Tuesday, May 25, 2010

What is Yann Martel Reading?

I always find it interesting to hear about what books authors enjoy reading. When I went to see Margaret Atwood be interviewed, she managed to mention four books (besides her own) over the course of the interview and Q&A: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson, Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien and Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson.

Last week, the Daily Beast did a slideshow of Yann Martel's favourite books. Now, I would say that Yann Martel has already been pretty upfront about the books he likes - or at least the ones he would like to see Stephen Harper read. The Daily Beast list is really more of a top-5 (although he slips in a sixth), but he still manages to get in some major classics and interesting international authors.

Generally, I'm curious about what other people are reading in general. The reason I like knowing what authors read is because you're so influenced by what you read that I feel like it's a way into their heads. How does their work compare to what they read in terms of style, structure, characters, etc.? Plus, knowing what they're reading sometimes feels like an indication of what I should be reading, and even though my to-read pile isn't getting any shorter, I sure don't mind adding to it.

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