The book I love most is ...

A.A. Milne's

Winnie the Pooh

books. They are endlessly hilarious.


The book I'm reading right now is ... L'Ecriture Du Geste - a book of interviews with Pierre Boulez, whose insights into music I have found penetrating. Also Feast Day of Fools by James Lee Burke, but I must say the content is proving exceedingly violent.

The book I'd like to read next is ... there are several by Janet Frame that I haven't yet read and would like to, as she is someone I feel inexplicably close to. I've written three different song cycles to poems by her and think Towards Another Summer has probably the most perfect tone of any book I have ever read.

My favourite bookshop is ... the various Amazon bookshops online and, for second-hand or out of print books, AbeBooks. You can get hold of just about anything and have it delivered to your door for a pretty reasonable price.

The book that changed me is ... the original Penguin Book of New Zealand Verse, edited by Allen Curnow, which contained Richard Taylor's translation of the Maori creation poetry. It spoke to me profoundly. Also Michael King's Te Puea, which first alerted me to the real history of our country.

The book I wish I'd never read is ... Any book I didn't want to read has generally stayed unread.

* Jenny McLeod is the composer of Hohepa, a new opera opening in Wellington on Thursday.