All items: Enid Blyton

Novels, depending on the genre, allow the reader to bring much of their own personal life to their stories, whereas plays are a different beast and rely on a great production and great acting.
I feared these books would be dull, staid and part of the establishment that I was so busy rebelling against; and then I read Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.
I'll never forget the delight of that reverential calm as thirty-five young teenagers sat before me, spellbound, silently turning the pages; each engrossed.

James McConnachie looks back on the gender bifurcation of childhood reading - and reminds us not to underestimate the gender-transcending power of the empathetic imagination.

Mark McCrum leads us into the strange world of the ghost writer, whose perilous path encounters both too little and too much material, and where the famous subjects of ghost-written autobiographies can co-operate or not.

In those happy bygone days when I was a smoker I would wake early, make myself a coffee, tuck myself up on the sofa with a book and read for an hour before breakfast: three fags.
Poetry is a great thing to give a novelist, I think. Very few of the volumes I own are ones I chose for myself. A treasured collection is by Harry Martinson, sent me by a friend and colleague which I'd otherwise never have come across.
Although I had trained as a nurse, to me writing was a white, educated occupation; having read loads of books, it never dawned on me that people of colour wrote them.
I still employ that childhood sweet-shop approach of chancing upon an author I like then consuming all her, or his, books one after another until they are gone.