I worked at a department store one holiday; like Domhnall Gleeson in this image from the set of Brooklyn, we had to carry our belongings in little plastic bags. What the actor carries in his is fascinating. A pack of Marlborough cigarettes - don't judge the man - and a book. That's the interesting part. It's John Banville's The Book of Evidence. Here's what that novel, shortlisted for the Booker Prize, is about -
Freddie Montgomery is a highly cultured man, a husband and father living the life of a dissolute exile on a Mediterranean island. When a debt comes due and his wife and child are held as collateral, he returns to Ireland to secure funds. That pursuit leads to murder. And here is his attempt to present evidence, not of his innocence, but of his life, of the events that lead to the murder he committed because he could. Like a hero out of Nabokov or Camus, Montgomery is a chillingly articulate, self-aware, and amoral being, whose humanity is painfully on display.
I love catching Gleeson in the act, not of smoking, but of reading. Well, if not in the act, at least with the clear intention of reading. In fact, I'm thinking of making it my mission to expose the secret reading habits of the stars! No, seriously, despite outdated stereotypes about their lack of intellect, the best actors read widely. The question is, what are they reading. Do you know what your favorite actor is reading right now? Please share.