According to the bio on his website: "I grew up in London in the 1970s and studied at Leeds University, where I edited the student newspaper. I enjoyed a peripatetic career on a number of Fleet Street newspapers with assignments that ranged from seeking London’s best dry Martini to investigating Nazi war criminals who found sanctuary in Britain.
In 1991, I decided to become a foreign correspondent and moved to Budapest to cover the aftermath of the collapse of communism. I also spent much time in the former Yugoslavia, covering the wars in Croatia and Bosnia. I moved to Paris for a year in 1997 to write a thriller, which eventually became The Budapest Protocol. Over the years, I have worked in more than 30 countries and enjoyed some hair-raising adventures along the way. I now write for the Economist, the Financial Times, Literary Review and other publications."