Geraldine Brooks on the Beauty of Implausible Truth
This Week on The Literary Life with Mitchell Kaplan
On today’s episode of The Literary Life, Mitchell Kaplan is joined by Geraldine Brooks to discuss her latest novel, Horse, out now from Viking.
From the episode:
Geraldine Brooks: It’s the implausible truth that I love, these things from the historical record. If you made them up as a novelist, it wouldn’t be very interesting. But because they’re true, it is fascinating.
And in this book, Horse, the story goes in so many unexpected directions. When I set out to write about a racehorse, I didn’t know that it would connect with Jackson Pollock and the Abstract Expressionist movement of the 1950s. I didn’t know anything about the science at the Smithsonian and how that works and how improbable the work they do on bones is and what bones can tell you what stories they tell, and all the different historical figures who are connected with this horse. So it became a very different and much richer book than what I had imagined.
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Geraldine Brooks is the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel March and the international bestsellers The Secret Chord, Caleb’s Crossing, People of the Book, and Year of Wonders. She has also written the acclaimed nonfiction works Nine Parts of Desire and Foreign Correspondence. Born and raised in Australia, Brooks lives in Massachusetts.