Thursday, March 09, 2006

Pro-File: Peter Abrahams

Peter Abrahams is the author of seventeen novels, including End of Story, Oblivion, and Lights Out, which was nominated for an Edgar best novel award. He also writes the best-selling Echo Falls series for younger readers. He lives on Cape Cod.

Pro-File: Peter Abrahams


1. Current novel: There are two, actually, End of Story, which comes out
March 28 (Morrow),
and Behind the Curtain, volume two in my Echo Falls YA series, coming April
25 (Laura Geringer/Harper).

End of Story is about Ivy, a young would-be writer who gets a job teaching
inmates in a maximum-security
prison in upstate New York. There she encounters a prisoner of uncommon
literary talent, she thinks.
How can that be reconciled with his horrible crime (to which he pleaded
guilty, by the way)? She begins
looking into the original crime. Somewhat dark in tone, but I had a lot of
fun with this book, especially
writing the inmates's writing.

In Behind the Curtain, Ingrid, the thirteen-year old heroine, gets
kidnapped. She escapes,
thinking the kidnapping is related to her suspicions about the existence of
a steroid
ring operating in Echo Falls. She's right about the existence of the ring,
but wrong about
the kidnapping motive, a costly mistake.

2. What I'm working on: More than half finished my next adult novel, but
I'm under
orders to be cagey re subject matter on this one.

3. The greatest pleasure, for me, is the act of writing itself -
specifically, entering imaginative
space every day. Second is hearing from readers who've been entertained,
or sometimes even
moved.

4. Displeasure: Nothing that rises to that level.

5. Advice for the publishing world: Don't be scared. Huge numbers of
people will always love books.

6. Can't think of any off the top of my head. Ross Macdonald should be
better known, but he's in print.

7. First book (The Fury of Rachel Monette, 1980): I'd been out for my
run. My wife told me my
agent had called, pretty excited. I phoned him. He told me there'd been
an auction and the
winner had bid ... But I'd forgotten the English language and couldn't
understand a word. Auction?
What the hell was he talking about? He had to repeat it three times.

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