Saturday, November 24, 2012

Ben H. Winters

Ben H. Winters is the author of several novels, including the New York Times bestseller Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, and the middle-grade novel The Secret Life of Ms. Finkleman, an Edgar Award nominee and a Bank Street College Best Children’s Book of 2011. Winters’ other books include the science-fiction Tolstoy parody Android Karenina, the Finkleman sequel The Mystery of the Missing Everything, and the supernatural thriller Bedbugs, which has been optioned for the screen by Warner Brothers. Winters also wrote the book and lyrics for three musicals for young audiences: The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, A (Tooth) Fairy Tale, and Uncle Pirate, based on the award-winning children’s book by Douglas Rees.

His latest novel is The Last Policeman.  From the author's Q & A with Ethan Gilsdorf at Wired:

Gilsdorf: How do you make an end-of-days armageddon scenario feel fresh? Just taking the movies Deep Impact and Armageddon, it’s a genre that’s been pretty well traveled. I assume adding in a noir-ish potboiler procedural detective premise was part of the plan to make this new?

Winters: That detective angle is definitely part of it; my goal is that The Last Policeman is successful as a mystery qua mystery, even if you take the whole asteroid-coming business out of it. But hopefully what makes it fresh, even more so, is the level of detail, realistic detail, about what things would really be like, or might conceivably be like, in these terrible final months. I put in a lot of hours on the phone talking to economists, to scientists, to technologists, to create my model of a world on the brink. Just for starters, you’re talking about a worldwide financial panic; you’re talking about a crisis of law and order; you’re talking about a lot of wildness and brutality, but also a lot of good Samaritanship.

Gilsdorf: You’ve probably heard about this new movie Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. What’s with the recurring popularity of the armageddon plot?

Winters: I would say that Steve Carell and I are swimming in the zeitgeist together, but...[read on]
Learn more about the book and author at the official Ben H. Winters website.

My Book, The Movie: The Last Policeman.

The Page 69 Test: The Last Policeman.

--Marshal Zeringue