Sita Brahmachari is the author of Artichoke Hearts, which won the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize in 2011, and it’s follow up Jasmine Skies. She lives in London with her husband, three children and a new puppy
Q: What books did you read when you were a child?
A: I was quite late to learn to read, and loved picture books and pop up books. When I did read my favourite books were:
The works of Roald Dahl
‘Alice In Wonderland’ by Lewis Caroll
‘The Little Prince’ by Antoine St Exupery
‘Black Beauty’ By Anna Sewell
Q: If you could be a storybook character who would you be?
A: Alice …. She gets to shrink and grow, and disappear down rabbit holes and take tea with The Mad Hatter. You get the feeling that she could go anywhere she wanted and step through mirrors ( Looking Glasses) into different worlds. I like the idea of a heroine who learns about herself from the journeys she goes on.
Q: What is the best thing about reading?
A: Being transported to worlds beyond your own experience. Recognising your own feelings and ideas reflected in other characters. Stepping into other people’s shoes. Travelling in your imagination.
Q: What is your all time favourite book?
A: This is really difficult as my all time favourite book is often the last brilliant book I have read! However, as a teenager I read ‘Wuthering Heights’ about fifteen times. I loved the intensity of the story. I also was changed by reading Maya Angelou’s novels. I began to understand how reading a novel can fire you up to make changes in the world. ‘A Fine Balance’ by Rohinton Mistry set in India is one of the most extraordinary, epic and humane stories that I have read.
Q: How important is reading in life?
A: Reading is an adventure that never has to end. It’s an extraordinary journey that should be available to everyone. It’s why Libraries are probably the most precious and political public buildings we have. Everyone should have access to reading books. Books can you make you grow.
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