Philip was born in London, and spent part of his childhood in Washington, D.C. After studying at the University of Dundee, he was awarded a Ph.D. from the University of Glasgow for his thesis on Urban Planning and Architecture in Algeria between 1830-1980.
After working in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, he lectured for five years at the internationally renowned school of architecture at the Universidade do Porto, before returning to the U.K. to live in Oxford for three years. There, in ‘the city of dreaming spires’ he wrote his first novel, A Country of Vanished Dreams, which was published by Picador to critical acclaim, and translated.
Philip was the winner of a K. Blundell Trust Award from the Society of Authors for The Fabulous Road, a tale that mixed fact and fiction as it followed the Hajj pilgrimage from Tangier to Mecca.
He also published in academic journals and in The Independent. To help keep the wolf from the door, he taught creative writing for the British Council, and dealt in rare rugs and textiles sourced from Istanbul. In 2004, he was invited with a colleague to design the master plan for a major tourist project in Morocco, a venture, sad to say, the government later put on ice.
Married with two daughters, Philip divides his time between Porto, Portugal and Morocco’s Red City—the inspiration for his murder mystery Shadows of Marrakech, also translated. Next in the series will be Shadows of Essaouira.
In 2019 he was invited to help set up the Associação de Amizade e Cooperação Portugal Marrocos.