One Minute With: Ian Blair
Friday 27 November 2009
Where are you now and what can you see?
In my study, looking out at a very sodden garden. It is, however, brightened up by a winter-flowering cherry, which has suddenly broken out into intense white blossom.
What are you currently reading?
I always have a few books on the go and at the moment I am re-reading John Gaddis's one volume history of the Cold War, while also dipping in and out of Diarmaid MacCulloch's compelling A History of Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years.
Choose a favourite author and why you like her/him
I am very impressed by the long sequence of novels by Patrick O'Brian about the post-Nelsonian navy, not just because of the detailed recreation of the period but because O'Brian created one of the great male relationships of modern literature, in Captain Jack Aubrey and his ship's doctor and British spy, Stephen Maturin.
Describe the room where you normally write
Cluttered with paper, surrounded by pictures that I have not yet got round to hanging, a blizzard of Post-it notes of many colours.
What distracts you from writing?
Which fictional character most resembles you?
To that question, I plead the fifth amendment.
What are your readers like when you meet them?
Very discerning, of course
Who is your hero or heroine from outside literature?
Gill Hicks MBE, who lost both legs at the knee on 7/7. She has no bitterness but works tirelessly to reduce divides between communities, including walking from Leeds to London on her partially artificial legs to do just that.
Ian Blair's 'Policing Controversy' is published by Profile Books
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
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- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 Germanwings crash: 'Andreas Lubitz planned to marry pregnant girlfriend', claims German report
- 5 Germanwings plane crash: Transcript reveals passengers 'screamed for over five minutes' before plane crashed into mountain
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Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Menstruation-themed photo series artist 'censored by Instagram' says images are to demystify taboos around periods
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew