In their September 9, 2016 issue (page 9) Entertainment Weekly (EW.com) played 12 questions about books with esteemed writer Ian McEwan, whose new novel, Nutshell, features an unusual narrator: an unborn baby.
Favorite book as a child? The Gauntlet, by Ronald Welch
Book read in secret as a kid? Lady Chatterly’s Lover, by D.H. Lawrence
Best book read for school? The Go-Between, by L.P. Hartley
Book that cemented him as a writer? Portnoy’s Complaint, by Philip Roth
What he’s read over and over? A few Shakespeare plays, like Hamlet (who stalks through the pages of my new novel)
A book people might be surprised to learn he loves? Coma, by Robin Cook
A book he’s pretended to have read? Ulysses, by James Joyce
His literary hero? The hippie-Hamlet hero of William Kotzwinkle’s novel, The Fan Man
His literary “crush”? English poet Alice Oswald
Early works of his that make him cringe? “I neither cringe nor strut, but I stand by it all”
What he’s reading now? The Age of Em, by Robin Hanson; A Peace to End All Peace, by David Fromkin
And what book does he wish he’d written?
“I wouldn’t mind putting my name to John Updike’s Rabbit sequence—in my view, the best contender for the Great American Novel.”