I'm one of those readers who have six books going at a time, which is why I prefer nonfiction. It's so much easier to jump in and out of. I would never say I've given up on a book—the bookmark is still there—oh, wait, I don't know if I should say this to the nation, but I did give up on Moby-Dick. And I felt really bad about it.
One of the ways I know I've got a great book is when I begin to cry. I just started one like that—on page two I was a weeping mess. I love books where you can't get out of bed. You want to consume them in one sitting, devour them. Those are my favorites, where you've almost abandoned your life for them. That doesn't happen every time, but those are the best.
— As told to M Healey