Ian McEwan is going after religion in his latest novel. The Children Act will focus on the conflict of parents who refuse medical treatment for their children due to religious beliefs. You can expect the book in September.
In the sixties, when he was a student at Cambridge, Stephen Greenblatt came across a book of Persian art. The book inspired a lifelong interest in the region, which in part explains why, after the University of Tehran invited him to give the keynote address at the first annual Iranian Shakespeare Congress, he packed his bags and headed over to the Middle East. In The New York Review of Books, the Harvard professor and Swerve author writes about his experience.