Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
There’s a paradox at the heart of my
personality. I am not an extrovert—I don’t love parties and other large
get-togethers. But I do have a limitless curiosity about the lives of
other people. (I’m afraid the word “voyeur” might be applicable here.)
One of my favorite activities is to meet someone for the first time and
hear the story of her life. Perhaps that’s why I am particularly
fond of character-driven fiction. Over the years I’ve gotten to spend
time with some of the most interesting people in the world—Anne Shirley,
Thursday Next, Sam Vimes, Harriet Vane, Kate Vaiden, Mayer Landsman, Jo
March, Miles Vorkosigan (just saying their names makes me smile). In
these six novels, you will meet some of the most interesting and
memorable characters that you’d ever want to spend 350 pages with.