iris literary agency

Smells like blood

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This novel is based on the true story of the Germans Herman Duft and Hans Basenaouer, both 31 years old, who arrived in Greece in the spring of 1969, stating that they had come for tourism and business, but over the next forty days committed five robberies and six heinous murders. The police authorities of the Greek military dictatorship -minded, especially, the suppression of any dissident activity- was unable to follow the tracks of the two killers. At the same time, the regime refused to make public the facts so as not to disturb the climate of “law and order” that they had carefully propagandized.


So when finally the details of the perpetrators became known, the “innocent” until then public opinion in Greece was dumbfounded˙ the actions of two Germans, the first and most “productive” to date serial killers in Greece changed  the concept of Greek people on crime. At the same time, the case put to the test the Greek-German relations and rekindled the debate in Germany about the necessity or not of the death penalty.

For the writing of this novel Yannis Ragos spent a year investigating all available sources. Based on this material, he reconstructed the history with the accuracy of a documentary and the intensity of a drama, while exploring the climate of the era of dictatorship at a time when the whole country “smelled like blood”.

The “Smells like blood” is to be transferred to the cinema.

Ragos Yannis

Yannis Ragos was born in Athens, Greece, in 1966. Author and journalist. He has published four books, among them crime novels and short crime stories He has also written television and film scripts. His is in charge of the crime fiction series “Verba Obscura” of Indiktos Publications. Founding member of the Greek Crime Writers Club and member of the International Association of Crime Writers (IACW).

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