Joan Thomas: Curiosity

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It was like finding a fossil in rock when Joan Thomas stumbled on the subject of her second book.

The Winnipeg novelist was researching Reading by Lightning, when she discovered Mary Anning - an extraordinary young woman who discovered - in 1812 - the fossilized skeleton of an Ichthyosaurus. It was buried in the mud of the British port town, Lyme Regis - a place famous for its fossils.

Her story inspired Joan Thomas' second novel, Curiosity, A Love Story.

Joan Thomas grew up on the Canadian prairies, where she was an English teacher and freelance writer and reviewer. She didn't begin writing fiction until 2000, but it obviously suits her. Her first novel, Reading by Lightning, won the Commonwealth Prize for Best First Book, and Curiosity was long-listed for the 2010 Giller prize.

Joan Thomas was in our studio in Winnipeg.

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