Monday, 1 August 2022
Sixth birthday round-up: Adèle Geras, Celia Rees and Linda Newbery
reviewed here by Jane Rogers and it was on her recommendation that I read it. What a tour de force! Daring, original and wide-ranging, it moves from D H Lawrence's death in Italy, back to his stay in a Sussex artistic community and forward to the Lady Chatterley trial. Another thread portrays Jackie Kennedy in the months leading up to her husband's election as President, and her interest in the novel which FBI chief J Edgar Hoover tries to use as a gambit against Kennedy's campaign. Wonderful, eloquent writing throughout. I shall look out for more by this bold, accomplished author.
Q&A with Patrick here.
Herron's novels are the opposite of the conventional spy novel, although he acknowledges a debt to Le Carré: 'John Le Carré gave me permission to become a writer - he showed me you could invent an entire world, invent its language, too.' Like Adèle, I am mighty pleased to see Mick Herron enjoying such well deserved success and thoroughly enjoyed the Apple TV series and Gary Oldman's playing of the appalling Jackson Lamb, the boss of the Slow Horses. Not exactly an overnight success, Dead Lions was turned down by his first publisher. Herron jumped ship, found a publisher who could see the potential and who was willing to give the books another chance. He describes himself as a 'rescue author'. I like that.
Don't miss our special birthday guest post by Michael Arditti!