1) You are facing an epic journey. You may choose one companion, one tool and one vehicle from any book or film to accompany you. Or just one of the three. It's up to you. What do you choose? Thursday Next as a companion (she can jump into books - who wouldn't want a friend who can do that?). Tool? Hmm, well the alethiometer from the His Dark Materials books would be useful, provided it would actually work for me, and vehicle would have to be............ the Wishing Chair (I was a big Enid Blyton reader as a child)
2) You can escape to the insides of any book. Where do you go, and why? Hah! If I say "Lost in a Good Book" then I can go from there to ANY BOOK I LIKE! (This is the literary equivalent of the smugly annoying person who, when offered a wish, asks for a million pounds, eternal life and three more wishes). So to avoid being virtually slapped, I will say...........Iain M Banks' Culture novels - a future where all humanity's ills have been eradicated, money no longer matters and space travel is commonplace. Oh yeah.....
3) You can bring one literary character into your current life. Who do you choose, and why? Mary Poppins. I spent this morning with the boys tidying up a small part of the disaster zone that is their bedroom. I have no wish to repeat the experience. Ever.
4) The Crow Road is my go-to book. I could read that book fifty-seven times in a row without a break for food or a pee and not be remotely bored. In fact I’ve already done that but it wasn’t fifty-seven times. It was sixty-four.
5) Of all the literary or film characters that made an impression on you as a kid, who was the most enviable? I really really wanted to be George from the Famous Five. Or Jo from Little Women. (Spot the slight tomboy fixation.) On balance I think I really wanted to be George, though. She had really cool adventures with smugglers and stuff.
6) Of all the literary or film characters that made an impression on you as a kid, who was the most frightening? Dracula. In black and white, with Bela Lugosi. I still have a copy of the original movie poster (in French, 'cos I'm pretentious) hanging on the wall in our downstairs loo.
7) Every time I read Jane Eyre, I see something in it that I haven’t seen before. I dismissed it as a glorified Mills & Boon book when I read it as a teenager, but I am more interested now as a middle-aged wifie.
8) It is imperative that "One Fine Day in the Middle of the Night" be made into a movie. Now. I am already picketing Hollywood for this—but if they cast Bruce Willis as Matt Black, I will not be happy. I will, however, be appeased if they cast Ewan McGregor.
9) Perfume is a book that should never be made (or should have never been made) into a film. Or The Da Vinci Code, although come to think of it, that's also a book that should never have been written. (Like Labyrinth, Jess - I agree wholeheartedly).
10) After all these years, the scene of Renfield laughing when they open up the hold of the ship in the original 1931 movie of Dracula still manages to give me the queebs.
11) After all these years, the scene where Sham, the arab stallion beats Hobgoblin in the book "King of the Wind" (and especially the epilogue) still manages to give me a thrill.
12) If I could corner the author Jeffrey Archer, here’s what I’d say to them in one minute or less about their books (all of them): Please stop.
13) The coolest non-fiction book I’ve ever read is: Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell (it is sort of basically non-fiction with a bit of added......fiction but I still think it counts). Every time I flip through it, it makes me want to: read it again.