I am pleased to let you know that I was recently interviewed by Harry Johal on Carry On Harry radio.
Click the link below to go straight through to the interview podcast.

Interview with Cap’n Joe

I was recently interviewed by Captain Joe over at MARsocial. Enjoy!

Cap’n Joe’s Interview with a former Saudi Princess’s bodyguard – Author Jana Petken

Can you tell my readers a little about your background nationality/ancestry? Hi Cap’n Joe! I live in Spain but I’m Scottish and British, with a lot of Irish blood flowing through my veins. I guess I’m a mongrel, with various cultural idiosyncrasies. I’m adventurous. I’ve travelled the world, twice over, and have a military police background. I’ve arrested drunken sailors, fought hand to hand combat with them when they refused to go quietly into the back of my prisoner wagon. I’ve been a Saudi Princess’s bodyguard and spent a good ten years of my life in designer clothes shops and drinking cups of tea, whilst wishing for a glass of wine. I was cabin crew for British Airways, worldwide fleet, and ended that career by bouncing my head off a Boeing 747 cabin ceiling at 39,000 feet – And how did that happen? Well, flying into clear air turbulence can drop an aircraft thousands of feet in a matter of seconds. You could say I flew inside a flying machine with a pot of coffee in my hand. Read More

What do we, the foreign visitor or resident know about the Spanish Gypsy? We all have our own assumptions, I’m sure, about their lives, their traditions, and their culture, but do we know them?

The Spanish Gitano belong to the Iberian Kale group, which also includes an extended family in Portugal, Morocco, and France. In Spain alone there are an estimated 700.000 Gitanos, who are now in this twenty first century, living in mostly small shanty towns on the outskirts of major cities. I would like to come back to where and how they live in today’s Spanish society but first here is what I know about them from my long experience and most influential years in Spain; my childhood. Read More

Journalism, a dangerous job

It is sometimes difficult for those of us siting in our homes, reading or watching the news coming from the Middle East, Africa, and Eastern Europe, to fully comprehend the dangers facing the journalists, who report the latest news from these areas.

Last year, 28 journalists were killed, most of them in Syria, Egypt, and Africa. Journalists are no longer a, “not to be touched” group of people and are, instead, now assaulted from all sides. They are killed in conflicts. They are arrested and imprisoned, as the three Aljazeera journalists in Egypt know all too well. They are imprisoned and looking at lengthy terms, unless a massive global campaign manages to get them out.

Read More

BlueInk-ReviewThe Guardian of Secrets has received a coveted red star review from BlueInk.

“Debut novelist Jana Petken delivers a powerful family epic that chronicles the travails of an expatriate British woman and her family during the Spanish Civil War.

Recently wedded, Celia Merrill Dobbs’ initial expectations of marital bliss quickly dissolve in 1912, when her husband Joseph reveals he has married her only to inherit her wealthy father’s prosperous farm in the English countryside. A gambler and drinker with a violent temper, he frequently beats her and soon secretly murders her father. After Celia discovers that Joseph is her father’s killer, she and their newborn son Peter escape to Spain with the assistance of her aunt and family friends. Read More