Rory Maclean was born and educated in Canada. After graduating from a film school he made movies with David Hemmings and Ken Russell in the UK, with David Bowie in Berlin, and Marlene Dietrich in Paris. After winning The Independent Travel Writing Competition in 1969, he decided in favour of prose writing.
MacLean’s first book Stalin’s Nose: Across the Face of Europe (1992) describes a journey through Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall. It became a UK top ten best seller. His second book, The Oatmeal Ark: From the Western Isles to a Promised Sea (1997), explores immigrant dreams from Scotland and across Canada. In a way, this is a book about his own roots, too. In his next book Under the Dragon: Travels in a Betrayed Land (1998) he tells the tragic story of Burma and its people. He went on to describe such very different places as Florida and Crete. On Crete he built a flying machine, to follow in the steps of Greek mythological heroes. In 2006 his sixth book Magic Bus: On the Hippie Trail from Istanbul to India was published, and in this book he follows hundreds of thousands of Western young travellers in the
Sixties and Seventies and looks at how these people influenced the life in the countries they traversed.
His latest book Missing Lives (2010) deals with the tragedy of the families who lost their loved ones during the Yugoslavian wars. MacLean has won several prizes and awards. He now lives and works in Berlin where, among other things, he keeps a weekly blog Meet the Germans.
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