What Are You Reading?


“Good writing and good reading will break down barriers.”

—Kazuo Ishiguro

What book are you currently reading?

Eclectic, peripatetic, call it what you will, I have a bunch of books on the boil at the same time, very few of which are new. Right now I am enthralled by two – David McCullough’s John Adams, which brings to life the trials and tribulations of the birth of this country, and City on Fire, by Garth Risk Hallberg, a sprawling story of New York City in the 1970s, which brings to mind much of the chaos when I first moved there from London.

What’s your favorite time to read?

When the mood takes me.

What’s a favorite book or author you like to read – and reread?

For sheer literature and language, rather than unbiased history, Winston S. Churchill can’t be beat.

Do you have a favorite children’s book?

I must admit I haven’t read any recently, but I tend to dip into the Alice books by Lewis Carroll at odd moments, for fun with logic and mathematics.

Is there a classic you haven’t read yet that you’re saving for the right rainy day?

I first read War and Peace, when staying with my grandmother when in college. Over the years, I have owned several copies, having meant to reread it, and then space has dictated their removal. I know I will get back to it some time, but it will take a rainy week or month, rather than a day.

What book do you plan to read next?

I have various ones in the wings, but not yet on my nightstand. Two non-fiction – The Great Terror, by Robert Conquest, about Stalin’s purges in the 1930s, and The Bishop’s Daughter, by Honor Moore, a memoir of her father, Bishop Paul Moore. One fiction: The Sellout by Paul Beatty

Nick Robertshaw and his wife, Nanette Rousseau, moved to Pawling four years ago from Manhattan, upon retirement. Nick worked in the non-profit world, in social work and education.