Paul Watkins is one of the greatest novelists of his generation. Rightly showered with prizes and claims he’s the heir to Hemingway etc, I have been reading his work for two decades. We eventually became pals and I managed to persuade this most-reclusive of authors to agree to an interview for a long profile. The material in here was gathered over two years: during a first interview in Princeton University; during a trip to his home on the far, far-reaches of Maine, USA; and finally on a day-trip to his old school Eton. He’s a mysterious and cagey subject – and one hell of a writer. The iconic photo that opens the article was later used by Paul’s publishers as the author photo for his brilliant book ‘The Ice Soldier’.