The Priest Fainted

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