What books did you read when you were a child?
I was an only child and lived far from my friends, so I spent most of my childhood alone in my room, either reading or making up stories I’d act out with my stuffed animals. Since that second thing is very embarrassing, and also because you did not ask me about it, I will tell you some of my favourite authors: Lewis Carroll, C.S. Lewis (both Lewises—weird), Robert Louis Stevenson, Louis Sachar (also both Lewises, really), Judy Blume, Ellen Raskin, Beverly Cleary, Roald Dahl, Louisa L. Lewiston.
If you could be a storybook character who would you be?
Matilda. She reads lots of books and can move things with her mind. I can do only one of those things, but like the idea of both.
What is the best thing about reading?
I guess the best part of reading is that I love it. People are probably always telling you should read, but what I think they mean is that if you find the right book, reading it will give you more joy than almost anything else.
What is your all-time favourite book?
I’ll tell you my favourite story instead. It’s called The Nose, by Nikolai Gogol. It’s about a man who loses his nose.
Mac Barnett is the author of several books for children, including The Terrible Two. He lives in California.
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