April’s guest at The Books That Built Me is Anthony Quinn. He’s the author of several highly acclaimed novels and was for a number of years the film critic for The Independent. I fell in love with Curtain Call, to which Freya is a kind of sequel, when I discovered it last year – imagine a murder mystery penned by Evelyn Waugh and you have a sense of the pleasure of Quinn’s writing. He has chosen marvellous books to talk about and I can’t wait for his Books That Built Me on 12th April.
The eponymous Freya first appears, aged twelve, in Anthony Quinn’s 2015 novel, Curtain Call as the independent, spirited daughter of society painter Stephen Holdaway. She’s a memorable if peripheral character in Curtain Call, and as Quinn says, she stayed with him, and as he began to write the follow up to Curtain Call, she took the book over to the extent that it became her story.
Freya is a book about life immediately after the war when things were changing for women, but not changing fast enough. Five years after the events of Curtain Call, as Freya opens, it’s V.E. Day: in the melee of the celebrations, Freya meets a young woman called Nancy, and their stories entwine over the next twenty years.
You can read the first chapter by clicking the link below – if you like it as much as I do, then come to hear Anthony Quinn talk about Freya and the books that have inspired him: each ticket includes a hardback copy of Freya to take home which Anthony will sign at the salon.
Read Freya 1st chapter