work of Alice Hoffman, a prolific novelist and children’s
book author, includes fiction such as "Practical
Magic," "The Dovekeepers" and "The
Marriage of Opposites." Her latest novel is titled
64, of Boston, found it difficult to write after
terrorists attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001.
had the worst case of writer’s block after 9/11,"
Hoffman said during a telephone interview. She decided
to reread "Fahrenheit 451," Ray Bradbury’s
classic science fiction tale about a world in which
books are outlawed and burned, but some characters
"Fahrenheit 451," she said. "I feel like
I learned so much. I remembered why stories are
protagonist in "Faithful," Shelby Richmond, is
a happy, straight-arrow Long Island teenager until a car
accident alters her life forever, and she descends into
thinks she’s so broken. By being broken, she’s also
given a gift in a strange way," Hoffman said.
"You do learn something from the traumas you
experience, not that you wish for them, but they are
going to happen anyway."
author loves Leonard Cohen’s poetry, a stanza of which
appears at the start of the novel.
anyone else is going to win the Nobel Prize for
literature, it should be Leonard Cohen. He’s such a
great poet and such a beautiful writer," said
Hoffman. But her highest praise was for Toni Morrison,
who wrote "Beloved" and "Song of
I’m looking for as a reader is to feel something. I’m
much more interested in an emotional novel than an
intellectual novel," Hoffman said, calling Morrison
"the greatest living writer" because of her
voice, language, storytelling and ability to combine the
emotional with the intellectual.
advice to readers: "Find a book you’ve never
heard of and just discover it the way you did when you
were a kid. It’s the reason I still love to go to
independent bookstores. You find books you don’t
believes there always will be readers and writers.
help to run and fund a workshop in the summer for
juniors in high school at Adelphi University. I’m just
really impressed with how much it matters to them,"
she said. "I think there’s nothing like reading.
The Harry Potter phenomenon really created