Editor of Vanity Fair, Graydon Carter, is this week’s Shelf Lifer. He reveals a predilection for Herman Wouk, an in depth knowledge of certain sections of the Eaton’s catalogue and a fondness for a particular character in P.G. Wodehouse.
What are you reading at the moment?
Don’t Stop the Carnival by Herman Wouk
As a child, what did you read under the covers?
I grew up in Canada, where the nights end early, and a child’s day does as well. So pretty much all my evening reading was done under the covers. A lot of Hardy Boy mysteries. And the Eaton’s catalogue. For the lingerie ads.
Has a book ever made you cry, and if so which one?
I do recall dabbing an eye while reading J.B. Priestley’s Angel Pavement.
You are about to be put into solitary confinement for a year and allowed to take three books. What would you choose?
Which literary character would you most like to sleep with?
If you could write a self-help book, what would you call it?
Everything You Need to Know About Life You Can Learn From Washing a Car
Michael Gove has asked you to rewrite the GCSE English Literature syllabus. Which book, which play, and which poem would you make compulsory reading?
The Code of the Woosters; The Winslow Boy; “The Shooting of Dan McGrew”
Which party from literature would you most like to have attended?
Something at Jay Gatsby’s place.
What would you title your memoirs?
“Do I Have to Dial 9 to Get Out of Here?”
Which literary character do you dream of playing?
What book would you give to a lover?
The Joy of Cooking
Spying Mein Kampf or Dan Brown on someone’s bookshelf can spell havoc for a friendship. What’s your literary dealbreaker?
Anything with Rush Limbaugh on the spine.