Will iconic images recorded in the grooves of an ancient vase unite the Holy Land or rip it further apart?

THE VASE

A novel by Mark M. DeRobertis

Muhsin Muhabi is a Palestinian potter, descended from a long line of potters. His business is run from the same shop owned by his ancestors since the day his forebears moved to Nazareth. The region's conflict saw the death of his oldest son, and rogue terrorists are in the process of recruiting his youngest in their plot to assassinate the Pope and Israeli prime minister.

Professor Hiram Weiss is an art historian at Nazareth’s Bethel University. He is also a Shin Bet operative on special assignment. With the help of fellow agent, Captain Benny Mathias, he plans to destroy the gang responsible for the death of his wife and only child. He puts a bomb in the ancient vase he takes on loan from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.

Mary Levin, the charming assistant to the director of Shin Bet, has lost a husband and most of her extended family to recurring wars and never-ending terrorism. She dedicates her life to the preservation of Israel, but to whom will she dedicate her heart - the brilliant professor from Bethel University - or the gallant captain who now leads Kidon?

Harvey Holmes, the Sherlock of Haunted Houses, is a Hollywood TV host whose reality show just flopped. When a Lebanese restaurant owner requests his ghost-hunting services, he believes the opportunity will resurrect his career. All he has to do is exorcise the ghosts that are haunting the restaurant. It happens to be located right across the street from Muhsin’s Pottery Shop.



Thursday, October 6, 2016

John Dunn was 100% Scottish Descent

Paying extra attention to improving the John Dunn manuscript has paid off.  I had referred to Dunn as being half Scottish and half English, which was wrong. He is 100% Scottish descent. I had read during my research that Dunn's father immigrated to South Africa from Scotland. But I found no reference to his mother's origins. Until yesterday. I read on some Internet website that both of Dunn's parents were Scottish immigrants.

At first I thought the writer of that article had made a mistake. Dunn's mother's name was Anne Harold Biggar, so to make sure I Googled the national origin of the surname "Biggar" and sure enough, it's a Scottish name. With further research I learned Dunn's mother was born in Scotland and immigrated to South Africa with her parents in the year 1820. So there you have it. Both of John Dunn's parents were born in Scotland.

I've made all the necessary corrections in the manuscript now. There were only two references in there regarding Dunn's parent's ethnicity. The first reference is when I introduce the main character, John Dunn early in the story, I had referred to him as the son of a Scottish immigrant. I've changed that to the son of Scottish immigrants. And later on, when Dunn meets with Lord Chelmsford, (he had two meetings with Chelmsford in real life, and they are both in the story,) Chelmsford inquires to Dunn's British ancestry, after which Dunn now says, "My parents were born in Scotland." Before I had Dunn say that his mother was English, his father a Scot. But it's all corrected now and good to go, at least insofar as that particular point.

I will still improve the manuscript daily and send the improved version every Monday until Dana advises me that edits are underway. Until then, I'll use the time wisely. While I can.

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