While it may not be seasonally appropriate, The Snow Queen is sublimely beautiful, desperately poignant and highly deserving of a spot on your summer read list. Michael Cunningham was kind enough to submit to our questioning when he was last in London – click below to hear the interview. Read more…
Amy Tan’s latest novel, The Valley of Amazement, is the perfect kind of paperback for a holiday in the sun – an epic of love, heartbreak and betrayal told over three generations. In November last year Amy was invited to speak on Radio 4’s ‘Woman’s Hour’, to talk about the inspirations behind the book. The following is a transcript of that interview.
On Tuesday evening, despite occupying a position of near complete ignorance on the subject, I attempted to explain the concept of geocaching to a friend. As far as I understand, someone hides something somewhere out of the way, posts the location someplace online and waits for someone else to find it. I went on to say that the treasure might not be valuable in a monetary sense, and at that, my friend’s interest waned even more.
On an endless-seeming train journey, as dusk falls and the amber lights of the passing stations recede into the gloom, there’s no better way to stave off night-time’s creeping chill than with a classic Christie or Conan Doyle. But while many readers take pleasure in attempting to solve their mysteries, I cannot claim to be one of them.
Central Park is New York City’s winter preserve. Whenever it snows here – and it does snow, though infrequently – the snow that falls on the rest of the city remains white and pristine for about half an hour, if that. It is then quickly transformed, by snowplows, into sooty curbside icebergs, more black and gray than white, littered with cigarette butts, gum wrappers, and dog urine. Only in Central Park does the snow remain pristine, and free of trash. Only in Central park are there fields of sparkling white during the days and, at night (my own favorite), little illuminated circles of snow at the base of every lamppost. When it snows I, along with many other New Yorkers, flock to Central Park like pilgrims to a shrine.
The Snow Queen is out now. Find out more here.