The Great American Read

Q&A with Lois Lowry

Last Updated by The Great American Read Editor on

Lois Lowry, author of The Giver, answers a few questions from The Great American Read:

What are you reading right now?
I’m partway through Michael Ondaatje’s WARLIGHT. I admire his writing enormously.  But I’m about to take a trip to Iceland so I’m also reading several books set there (they all seem to be mysteries featuring somewhat unhappy, lonely detectives with hard-to-pronounce names. But they do give me a feeling for the landscape). 
What’s your favorite way to read? Hardback, paperback, or tablet?
I travel a lot and always have many books downloaded to my Kindle so that I can read on long plane trips. But when I’m home, I prefer a hardcover book. Often I have the same book in both forms.  I do like the smell and feel of a good hardcover!  But they’re too heavy in a carry-on bag
When you’re in a book store, what section do you gravitate to and why?
I always go to new fiction; it’s a thrill to discover that an author I admire has a new book out…recently it was Ann Tyler’s CLOCK DANCE, a real treat. And the memoirs…I love peeking into other people’s lives. Finally, mysteries: not run-of-the-mill but the more literary ones. I enjoy Anthony Horowitz’s books. And I hate it that P.D. James is gone. 
Which book character do you most relate to and why?
In British novels, mostly: the introspective, disappointed women in Anita Brookner’s books, or the spinsters in their bed-sits that Barbara Pym wrote about.  Or the murderous landlady in Sarah Waters’ THE PAYING GUESTS…I couldn’t put that one down!  And not a one of them is at all like me. I wonder why on earth I so identify with somewhat creepy loners when in truth I lead a busy and happy life.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in this blog post are solely those of the respondents.

More About Lois Lowry:​

Lois Lowry Active Shot PHOT CREDIT RANIA MATAR.jpg Born in Hawaii in 1937, author Lois Lowry attended elementary school in Pennsylvania, junior high school in Tokyo, and high school in New York. She went to Brown University and the University of Southern Maine, and in addition holds honorary degrees from six universities. Currently she divides her time between Maine and Florida.

Two of her books for young people have been awarded the Newbery Medal. Her more than forty books have been translated into twenty seven languages. Several have been adapted for film and stage, and The Giver has also become an opera. She is a mother, a grandmother of four, and has worked as a photojournalist as well as a writer of fiction.


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