Graham Norton, Close reading Henry James, Michelle Paver on the Himalayas

Mariella talks to BAFTA award winning broadcaster Graham Norton about his debut novel Holding, a bittersweet love story set in Ireland. It features PJ, an overweight and underconfident local Garda officer, who is catapulted from small town inertia when human bones are dug up in a local field. This leads to the unravelling of many long held secrets from the past.

Bestselling novelist Michelle Paver and writer and adventurer Robert Twigger discuss how the awe inspiring landscape of the Himalayas inspired both of their new books, Thin Air: a Ghost Story and the non-fiction White Mountain.

And we explore the challenging writing of Henry James in the latest in our series of Close Readings. Dr Sarah Dillon scrutinises his gothic masterpiece Turn of the Screw.

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28 minutes

Last on

Thu 20 Oct 2016 15:30

Read the opening Chapter of Holding by Graham Norton

Holding - Chapter One

Close Reading from The Turn of the Screw by Henry James

I used to wonder how my little charges could help guessing that I thought strange things about them; and the circumstances that these things only made them more interesting was not by itself a direct aid to keeping them in the dark.  I trembled lest they should see that they were so immensely more interesting.  Putting things at the worst, at all events, as in meditation I so often did, any clouding of their innocence could only be – blameless and foredoomed as they were – a reason the more for taking risks.  There were moments when I knew myself to catch them up by an irresistible impulse and press them to my heart.  As soon as I had done so I used to wonder – ‘What will they think of that?  Doesn’t it betray too much?’   It would have been easy to get into a sad wild tangle about how much I might betray; but the real account, I feel, of the hours of peace I could still enjoy was that the immediate charm of my companions was a beguilement still effective even under the shadow of the possibility that it was studied.  


Role Contributor
PresenterMariella Frostrup
Interviewed GuestGraham Norton
Interviewed GuestMichelle Paver
Interviewed GuestRobert Twigger
Interviewed GuestSarah Dillon

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