What's New
Niko longlisted for the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Award
I'm thrilled to report that Niko has made the 2013 IMPAC Dublin Award longlist, alongside 153 other international novels!  You can view the entire longlist here.

Niko to be published in Turkey
Turkish-language rights for Dimitri Nasrallah’s second novel, Niko, have sold to Everest, the Turkish publisher of Rawi Hage, Zadie Smith, and Penelope Lively, among many other renowned English-language authors. Publication of the Turkish edition of Niko is scheduled for Spring of 2014.
Nasrallah on France's Tonino Benacquista in the Toronto Star
In the Toronto Star's books section, I review The Thursday Night Men, the latest novel by French author Tonino Benacquista.

Interview: Uptown Magazine

A hard book to write

After years of drafts, Dimitri Nasrallah’s second novel, Niko, is ready to grip readers

By: Quentin Mills-Fenn

Dimitri Nasrallah spent years working on his second novel Niko (Esplanade Books) and has evidence to prove it. It’s a story of refugees and immigrants, a boy and his father who flee the Lebanese civil war when Niko’s mother is killed by a car bomb.
"It was a hard book to write," Nasrallah says. "I did 14 drafts. They’re all in a tomato crate at home."
Born in Lebanon, followed by time in Greece, Kuwait, and Dubai, Nasrallah ended up in Montreal where he works as a music and cultural critic. (He edits the electronic music section for Exclaim!.)
"Niko was the character that was hardest to get," Nasrallah says. "Mainly because I was avoiding similarities to myself, or at least on paper.
"There isn’t a lot in common with me and Niko, except I’ve moved around a lot," he adds. "But in the details. The details stayed with me, and I hope they resonate with the reader."
During their journey, father and son are separated. Niko arrives in Montreal, living with distant relatives, while his father has a more arduous odyssey.
Nasrallah says he found inspiration from an unusual source, American crime writer James M. Cain, author of taut suspense novels such as The Postman Always Rings Twice.
"I saw that pace and I was really curious how he got that momentum," Nasrallah says. "I realized that he never steps away from a character’s motivation. The reader is always attached. There’s really complex stuff there. You feel like you’re reading something visceral.
"If you have a story that begins with a boy losing his mother in a horrific way, you don’t need to spell out how he feels."