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In "These Precious Days," Ann Patchett reflects on her life and art

Ann Patchett is the award-winning author of "Bel Canto," "The Dutch House," and 6 other novels. She co-owns Parnassus Books, an independent bookstore in her hometown of Nashville. (photo by Heidi Ross)
Ann Patchett is the author of "Bel Canto," "The Dutch House" and 6 other novels. She co-owns Parnassus Books, an indie bookshop in her hometown, Nashville. (Photo © Heidi Ross)

(This conversation originally aired on December 7, 2021)

Welcome to this archive edition of Midday. Tom Hall's guest today is the acclaimed writer, Ann Patchett. She is the winner of many awards, including the 2002 Pen Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize for Fiction, and her work has been translated into more than 30 languages.

She is the author of eight best-selling novels, the latest of which, The Dutch House, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Her break-out book was a novel she published in 2001 called Bel Canto, which was made into a movie in 2018. She is also the author of several non-fiction titles, including Truth and Beauty, a memoir of her friendship with the writer Lucy Grealy, and a wonderful collection of essays called This is the Story of a Happy Marriage. She co-owns Parnassus Books, an independent bookshop in her hometown of Nashville, with her business partner, Karen Hayes.

<em>These Precious Days: Essays,</em> by Ann Patchett
Published by Harper Collins Publishers
These Precious Days: Essays, by Ann Patchett

Her new book was published two days before Thanksgiving. It’s another collection of essays called These Precious Days. Like her fiction, Patchett’s non-fiction work is musical, powerful and compassionate. She has a great ear, and a quiet, unfailing eye. And like her fictional characters, the real-life friends and family that Patchett writes about are people you are simply delighted to meet.

Ann Patchett joined us on the line from Nashville.

This conversation was recorded earlier, so we’re not able to take any calls or comments today.

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