We’re fascinated by the curious ritual of reading and how creating time and space to read can be an anchor in our days. We take five minutes with actor & writer Minnie Driver to discuss the importance of reading in her life. The topics of conversation jump from Minnie’s idyllic reading deck at home to her favourite bookshop in the world, from deciding what to read next, to the book she feels most understood by. For someone whose work centres around stories and how we tell them, Minnie sees reading as a way to live many more lives than the one we find ourselves in.
Where is your favourite spot to read at home? What makes it such a good reading corner?
I read on my deck looking out over the Pacific. I like to get up early, wrap myself in a duvet and sit and read with a cup of tea as the marine layer burns off. The best thing about it is the quiet, with the distant sound of the ocean.
What is it about your reading corner that allows for stillness and escaping to another place?
I like being engrossed in a story and inwardly focused on it, but then every time I look up, being met with the vastness of the ocean.
What time of day is sacred reading time for you?
Early in the morning, between 6 and 7am.
How do you display books at home? Do things have an order or process to them?
My books surround my TV, keeping it in its place. And I also have a library. I used to display all the books by colour, which was fun for a while then became too difficult to find things. Now it's all alphabetical.
The elusive question - how do you decide what book to read next?
I pretty much always read on recommendation. Whether from a friend or writer who i've worked with, or someone who works in a bookshop. I don't buy books for myself on Amazon because I want bookshops to stay open.
What is the reason for putting reading at the centre of your life?
My one, actual life is magically turned into thousands of others, with books.
The book you’d most like to pass on to everyone you know:
Send Nudes by Saba Sams
The 2022 release you're most looking forward to:
Busy Being Free by Emma Forrest
Your favourite poem:
An Arundel Tomb, by Philip Larkin
Dog ear pages or bookmarks:
The most hopeful book you’ve read:
Monsignor Quixote by Graham Greene
The book you feel most understood by:
Wise Children, Angela Carter
Favourite bookshop in the world:
The Strand, New York City
A scent that makes you think of home:
Night blooming Jasmine
If you could spend a day reading in any house in the world, where would you go?
Follow Minnie: @driverminnie