What was your favourite childhood book and why?
Hard to pick out just one, but I really loved Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh. I loved it because the children in the book and their struggles and friendships felt utterly, authentically real, and were written with real sympathy and astuteness.
Which of your own books is your favourite and why?
Starboard – the plot and the theme and the characters were quite an ambitious choice for me, and I think I made the book do what I wanted to do. It was so important to me to get the book right, and I think I just about did that.
Why do you choose to read?
Reading for pleasure does many things at once, I find. It can soothe you, entertain you, comfort you, enlighten you and educate you; it can give you what you most need, at any given time. Next to love, it’s the most magical thing in the world.