“Tender and ambitious [casting] a shimmering light on love and memory, life and loss,” reviewer Elizabeth Day wrote of British author Andrew O’Hagan’s latest novel, The Illuminations. As a former editor-at-large for Esquire, contributing editor for the London Review of Books and ghost-writer of Julian Assange’s abandoned memoir, O’Hagan is unafraid to tackle challenging contemporary subjects.
Enjoy him in conversation with writer, poet and New Zealand Books co-editor Harry Ricketts.
O'Hagan speaks of his childhood honestly and hilariously.
" There were too few bedrooms and too many boys. That's the basic sad condition of my mother's life! So she was always trying to sweep us out she'd sweep the floor and then kind of sweep us aswell. She'd kind of wipe your face at the same time"
and delves into certain aspects of being a dad
"My father was always absent. Fathers were absent then. I mean maybe they still are but in Glasgow it was quite regular that business of your father was a surprise to you. To turn up one day not drunk that was the exception!"
O'Hagan charms the audience with tales of his upbringing and his thoughts on being simply human, and how that translates to his writing.