Frank Gardner. I’ve admired his journalism, and indeed his courage, for many years.
Which book has inspired you the most?
How to pick one out of so many? I’ll opt for Bleak House by Charles Dickens, a fascinating book on many levels. Among crime novels, I’m tempted to mention Malice Aforethought by the brilliant Francis Iles, in its day a truly ground-breaking novel about a murderer.
What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
Sneak a look at the alarm clock, wondering if it really is time to get up yet. I’m afraid I’m an owl, not a lark…
What is your life’s motto?
Life is short: make the most of it.
Our theme for the 2017 Festival is Journeys. Can you tell us which journeys in your life have been most memorable?
Taking the Orient Express from Venice to England, and another train journey, this time from Ollantaytambo in Peru to Machu Picchu, through the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Both in their different ways utterly memorable, journeys not only because of the landscapes, but also because of their historic and cultural associations. And finally, taking a cruise up the coast of Norway to the North Cape and the Russian border, seeing the Northern Lights en route: never been as cold in my life, but again the scenery was stunning and it was certainly unforgettable!