Michael Ball - My six best books

~ Daily Express- 19/06/09 ~

MICHAEL Ball, 46, is probably Britain's leading musical theatre star having starred in shows such as Phantom Of The Opera and Hairspray.

He is headlining the West Wycombe Live! Festival on June 27. To book call 0500 66 1812.

The Pursuit of Happiness, by Douglas Kennedy, Arrow, £7.99

Set in Manhattan in 1945 this is an epic story about love, loyalty, destiny and tragedy. Kennedy is a brilliant storyteller and is adept at writing from the female perspective.

A beautiful, sad and life affirming book – highly recommended.

The League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen, by Alan Moore, Titan, £9.99

I've got a fantastic collection of graphic novels from the past 40 years. I particularly like Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman.

Both writers have wit and imagination and the breadth of stories they tell coupled with extraordinary artwork make for fascinating reading.

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, by Steig Larsson, Quercus, £7.99

A classic cold case mystery which you simply can't put down. This is a thriller set in Sweden involving the super-tattooed heroine Lisbeth Salander, a decades old crime, family corruption and intrepid sleuthing.

Interview With The Vampire, by Anne Rice, Time Warner, £6.99

Rice's Vampire Chronicles were written in the Seventies, starting with this which is set in 18th century New Orleans.
They all feature the sexy, deadly vampire Lestat, a French nobleman who has been turned into a vampire and stalks the centuries picking his victims.

It made me desperate to be a vampire but so far nobody's offered.

River God, by Wilbur Smith, Pan, £7.99

Wilbur Smith's novels make terrific holiday reading.

This is the first of the four Egyptian novels which are swashbuckling gallops through ancient Egypt when pharaohs ruled kingdoms built on gold and greed.

It is gloriously recounted by the multi-skilled slave Taita.

The Pillars Of The Earth, by Ken Follett, Pan, £8.99

A genius book! This is about the building of a cathedral in 12th century England and all the power struggles, religion and politics that went with it. It's meticulously researched and features richly detailed characters living in a world that's not dissimilar to ours.

I love historical novels and this is one of the best. I've ever read.


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