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Zadie Smith "owes life" to libraries
31.08.12 | Bookseller Staff
Author Zadie Smith has spoken out about the importance of libraries, saying she owes her "whole life" to them.
The writer, whose new novel NW was released by Hamish Hamilton on Monday, was speaking in an interview with Richard Bacon on BBC Radio 5 Live yesterday.
Smith said libraries were essential to providing an “equality of opportunity”, and said: “A library is the most simple and open way to give people access to books.” Talking about her own career as novelist, she said: “I owe my whole life to books and libraries. The library was a place I went to to find out was there was to know.”
She said that the internet could never be a rival for what libraries offered, because the way it ordered information was different.
Smith’s first novel, White Teeth (Penguin), won a clutch of awards, while her second, On Beauty (Penguin), was nominated for the Man Booker Prize and won the Orange Prize for Fiction.