Annie McDee, alone after the disintegration of her long-term relationship and trapped in a dead-end job, is searching for a present for her unsuitable lover in a neglected second-hand shop. Within the jumble of junk and tack, a grimy painting catches her eye. Leaving the store with the picture after spending her meagre savings, she prepares an elaborate dinner for two, only to be stood up, the gift gathering dust on her mantelpiece. But every painting has a story – and if it could speak, what would it tell us?
Inspiration for Writing The Improbability of Love
The book was inspired by my own love of art. When I was a child, I followed my parents around galleries, making up stories to relieve the boredom I initially felt. If only the paintings could talk! And as I grew up, I found solace in paintings through those tricky teenage years, and became ever-more intrigued by their histories; the stories behind the story. Since then, this idea of the twists and turns in the lives of great paintings developed into The Improbability of Love.
How we value art is a theme I keep coming back to – after all, paintings are just paint and canvas at the end of the day. But we see that prices are in fact index-linked to desire: how much someone wants to own and treasure them. Art is definitely an obsession for many – a pseudo religion almost – and that drives people to do extraordinary things. These extremes of behaviour are a novelist's dream.
It is this desire and passion that carries the heroine of my book, Annie, on her adventure through this wonderful and sometimes murky world, and we are taken along with her on an exploration of desire and loneliness, and the wonder and improbability of love.Hannah Rothschild
# # #
About the Author
Hannah Rothschild is a writer, a filmmaker and a company director. She also serves on boards of various philanthropic trusts and museums. Her features and interviews appear in W, Vanity Fair, The Telegraph, The Times, The New York Times, The Spectator, British and American Vogue. Her documentaries have been shown on the BBC, HBO and at film festivals including Telluride, the London Film Festival and Sheffield. Working Title and Ridley Scott optioned her original screenplays. In August 2015 Hannah became Chair of the Trustees of the National Gallery and is the co-founder of the Artist on Film trust, a trustee of the Tate Gallery and Waddesdon Manor and a Board member of the Creative Industries Federation. For more information visit Hannah's website www.hannahrothschild.com and follow Hannah on Twitter @RothschildHan.