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“Many children are natural fantasists, I think, perhaps because their imaginations have yet to be clobbered into submission by experience…. The state of childhood resonates with life inside a fantasy novel.  If you have no control over how you spend large chunks of your day… then the desire to bend the laws of the world by magic is strong and deep….  fantasy offers a logic to which kids are receptive, and escapism for which kids are hungry.  As an adult, I read less fantasy… but… both fantasy and S.F. [science fiction] have made inroads into literary fiction and influences even those novels whose imprint logo is reassuringly conservative…. We imbibe more S.F. and fantasy than we notice.  On my last visit to New York, by the by, I had a dinner with a group of literary writers, and the whole main course was spent in earnest and learned discussion of “A Game of Thrones.”

– from an interview, New York Times Book Review October 21st, 2012 p.8

File:Cloud Atlas Poster.jpg  File:Anton Pavlovich Chekhov.jpg

About the author:
David Mitchell was selected as one of the best young British novelists in 2003 by Granta, a British literary magazine and publisher who has created a watch-for list of twenty writers every ten years since 1983.  Others spotlighted that year were Zadie Smith and Hari Kunzru.  He is the author of Cloud Atlas, one of several novels that have been translated into film this year, currently in theatres, with Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, and Hugo Weaving in recurring main roles.  Mitchell has spent time in Japan teaching English and has a great appreciation for Japanese literature, recommending Haruki Murakami, Shusaku Endo, Junichiro Tanizaki, and Akira Yoshimura amongst others.  However, the writer he would most like to meet is Russian – Anton Chekhov – with whom he’d like to play a game of “Anglo-Russian Scrabble.”

– Eleni Anastasiou