Sunday, April 01, 2007

Profile: A Literary United Nations in New Jersey

Virginia Rohan, writing for the North Jersey Media Group, recently interviewed , whose latest book, The Woods, is already a bestseller and it hasn't even been released. The New Jersey native's book hits the bookstores in mid-April.

The Woods by Harlan CobenIf the literary world had its own little United Nations, Rohan notes, the headquarters could be the wood-paneled library of Coben's home. There, on the floor between the bookshelves and the pool table, his international bestsellers peacefully coexist in one big heap.

"We're up to 37 languages now," the 6-foot-4 novelist says of the ever-growing number of translations of his thrillers.

She adds that the self-deprecating Coben claims to have "the attention span of a gnat," which he says helps in his writing. "If I'm bored, I'm thinking the reader's bored. I'm constantly trying to make sure that I'm engaging the reader at every level," says the author, who is known for his twists, turns and surprises.

Coben, 45, who was born in Newark and raised in Livingston, came to mystery writing relatively late, he says. His first book, which kicked off a mystery series about a sports agent named Myron Bolitar, came out in 1995. Coben worked as a writer in the travel industry until he was successful enough as a published author to quit.

Coben is already at work on his next novel, to be published in mid-April 2008. "I should be a lot farther along than I am," he says. "I'm only on about page 15 or 20, but I have the idea down."

Read the entire profile on NorthJersey.com here.

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