The Book Show

Tuesdays, 3pm - 3:30pm; Thursdays, 8:30pm - 9pm

Each week on The Book Show, host Joe Donahue interviews authors about their books, their lives and their craft. It is a celebration of both reading and writers. 

As the son of a librarian, Joe has been part of the book world since childhood. His first job was as a library assistant, during college he was a clerk at an independent book store and for the past 25 years he has been interviewing authors about their books on the radio.

He is also the host of The Roundtable on WAMC Northeast Public Radio, a 3-hour general interest talk show. Notable authors he has interviewed include: Kurt Vonnegut, John Irving, John Updike, Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, Arthur Miller, Stephen King, Amy Tan, Anne Rice, Philip Roth, E.L Doctorow, Richard Russo, David Sedaris and Maya Angelou. 

Joe  has won several awards for his interviews, including honors from the Associated Press, the Edward R. Murrow Awards, the New York State Association of Broadcasters, The Headliners, The National Press Club and the Scripps-Howard Foundation. 

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    Elizabeth Gilbert - author of the #1 New York Times bestseller, Eat, Pray, Love, returns to fiction with her first novel in 13-years.

The Signature of All Things is an epic story of desire, ambition and the thirst for knowledge spanning the 18th and 19th centuries – telling the birth to death story of botanist Alma Whittaker.

    Louise Penny’s New York Times bestselling and critically revered mystery series has been synonymous with the words elegance, depth, and empathy since her mystery debut, Still Life, 7-years ago.

Now, the wise and beleaguered Chief Inspector Armand Gamache faces his nemesis and uncovers shattering revelations in How the Light Gets In.

    Edwidge Danticat has written her first work of fiction in 9-years. Set in a seaside town in Haiti, Claire of the Sea Light unfolds over the course of one evening during which a father struggles with the painful decision of whether to give away his beloved daughter in the hopes she will find a better life with someone else.

    After two acclaimed historical novels, one of Canada’s most celebrated writers now gives us the contemporary story of a man studying the suddenly confusing shape his life has taken, and why, and what his responsibilities—as a husband, a father, a brother, and an uncle—truly are.

Dennis Bock’s new novel is Going Home Again.

  After eight commanding works of fiction, Pulitzer Prize winner Richard Russo now turns to memoir in a hilarious, moving, and always surprising account of his life, his parents, and the upstate New York town they all struggled variously to escape.

Anyone familiar with Richard Russo's acclaimed novels will recognize Gloversville - once famous for producing gloves and anything else made of leather. This is where the author grew up, the only son of an aspirant mother and a charming, feckless father who were born into this close-knit community. But by the time of his childhood in the 1950s, prosperity was replaced by poverty and illness (often tannery-related), with everyone barely scraping by.

    When Clive Cussler published his first novel, The Mediterranean Caper, in 1973, he knew he didn’t want to write a familiar kind of character – no spy or detective or undercover investigator – his hero would have grand adventures set on or under water. Cussler named him Dirk Pitt, and his organization the National Underwater and Marine Agency, or NUMA – and a beloved literary series character was born. 

In the new novel, Love Is a Canoe, partly set in the village of Millerton, NY, Ben Schrank delivers a smart, funny, romantic novel about the fragility of marriage and the difficulty of repairing the damage when well-intentioned people forget how to be good to one another.

Ben Schrank is also the author of the novels Consent and Miracle Man.

    Former Deputy D.A. Alafair Burke’s ninth novel, If You Were Here: A Novel of Suspense, is about Manhattan Journalist, McKenna Jordan.

She thinks she has a scoop when she obtains a video showing a woman pulling a boy from harm on subway tracks. When the mystery woman appears to be McKenna’s close friend who disappeared a decade earlier, the story becomes increasingly complex.

Zadie Smith's fourth novel, NW, is a return of sorts to the voices and the northwest London landscape of her 2000 debut, White Teeth. Her tragi-comic new novel follows four Londoners - Leah, Natalie, Felix and Nathan – as they try to make adult lives outside of Caldwell, the council estate of their childhood. From private houses to public parks, at work and at play, their London is a complicated place.

    Michael Connelly started his career as a newspaper reporter, eventually working as a police and crime reporter for The Los Angeles Times. While there, he covered the 1992 riots – a time and place to which he returns in the book, The Black Box, which stars LAPD detective, Harry Bosch.

Previously aired as Book Show #1279.

At the heart of Rilla Askew’s new novel, Kind of Kin, are social and political issues that continue to rend the fabric of America: illegal immigration, conflicting cultures, the abuse of power, and the tension between faith and government.

Askew has written an investigation of how sweeping, agenda-driven legislation affects real, individual lives.

    

  The Fun Parts: Stories is a hilarious collection of stories from the writer The New York Times called “the novelist of his generation.”

Returning to the form in which he began, Sam Lipsyte, author of the New York Times bestseller The Ask, offers up a book of bold, hilarious, and deeply felt collection of stories, some first published in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, or Playboy.

    

  Ann Hood’s 13th novel is The Obituary Writer.

The story goes back and forth in time between 1919 San Francisco, when obituary writer Vivien Lowe searches for the man she lost in the Great Earthquake of 1906, and 1961 Washington, DC, when Claire, a young wife and mother, struggles to decide whether to follow the man she loves or stay in her secure marriage.

    An extraordinary literary event, All That Is, is a major new novel by the PEN/Faulkner winner and acclaimed master, James Salter.

It is a sweeping, seductive, deeply moving story set in the years after World War II.

    Cheryl Strayed is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller Wild, her essay collection, Tiny Beautiful Things, and the novel Torch.

Wild was chosen by Oprah Winfrey as her first selection for Oprah's Book Club 2.0. It tells Cheryl’s story of hitting the Pacific Crest Trail at age 22, following the death of her mother.

    Manil Suri's new novel, The City of Devi, opens with India and Pakistan on the verge of nuclear war. India is roiled by factional violence between Hindus and Muslims. Bombers strafe citizens, vigilantes settle scores, and terrorists set off dirty bombs around the country as Mumbai boils over with fear and fury. But, at its heart, it is a love story.

  Novelist Meg Wolitzer has written several popular novels including, The Wife, The Ten-Year Nap, and The Uncoupling. Her new novel is an exploration of friendship, coming-of-age, talent and success. The Interestings follows six artistic friends who meet as teenagers one pivotal summer at a camp called Spirit-in-the-Woods.

    Elizabeth Graver’s new novel, The End of the Point , is set in a summer community on Buzzard’s Bay from 1942 to 1999 and traces one family’s journey through the latter half of the 20th Century.

It examines the legacy of family and place and explores what we’re born into and what we pass down.

    In Tara Conklin's debut novel, The House Girl: A Novel, two remarkable women, separated by more than a century, live lives that unexpectedly intertwine.

2004: Lina Sparrow is an ambitious young lawyer working on a historic class-action lawsuit seeking reparations for the descendants of American slaves.

1852: Josephine is a seventeen-year-old house slave who tends to the mistress of a Virginia tobacco farm—an aspiring artist named Lu Anne Bell.

    Jodi Picoult is the author of a string of best-selling novels with heavy themes ripped from the headlines.

Her latest book is The Storyteller, which is about a young woman who finds herself wrestling with a moral dilemma after she befriends an elderly man at a grief group who turns out to have been a Nazi war criminal.

  Award-winning novelist and poet, Stephen Dobyns, returns to the thriller genre after a fifteen-year hiatus with The Burn Palace.

The novel is a blend of suspense, supernatural underpinnings and sexual shenanigans set in a provincial New England town. Dobyns creates an insular community sideswiped by madness when a series of odd, violent crimes occur in rapid succession.

    In his early 70s, author Daniel Klein came to terms with aging. Klein returned to the Greek village and philosophers he has visited for decades to discover authentic ways of aging.

In Travels with Epicurus: A Journey to a Greek Island in Search of a Fulfilled Life , he concludes that old age is a privilege to be savored, rather than a disease to be cured or a condition to be denied.

    George Saunders is renowned for his six collections of short stories, novellas, and his non-fiction essays.

His most recent work, Tenth of December: Stories, was reviewed for The New York Time Magazine with the headline: "George Saunders has written the best book you’ll read this year."

The collected stories are dark yet funny, desperate yet hopeful.

  Robert Crais is the author of the best-selling Elvis Cole novels and was the 2006 recipient of the Ross Macdonald Literary Award.

His latest novel, Suspect, tells the story of Scott and Maggie - an LAPD K9 team nobody trusts--damaged goods who are wounded, scared, and suspect. Who work together to solve a murder and regain trust.

    In 1973 in the offices of The Atlantic Monthly in Boston, a young freelance writer named Tracy Kidder came looking for an assignment. Richard Todd was the editor that encouraged him.

After much success they have written the new book, Good Prose: The Art of Nonfiction, which explores three major non-fiction forms: narratives, essays, and memoirs.

    Insane City is Pulitzer Prize winning humorist Dave Barry's first novel in more than 10 years, though he has been writing non-fiction best-sellers during that time. In the book, Seth Weinstein is on his way to his destination wedding in Florida.

Little does he know what's in store: Russian gangsters, angry strippers, a desperate Haitian refugee and her two children on the run from some very bad men, and an 11-foot albino Burmese python named Blossom.

  Caleb Carr is the critically acclaimed author of The Alienist, The Angel of Darkness, The Lessons of Terror, and The Italian Secretary. He has taught military history at Bard College, and worked extensively in film, television, and the theater.

Telegraph Avenue is the eighth novel by Michael Chabon who won the Pulitzer in 2001 for  The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay.

Martin Amis' latest novel is his 15th work of fiction. Lionel Asbo: State of England centers around a thuggish, yet occasionally endearing antihero, Lionel Asbo, whose last name results from being handed down at age 3 an Anti Social Behavior Order, a civil order issued in Britain against conduct that includes things like begging, graffiti and excessive noise.

Archer Mayor is the author of the highly acclaimed, Vermont-based series featuring detective Joe Gunther, which the Chicago Tribune describes as "the best police procedurals being written in America." In the new book, Paradise City, Joe Gunther investigates Vermont burglaries and a murder leads him to Northampton, Massachusetts.

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