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In this hour, Just because we've all grown up and aren't supposed to believe in fairy tales and magic doesn't mean we don't still need them. This hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge offers conversations with Neil Gaiman, A.S. Byatt and Salman Rushdie about the uses of enchantment. Signe Pike starts things off with her story about the search for magic. She chucked her job at a NY publishing house to looking for fairies in Mexico and the British Isles. Signe Pike talks with Anne Strainchamps about her novel Faery Tale.
Next, Neil Gaiman is among the most celebrated writers of the fantastic. He's a transplant to the Midwest who discovered the House on the Rock in Spring Green, WI and made it famous in his novel American Gods. He returned there in 2010 for a celebration of the 10th anniversary of the novel and allowed himself to be pulled away from his fans long enough to talk about it with Steve Paulson. Salman Rushdie's life has been a fantasy, but not necessarily in the way he would have wanted. The Ayatollah issued a death warrant on him after his book The Satanic Verses, but it has finally been withdrawn. His new book involves dangers of a more literary kind. He tells Jim Fleming he wrote his new book Luka and the Fire of Life at his younger son's request.
Finally, fairy tales are part of all our lives, whether it's Snow White or Cinderella of Little Red Riding Hood. Old stories like those exist in many versions, in many cultures, all over the world. Writer A.S. Byatt has been studying them, and writing them. She tells Anne Strainchamps these are some of the oldest and most powerful stories we have. [Broadcast Date: November 25, 2011]