The Five Questions: Tasneem Zehra Husain

From Jonathan David Kranz:

1. What’s the surprising inspiration behind one (your choice) of the articles or books you’ve published?

ScreenHunter_1244 Jul. 07 20.20This year marks the centennial of Einstein’s general theory of relativity, and I was asked to contribute a short story to an anthology that marks the occasion. While I cast around for an idea that would fit, the song “La Vie En Rose” played over and over in my head with annoying persistence. I couldn’t make it stop, so I finally stopped ignoring it and actually considered the lyrics. The instant I thought about life, seen through rose colored glasses, a vivid image flashed to mind: sunset over the Notre Dame, and two lovers separated by the Seine. Suddenly, I knew exactly what the story was going to be about — redshift and increasing distances.

2. If you could rescue one obscure book and make it more widely known to the world, which book would you choose and why?

The Dean’s Watch, by Elizabeth Goudge. Goudge is one of the last Victorian authors, and even though the undertones of faith in her books don’t always sit well with a modern audience, her writing has a lyrical beauty that is timeless. She has a flair for description, and picking just the right detail to zoom in on. She shows an incredible depth of understanding, and compassion, for each of her characters and her ability to completely inhabit their various perspectives is astounding. Her stories feel quiet and restful, there’s no high drama anywhere – yet they keep you engaged while you read them, and stay with you afterwards. I love most of her work, but The Dean’s Watch is up there at the top of my list, so that’s the one I would rescue from obscurity if I could.

More here.