The Faber Podcast
Jilted on her wedding day at the last moment, still wearing her dress years later, among the ruins of her wedding breakfast ... But how did someone born into privilege, who seemed to have everything going for her, end up in such a desperate state of spinsterhood? In his new novel 'Havisham' Ronald Frame (who Alexander McCall Smith has called 'Scotland's finest contemporary writer') imagines the earlier life story of one of Dickens' best-known characters, Miss Catherine Havisham. Ronald Frame tells us more about it on the Faber Podcast.
Paul Auster may be best known for his novels - among them The New York Trilogy, The Brooklyn Follies, The Music of Chance and The Book of Illusions - but he first won acclaim with a memoir, his debut work The Invention of Solitude, which he wrote in the aftermath of his father’s sudden death. Now, thirty years later, Auster returns to memoir - though he says he prefers to think of the book as a collection of autobiographical fragments - with his latest book Winter Journal.
For over 50 years Edna O'Brien has been writing about Ireland - in particular, bringing the lives of Irish women to the page with an honesty that had never before been encountered. Her career began in 1960 with The Country Girls, which caused great scandal in her homeland. Driven into exile, she has gone on to create a body of work that bears comparison with the very best writers of the twentieth century. Publication of her memoir - Country Girl - is a major publishing event, and we were lucky to be able to interview her at her London home in September 2012.
Danny McGuire doesn't like his job, but he's good at it. Since his brother's murder eight years earlier he has become a professional killer: a hit man for hire. Danny's been contracted to eliminate the 'Thevshi' - the Ghost - the most elusive informant that has ever penetrated the Republican movement in Northern Ireland. But there's a problem: the Thevshi claims to know who's responsible for his brother's death. Danny's never killed someone he needed to talk to first ... Revenge and retribution are the drivers in John Gordon Sinclair's white-knuckle debut thriller Seventy Times Seven, which he discusses in our latest Faber Podcast.
Francis Spufford is the author of 'I May Be Some Time: Ice and the Imagination', 'The Child that Books Built' and the genre-defying 'Red Plenty'. His new book, 'Unapologetic' is much more personal and polemical - the subtitle makes plain his purpose: 'Why, despite everything, Christianity can still make surprising emotional sense'. It's an impassioned account of what Christianity means to him as a lived experience, as he explains in this interview for the Faber Podcast.
Do people change their behaviour just because other people do? In his new book 'Positive Linking' economist Paul Ormerod explores how networks - models for human society's interactions - impact on economic policy and behavioural trends, explaining along the way the '50 Shades of Grey' phenomenon, and why Manchester United has become globally successful whilst near neighbour Rochdale AFC is forever floundering.
The 'Big Music' of the title of Kirsty Gunn's new novel is the pibroch, the formal music of the Highland bagpipes, the most intricate and demanding bagpipe music for both player and listener, far removed from the so-called 'little music' of dance tunes and marches. Kirsty Gunn weaves the pibroch's elaborate structure into a remarkable work of fiction, which is constantly evolving and reshaping. It's an ambitious novel that critics are calling a 'masterpiece'.
As a Foreign Correspondent, Channel 4 News' International Editor Lindsey Hilsum has covered many of the major conflicts of the past two decades: the genocide in Rwanda, war in Iraq, Afghanistan and Kosovo, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In 'Sandstorm', her first book, she turns her journalist's eye on the Libyan revolution. It's a remarkable documentary of Gaddafi's 42-year-long reign, filled with first-hand accounts from the Libyan people.
Practising barrister and acclaimed Australian author Elliot Perlman's latest novel is written on an epic scale - spanning six decades and moving from Chicago to New York, Warsaw to Melbourne, and Auschwitz. It's a book about Memory, 'but memory is a wilful dog ... it won't be summoned or dismissed, but it cannot survive without you'. Find out more in this half-hour long interview.
From the frontline of cutting-edge scientific research, Professor Robin Dunbar's new book 'The Science of Love and Betrayal' is a brilliant and sparkling exploration of the extraordinary nature of romantic love. The book tackles some of the most fundamental questions of human behaviour, including - why do we as a species pairbond when few other mammals do? What are the evolutionary advantages of monogamy over promiscuity? And much more.