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Sebastian Faulks

Duration:
45 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 29 March 2009

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the writer Sebastian Faulks. He is best known for his novel Birdsong, which told in shocking detail the misery of life in the Flanders trenches. It was published with little fanfare or glossy advertising and failed to win any major awards - but it became a literary phenomenon and a huge best-seller. He was inspired to write it after visiting the battlefields of the Western Front with some veterans of World War I. One old soldier held onto Sebastian's hand and recalled seeing his friend killed next to him and, for the first time for him, Sebastian says, the war emerged from the history books into real, tangible human experience. He concedes that he still struggles to get to grips with much of life. Writers, he says, are often trying to impose a structure on a world that they find generally baffling.

Favourite track: Miles by Miles Davis
Book: Remembrance of Things Past (Proust) by CK Scott Moncrieff (transl.)
Luxury: A wicket, cricket bat, net, an endless supply of balls and a bowling machine that can be set to replicate the style of any bowler

Music Played

8 items
  • Image for Boz Scaggs

    Boz Scaggs Just Go

    Artist: Michael Rodriguez

    My Time: A Boz Scaggs Anthology (1969-1997), Columbia

  • Image for Maurice Ravel

    Maurice Ravel Piano Concerto in G major - 2nd movement

    Soloist: Werner Haas Orchestra: Orchestre National de L’Opera de Monte-Carlo Conductor: Alceo Galliera

    Ravel: Complete Music For Piano Solo, Philips

  • Image for The Beatles

    The Beatles Can't Buy Me Love

    The Beatles: Can’t Buy Me Love/You Can’t Do That, Parlophone

  • Image for Charles Trenet & Orchestra

    Charles Trenet & Orchestra En Quittant La Ville

    Boum! Charles Trenet The Great French Stars, ASV

  • Image for Steely Dan

    Steely Dan Rose Darling

    Katy Lied, MCA

  • Image for Joni Mitchell

    Joni Mitchell Help Me

    Court And Spark, Asylum

  • Image for Miles Davis

    Miles Davis Miles

    Miles Davis: Milestones, CBS

  • Image for Gabriel Fauré

    Gabriel Fauré Sanctus (from Requiem)

    Soloist: Jonathan Bond, Benjamin Luxon, Stephen Cleobury Orchestra: Academy of St. Martin in the Fields

    Faure: Requiem/ Durufle: Requiem – George Guest/ Choir of St. John’s College Cambridge, Decca

Credits

Presenter
Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest
Sebastian Faulks

Broadcasts

Free downloads

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