What was your favourite childhood book and why?
As a younger child it was The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper – I loved the atmosphere of it, and it lasted with me forever – I think it’s a big part of the reason why I became a writer, and why I write the sorts of books I do. The same can be said of my favourite books as a teenager, which were the ‘Gormenghast Trilogy’ by Mervyn Peake. I loved them because I had never read anything as strange as I found them, and I think I have been forever trying to write something as weird and unsettling as these wonderful, and daily neglected books.
Which of your own books is your favourite and why?
That’s an almost impossible question to answer since it’s a bit like asking someone to choose between their children and pick a favourite… But, just for today, let me say Revolver – it was the ninth book I published, and it was the first time that the book I ended up writing was EXACTLY the way I had felt it in my head before I began. Very often you write a book, and while it might be good enough, it isn’t precisely the way you felt it would be. With Revolver, this happened for the first time and it was very pleasing.
Why do you choose to read?
I’m not sure it’s even a choice. I cannot imagine what life would be like without reading, and books, and reading for pleasure. What an incredible process! Someone you have probably never met comes up with something that’s come out of the darkest depths oft heir imagination, and they have turned it into a book – you then read it, and it can make you laugh, cry, be scared, amazed, entranced, transported and generally bewitched. It’s quite literally a magical process, I think. I could not live without it.