Patrick Radden Keefe answers thirteen questions in a Booker's Dozen.
TPQ: What are you currently reading?
PRK: Trick Mirror, by my colleague Jia Tolentino.
TPQ: Best book you have ever read?
PRK: I’m too disorganized a reader to be reliable with such a categorical assessment but one unshakeable all time favorite is Helen DeWitt’s novel The Last Samurai.
TPQ: A must-read before you die?
PRK: Proust is the rote answer to this one, generally, right? Not sure I’ll live long enough. And if you mean one Others should read before they die, anything by Robert Caro will expand your notion of what non-fiction can do and be.
TPQ: A preference for fact or fiction?
PRK: I love novels but if I’m being honest, these days I mostly read non-fiction that is tied in one way or another to my work.
TPQ: Favourite female author?
TPQ: Favourite male author?
TPQ: First book you ever read?
PRK: Can’t remember, but I was very taken, as a child, with a big book of Greek myths.
TPQ: Favourite childhood author?
PRK: Roald Dahl. (And the anonymous wage slaves who wrote the original Hardy Boys books.)
TPQ: Any book you point blank refuse to read?
PRK: Apart from what I absolutely had to read for work, I’ve avoided reading any books about Donald Trump or his administration.
TPQ: Any author you point blank refuse to read?
PRK: Most of them! But as a matter of taste and time rather than principle.
TPQ: Pick a book to give to somebody so that they would more fully understand you.
PRK: Geoff Dyer’s Out of Sheer Rage.
TPQ: Last book you gave as a present?
PRK: Black Leopard, Red Wolf, by Marlon James.
TPQ: Book you would most like to see turned into a movie?
PRK: The Secret History by Donna Tartt, and The Tiger by John Vaillant. But only if the movies are good. Oh, and The Chain, by Belfast’s own Adrian McKinty (that one is almost certainly going to happen).
⏭ Patrick Radden Keefe is a New York writer.