"The Forgotten Waltz" by Anne Enright

W.W. Norton Publishing, Joe O'Shaughnessy
Anne Enright, The Forgotten Waltz
W.W. Norton Publishing, Joe O'Shaughnessy

Jeff Glor talks to Anne Enright about her fifth novel, "The Forgotten Waltz."

Jeff Glor: What inspired you to write the book?

Anne Enright: I took a journey through Ireland on Feb 6th 2009, some months after the economic bubble had burst. It was a day of snow, and the country was very beautiful. I thought about new beginnings; how love comes in the silence after everything is finished. And, with that emotion, I had my book.

Adultery is a great boom-time subject. With all the excitement of new money, old certainties fall away and people have to make their own personal morality. The characters in the Forgotten Waltz are not noble, or perfect, or even very good, but they do want to live properly, they are learning as they go.

JG: What surprised you the most during the writing process?

AE: I was surprised by how much I loved Evie who is a child in the book. Gina, the narrator, has an affair with Sean, and Evie is his daughter. The people in the book find Evie a little unsettling, but I know that children are often a canvas we project ourselves on to, and I know Evie - much better than my characters do - and I believe in her ability to make it through. I am not a sentimental writer, but I really do love this child.

JG: What would you be doing if you weren't a writer?

AE: I would be in a secure institution. Or, I don't know - landscape gardening?

JG: What else are you reading right now?

AE: I have been catching up on books I missed from the last ten years: "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson, who is always wonderful, "Cloud Atlas" by David Mitchell which is a complete pleasure, and "Eucalyptus", a lovely poetic tale by the Australian writer Murray Bail.

JG: What's next for you?

AE: I think I'll write another book.

For more on "The Forgotten Waltz," visit the W.W. Norton website.

  • Jeff Glor

    Jeff Glor was named anchor of the Sunday edition of the "CBS Evening News" in January 2012 and Special Correspondent for "CBS This Morning" in November 2011.