Philip Mason, a civil aviation expert, takes early retirement and buys a cattle farm in the Highlands of Kenya at the time of Kenya's independence in 1965. He and his beautiful, fun-loving Austrian wife Maria love one another, their cattle farm and their idyllic surroundings. But fate deals them a cruel hand; their house catches fire and everything is lost. Rather than attempting to rebuild their lives in Kenya, they move to Austria. No one in the world could have imagined the traumatic adventure about to engulf the couple. Having bought a dream apartment in a beautiful 200 year-old mansion, right in the middle of Vienna's First District, they live there happily for ten years. Then one day, their house suddenly starts vibrating. Due to maintenance neglect, areas of construction weakness become evident - and the house is moving! Will it collapse? Can something be done to save it? And what about the occupants of the nine apartments in the house? What about their characters? Are they reasonable and constructive, are they uncaringly apathetic, are they tricky, even consumed by greed? And what is their reaction when one of them is murdered? In short, what lies behind their facade of decency? As we progress through the remarkably unusual story of The House in Vienna, we learn a lot about the history, culture and architecture of Vienna, as well as of several parts of Austria. There are also excursions to Communist Viet Nam and the former USSR. The book will appeal to fans of literary, historical, thriller and expat fiction.
In his twenties, Colin Everard went to work for twenty years in eastern Africa. He subsequently became a senior staff member of the International Civil Aviation Organization, based in Montreal, Canada. He specialised in Third World technical cooperation to support air safety. He has visited 50 countries for professional purposes, has lived in 7 and now lives in Vienna, Austria.