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Conversations with Writers: In My House

Tuesday 5 April 2016

1 Hour


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Alex Hourston talks to Jem Poster about her unsettling and highly original debut novel about an unlikely friendship between two very different women.

Fifty-seven-year-old Margaret Benson’s path crosses with that of Anja, a teenage trafficking victim, and her world is radically transformed. As the friendship develops, questions emerge: who is Margaret hiding from, and what are Anja’s true motives? And what is the cost of living a lie?

After 15 years’ writing strategy for advertising agencies, Hourston took a break to go back to university and her first love, books. She completed a masters in English and started a PhD, but put it aside when the idea for this novel surfaced. She featured in The Observer’s New Faces of Fiction in 2015.

Poet and novelist Poster is emeritus professor of creative writing, Aberystwyth University, and director of academic programmes for the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival.