The official Russell Hoban website

Welcome to russellhoban.org, providing definitive information and the latest news about the late novelist Russell Hoban and his work.

The Russell Hoban archives

The late novelist Russell Hoban's life's work has been formally archived two years after his death, and is now being offered for acquisition. Writer and journalist Paul Cooper was recruited to catalogue the manuscripts and letters, which run to over 800 items in 21 boxes, and include classic works such as Riddley Walker and The Mouse and His Child. Working at Hoban's London home of 40 years, Cooper uncovered some fascinating items including early drafts of Riddley Walker in standard English, letters from Harold Pinter, an invitation to the White House and unpublished children's story Jim Hedgehog's Midnight Saxophone. Read Paul's fascinating article on the project

 

Selected Russell Hoban quotation

'Modern life,' said Jachin-Boaz [to the owner of the bookshop], 'particularly modern life in cities, creates great tensions in people, don't you think?'

'Modern life, ancient life,' said the owner. 'Where there's life there's tension.'

'Yes,' said Jachin-Boaz. 'Tension and nerves.  It's astonishing, really, what nerves can do."

'Well, they have a system, you see,' said the owner.  'When you suffer an attack of nerves you're being attacked by the nervous system.  What chance has a man got against a system?'

'Exactly,' said Jachin-Boaz.  'He could have delusions, hallucinations.'

'Happens every day of the week,' said the owner.  'Sometimes I, for example, have the delusion that this shop is a business.  Then I come back to reality and realize that it's just an expensive hobby.'

Latest news

Walker Picture Books have issued new editions of two children's books by Russell Hoban, illustrated by Sir Quentin Blake.

Yellow paper with lion, Cape Town 2003, by Lara Hoffenberg

Russell Hoban fans around the world are preparing to celebrate the late writer's words on 4th February with the traditional "SA4QE".

Some of the Russell Hoban archives

Russell Hoban's archivist Paul Cooper has written exclusively for russellhoban.org about his work cataloguing over 800 manuscripts and letters.

Sample site content

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2010 interview mainly about Riddley Walker but touching on other books and the creative process.
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Impact Theatre's 1984 collaboration with the novelist Russell Hoban is set in a post-nuclear world, where brutalised steel and concrete structures rise from a giant pool of water. It depicts six figures lost in an absurd and exhausting ritual, trying to revive a departed civilisation. It was last performed in 1986.

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Captain Najork has never quite got over the time that Tom beat him and his Hired Sportsmen at womble, muck and sneedball, so when he sees Tom hurtle past his window in a two-seater jam-powered frog, he sets off in hot pursuit.

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Sarah Ditum writing in the Guardian says Russell Hoban's 1980 dystopian classic "is unique, melodramatic, and suggests there is more to human beings than being human".
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Review from Frieze magazine of the 2005 fan convention held in London.
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