Ursula K. Le Guin: Conversations on Writing

with David Naimon. Tin House. Jul. 2018. 152p. ISBN 9781941040997. $14.95; ebk. ISBN 9781947793002. LIT
After her fiery 2014 acceptance speech for the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters at the National Book Awards, the late sf/fantasy novelist Le Guin (The Left Hand of Darkness) experienced what she describes as her "whole fifteen minutes" of fame. The literature community and readers alike quickly responded to reaffirm her acclaimed career as an author and applaud her voice as a public literary intellectual. The interviews that took place between her and Naimon (of the literary radio show/podcast Between the Covers) thereafter focus on the author's work and its influences but often expand to both writing and life in more general terms. Naimon is a well-prepared interviewer and asks compelling questions, as the two seem instantly at ease with each other. In light of Le Guin's recent passing, their conversations take on the added weight of the loss of a distinctive, thoughtful, and provocative member of the American literary canon.
VERDICT Readers and writers who have enjoyed Le Guin in her many forms throughout the years will likely relish the intimate insights the novelist shares. That said, the interviews are freely available online for those interested in listening to Le Guin's words in her own voice.

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