The Russell Hoban website

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

Revisiting a classic interview

On 15th February 2011 Russell Hoban was interviewed by author and broadcaster Will Self. Self had written the foreword to a recent edition of Riddley Walker, and has written elsewhere of his admiration for Hoban and his work. In February 2022 the full audio of the conversation was published on the British Library Player website. A first-hand account on the SA4QE archive site also describes the evening and has a partial transcript. (Photo: Richard Cooper)


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Items randomly chosen from our database

In Riddley Walker, thousands of years in our future, the people of Inland are trying to drag themselves out of the mud. Theirs is a post-nuclear society hungry for a story to make sense of what’s happened. They have no creation myth, only hellish narratives of destruction played out in the Eusa...
The Moment under The Moment is a 1992 collection of short stories, essays and fragments, most of which had been previously published in periodicals and elsewhere. Contents, with comments on selected items: Short stories The Man with the Dagger My Night with Léonie Schwartz The Raven The Colour of...
Summary: Hoban's second novel for adults, Kleinzeit is a story detailing the eponymous title character's brush with illness and creativity. When Kleinzeit is fired from his job as an advertising copywriter, he ends up in hospital with a "skewed hypotenuse", being tended by the healthy and...
The Second Mrs Kong is an opera by Sir Harrison Birtwistle with libretto by Russell Hoban. From Wikipedia: "Glyndebourne Touring Opera first staged the opera on 24 October 1994.The cast included Philip Langridge, Helen Field and Michael Chance. Tom Cairns designed and directed the production, in...
My relationship with Russell Hoban began a little like one of his novels might: in a disordered room in Fulham, piled high with boxes and files. Anyone who has ever seen the inside of Russell's inner sanctum knows that it's like stepping into his mind. Suddenly you're surrounded by all of the...
On a black and stormy night the sea-thing child is flung up on the beach, a little draggled heap of scales and feathers. Although made for deep diving and high flying, he is afraid of the ocean. When he meets a fiddler crab with no bow, these two help each other avoid their fears for a while. But...
Summary: Jachin-Boaz the map-maker lives in a time when lions are extinct. He makes a map for his son to find everything he could ever want, but suddenly deserts his family to look for a lion. His son Boaz-Jachin, pursuing him, finds a great deal more than just his father. Detailed description:...
In Dock 14 (there's no 13); Clever Daughter, a deep-space Corporation tanker, a huge battered thing like a discarded oil refinery all pocked and pitted from the dust and flying debris of seven galaxies, dull metal shining in the rain. Nothing sleek, nothing aerodynamic - it doesn't need to be...
When Father comes home at the end of a sorely trying day, he finds all the family fighting and scolding after a sequence of events for which no one is willing to take the blame.   (The New York Review Children's Collection edition)  
It is perfectly possible to read and  enjoy Russell Hoban’s masterpiece Riddley Walker without solving or even being aware of the riddles woven into the story. You struggle with the language for a time until its phonetic nature becomes clear, and you congratulate yourself for having...

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