Playwright, critic and literary novelist, Michael Arditti, tackles deep moral issues in his latest book The Choice which revolves around the rector of an ancient country church in Chesire. She chances upon the chief bell-ringer and husband of her closest friend, fondling a fifteen-year-old boy. Will she choose friendship or conscience, sympathy or her official duty of care? What will drive her decision and what will be the impact? Praised by Philip Pullman for iots important and pertinent themes and by former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, for testing the reader’s own moral alertness for rigour, realism and generosity. The Choice is Michael’s thirteenth novel. The twelfth, The Pretender, draws on Michael’s love for the theatre telling the story of 19th Century child star, William Henry West Betty, and the nature of celebrity, the power of publicity and the cult of youth – even before the age of social media.
His first book The Celibate published in 1993 delves into the character of a young, idealistic ordinant in the Church of England who only discovers humanity and passion when he sent to work among outcasts and down-and-outs. In this Goldster Conversation with Humphrey Hawksley Michael will discuss The Choice, his previous books and the ups and downs in a life of theatre, writing drama for BBC Radio Four, literary reviewing for just about every mainstream publication and novel writing. Inside Story, 12.00 Friday September 8th London time