Just before I return to detailing my journey, I wanted to say some thankyous.
An amazing - and unexpected - part of trip has not just been the great literature to date, but the help that I have received from various institutions and individuals from around the world, in response to my requests for help. In pursuing my travels through places with works not often translated into English, I have had the help and support of the following;
Igor Isakovski (Macedonian poet & author, and founder of the Macedonian cultural instiution: Blesok)
Immanuel Mifsud (Maltese author)
Antonis Maratheftis (Director, Cyprus Library)
Margaret Callus (Assistant Librarian, National Library of Malta)
Adam Abdi (Somalian author)
Adrian Mamo (Chairman of the Malta Council for Culture and the Arts)
Thanks all for your time.
Conversely, I am struggling for suggestions for two of Europe's smaller states - despite applications to their various government / cultural departments and libraries I have had no response... these are San Marino and the Vatican City. I have an idea for the Vatican (a late nineties work by a correspondent based in Rome - so not a native writer - an investigation into a true life murder case within the Swiss Guards... rather subjective but at least it's not Dan Browne!), but am absolutely stuck on San Marino. All I can find are historic books and travel guides, which are not appropriate. Any thoughts welcome!!
PS: review of "The Elegance of the Hedgehog", the French leg of journey to follow, I will then commence from Portugal.