I was raised with books - my grandfather ran a mobile library in Birmingham and my parents inherited a random selection of the books. They weren't much interested in them; the books were piled up in a box room, gathering dust. I would disappear in there and resurrect much used classics - Zane Gray 'Riders of the Purple Sage', H G Wells 'The Invisible Man', Charles Dickens 'A Tale of Two Cities' and more obscure stuff that I don't now recall. I was hooked.
There was gap, a long gap, until I was lucky enough to find an inspirational school teacher. He donated his own books to make a lending library in a stock cupboard off the classroom. Kids queued to borrow the books. Except these were the classics - Franz Kafka 'Metamorphosis' and 'The Trial', George Orwell '1984' and 'Animal Farm', Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn 'One Day In The Life of Ivan Denisovich', Ray Bradbury 'Fahrenheit 451', Boris Pasternak 'Dr Zhivago', Arthur Koestler 'Darkness At Noon', Vladimir Nabokov 'Pale Fire', Ken Kesey 'One Flew Over the Cookoo's Nest', Aldous Huxley 'Brave New World'.............
I've been an avid reader ever since.
Writing. Jazz (Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, their modern day musical descendents). Writing about jazz. Science. Travel. Favorite places (in no particular order): Venice, Florence, San Francisco, San Diego, Boston, New York, London, The English Lake District, Paris, Lisbon, Crete.