In 1981, I reviewed Italo Calvino’s If on a Winter’s Night a Traveler for the London Review of Books. (You can find that review here: https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v03/n17/salman-rushdie/calvino - unless the paywall stops you.) Soon after that I was invited to introduce a reading by Calvino at the Riverside Studios in London. I was nervous, because I admired him greatly, and would have to talk about his work in his presence. What if he didn’t like what I said? Then things became worse because he asked to see my text before I delivered it.
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