Richard glover and Richard Osman
Richard Glover, Richard Osman
Richard Osman
Book signing time
Two great minds, Richard Glover and Richard Osman
Richard Osman
Richard Osman

There was a very captive audience at Richard Osman’s lunch

At one of the largest Dymocks Literary lunches, organised by the mercurial Judy Benson, Richard Osman was interviewed by Richard Glover, who is the subject of the next literary lunch.

To people who are devotees of British television and games shows Osman is a knowledgable and familiar face. He cohosts the game show Pointless, which can be seen on commercial television.

He has appeared on other shows as a guest panellist such as  Would I Lie To You, QI and the like. In his media career he came late to writing his successful crime novels, the latest being entitled The Last Devil To Die. Whilst many people attend book clubs, these inhabitants live in a peacful  retirement village, four of whom get together to investigate unsolved murders in their Thursday Murder Club.

There is talk that a movie will be made, but Richard Osman stayed away from such discussions.

Osman is very closen to his mother who lives in a retirement village which may or may not be the setting  of the Thursday Murder Club.

When he visits his mother he reassures her that none of the characters in his books are based on her, whilst she quizzes him on the latest celebrities he has encountered.

The other guests of the village ostensibly eshew the publicity the book has attracted,  though they in fact love the attention.

When he visits his mother her elderly, timid and sometimes frail friends suggest to Osman the most ghastly and blood stained murder plots.

Osman went on to say that many cultures revere their elders and include them as an integral part of their family, in western society we shove the elderly in to retirement villages where they become  invisible. Senior citizens feel it in public transport and the like, where people see right through them as if they had no identity.

Who better to solve murder mysteries then four ‘invisible’ and underrated friends.

Osman witnessed a number of people who had various forms  of dementia, yet retained a highly evolved skill, perhaps learned in childhood. Accordingly one of his characters Steven is severely disabled by dementia, yet is a brilliant chess player.

Osman opined that these people have had rich lives and are vessels of history which we do not extract.

Osman treats his characters with a warmth, respect, charm and wit which are of-course vfirtues that Osman possesses.

He was asked why his books are popular in countries that have nothing to do with British culture.

Osman believed that the books were so popular, because they were so strongly British. He stated that he could only write what he knew about and that was peculiarly British.

Osman was asked how he wrote his books and he said that he tried to write a thousand words in the evening and they would become chapters, which gave him a sense of achievement.

Therefore his books have short chapters!

Members of the audience couldn’t help but suggest storylines.

One guest said that she was a member of a book club and a gym club. She asked how could they be combined to create a crime novel?

Osman jokingly replied that if he were a member of a gym club he would be too tired to commit a murder. Furthermore there are several instruments in a gym that could kill you but they are not subtle enough to create a mystery plot.

Another guest, who questioned their mortality, predicted who would die first, who would die second and so on.

Osman replied that if she prediicted the order of deaths and she survived, she would be the prime suspect.

Osman was astonished at the size of the luncheon guests and asked if he could photograph the gathering as it was one of the largest luncheons he had attended. He whipped out a small camera from his jacket and took two photos.

His warmth, wit and charm continued at his book signing alongside Richard Glover who spoke at length to people who purchased his book Best Wishes.

Text and photos by Ben Apfelbaum