About a decade ago I encountered Ann Patchett’s novel, The Magician’s Assistant. It was in a stack on a bookstore table and commanded my attention in the curious way that books sometimes beckon. When I read The Magician’s Assistant, I was captivated. How did this novelist paint such a curvy road with so much care and luminousity, yet still hold surprises until the very end?
I reviewed The Magician’s Assistant and then, re-reading the review, thought that perhaps the author might wish to see it—so on a whim, I drafted a short cover letter and sent it away, in care of the publisher, like my grade school teacher taught me.