Tag Archives: Catch 22

What Writers Read

This Christmas a writer friend has given me a fascinating little book called What Writers Read. It’s one of those charity collections – in this case to support the National Literary Trust – in which a bunch of supporters get together to produce something to promote the cause and raise funds.

This time it is 35 essays by various writers, some of whom I have been reading most of my life, some I’ve never heard of, about their experience of reading their favourite book. And most of the pieces I have read so far are genuinely about the experience.

What Writers Read –  Discovery

Oh, they talk about their chosen book, of course they do. But these are not puffs for the beloved tome. Even less are they weighty reviews, weighing plot, character and impact.

For instance, William Boyd on Catch 22 assumes we will already know the book. And on that basis, he  gives us a chilling insight into his teenage self going home to a war zone. I sat up straighter in the chair, gripped by anxiety, as he described going round the book store at Heathrow. Continue reading