Interview with AJ Lewis, Author of A Graveyard in Algiers

20 Feb 2024

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write A Graveyard in Algiers?

As an advocate for cultural diversity, a student of history, and a traveler who has spent time in North Africa, I cannot ignore how terribly history has mistreated Algeria, calling its people Barbary Pirates and, most recently, rewriting history to say that the Algerians were the first Islamic terrorists. This explains why my protagonist is an outsider with a clear and unbiased perspective.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

I enjoy all genres, though I avoid horror because the trend is toward gore and depravity. Even so, I like post-apocalyptic stories, crime, and mysteries; particularly those set outside Europe and the USA.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

Hurst by Robin Crumby; The Light We Lost by Kyla Stone; A Mumbai Murder Mystery by Meeti Shroff-Shah; The Verifiers by Jane Pek; Blackwater Falls by Ausma Z. Khan.

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

Witness testimony by those who attended the exorcism at the Villa Suwaylim in A Graveyard in Algiers. Unfortunately, much if not most of that eyewitness testimony had to be deleted owing to its length.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

I listen to the sort of music that is played at theaters while the closing credits run.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

People fear what they don’t understand.

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

I’d like people to relish the experience of reading a story that gave them pleasure. At the same time, if it provokes thought, then all the better.


AJ Lewis is the author of the new book A Graveyard in Algiers

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Author Site

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