Having really enjoyed The 3rd Woman by Jonathan Freedland, I’m delighted to be hosting a stop on the blog tour. The 3rd Woman is a thriller set in a frighteningly realistic near-future America that’s been bailed out to such an extent by China, that the Chinese government has a lot of control over what happens on America’s shores. It really was a page turner, and I highly recommend you check it out! And if I can’t persuade you, here’s a brief interview with Jonathan himself about the book. (Questions provided by the organisers of the tour.)
What genre do you like to read in your spare time?
There’s a lot of non-fiction I have to read for my work, but the rest of the time – when I get to choose – I’m afraid I’m predictable: I read a lot of thrillers. John le Carre remains the master of the genre.
If you could have written any book, what would it be?
1984 is the exemplary political thriller: it’s a riveting story, but it’s also packed with so many ideas and so much insight, it forces you to see the world anew.
If you were not a journalist/novelist – what might you have liked to do?
I’d like to have been a teacher. I did some work with kids when I was much younger and I found it unbelievably exhausting – but also hugely satisfying.
As a journalist and broadcaster your work is outward-facing: whereas a novelist is stuck inside their own head for most of the time. Which do you prefer?
I’m extremely lucky because I don’t have to choose. It’s the combination I like. I get to be in a busy newsroom one day, alone with the keyboard the next. And I find one feeds the other, each activity reinforcing the other.
Three top tips for budding novelist
- Read a book you like – then read it again, to see how the author did it.
- In any conversation, with any person, be nosy. Ask lots of questions: it’s how you learn about people. And people are your raw material.
- Keep your eyes open and see what’s right in front of you.
If you were on a Desert Island – what book would you have with you?
Living Wild: The Ultimate Guide to Scouting and Fieldcraft by Bear Grylls
Want to join the conversation? The hashtag is #The3rdWoman and there are more stops on the blog tour below: