Alex Martin writes fiction and history. His five novels for children, beginning with Boris the Tomato, took big themes, such as man’s relationship with nature, and worked them in a humorous way. His adult fiction is divided between comedy (The General Interruptor) and tragedy (Codename Xenophon, a crime novel set in Greece, published under the pseudonym Leo Kanaris). He is fascinated by storytelling, by the capacity of language to represent experience, and trace pattern and meaning in the randomness of life.
Twenty-five years of freelance work have produced translations of poetry and travel books from French, Italian and Greek, histories of the Air Squadron and the Royal Yacht Squadron, accounts of daily life in the Roman empire and medieval Europe, and a four-volume exploration of the annals of bad behaviour (The Decadent Cookbook, Gardener, Traveller and Sportsman). After a decade of teaching literature, creative-writing and drama, he published introductions to 20th-century literature and the culture of contemporary Britain. He has also presented arts programmes for BBC Radio and made several short films.
Beyond work he is a keen sportsman, traveller, cook and family man. He has lived in Italy, Greece and England, and plans to follow his first crime novel with further volumes.