Travels with a Typewriter

Michael Frayn
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ISBN 9780571240906 Format Paperback
Published 02/09/2010 Length 288 pages

About Book

In mid-career, Michael Frayn took up his old trade of journalism, and wrote a series of occasional articles for the Observer about some of the places in the world that interested him. He wanted to describe 'not the extraordinary but the ordinary, the typical, the everyday', and his accounts became the starting point for some of the novels and plays he wrote later.

From a kibbutz in Israel to summer rains in Japan, bicycles in Cambridge to Notting Hill at the end of the 1950s, they are glimpses of a world that sometimes seems tantalisingly familiar, sometimes vanished forever.

Michael Frayn is the celebrated author of fifteen plays including Noises Off, Copenhagen and Afterlife. His bestselling novels include Headlong, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Spies, which won the Whitbread Best Novel Award and Skios, which was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.

"All writers of fiction should be required by law to go out and do a bit of reporting from time to time, just to remind them how different the real world in front of their eyes is from the invented world behind them." Michael Frayn

'Whether he's on a kibbutz or a bicycle, Frayn makes acute observations and the writing is enchanting.' Conde Nast Traveller

  • About Michael Frayn

    Michael Frayn was born in London in 1933 and began his career as a journalist on the Guardian and the Observer. His novels include Towards the End of the Morning, Headlong, Spies and Skios. His seventeen plays range from Noises Off, recently chosen as one of the nation's three favourite plays, to Copenhagen, which won the 1998 Evening Standard Award for Best Play of the Year and the 2000 Tony Award for Best Play. He is married to the writer Claire Tomalin.

    Photo credit: Ekko von Schwichow


    Watch Michael Frayn's Guardian interview here 

    Watch Michael Frayn on how he wrote Skios here 

    Watch Michael Frayn's Guardian Book Club discussion on Spies here 


    Michael Frayn's Paris Review interview on the art of the theatre here  


    'The most delightful, sophisticated novel: Michael Frayn is probably England's funniest writer.' New York Times on Towards the End of the Morning

    'As brilliant as all Michael Frayn's work.' P.G. Wodehouse on The Tin Men

    'Frayn has never written more seductively and surely than in this book.' Sunday Times on Spies

    'Fans of [Frayn's] fabulously metaphysical farce will laugh themselves sick at this novel ... Frayn can't write a sentence without making you giggle but when he's in full comic flow he's a miracle of nature.' Daily Express on Skios

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