Authors

Photo Courtesy Augusten Burroughs

It's been ten years since Augusten Burroughs' memoir Dry was published. In that decade, the author of Running With Scissors has gotten married, stayed sober, and written a self-help book, This is How: Surviving What You Think You Can't, now out in paperback.

via indiebound.org

Throughout her career the poet Sharon Olds has been asked if her poems were true or autobiographical. There are poems about mothering and domesticity and eroticism filled with personal details and described with remarkable directness and insight. Sharon Olds has rejected the auto-biographical characterization and resisted talking about her life while her children were young, and her parents were alive. She even kept the disillusion of her 32 year marriage from the public; waiting more than a decade to publish Stag's Leap, a collection of poems that is being praised as the best book of her career, and earlier this month won the Pullitzer Prize for poetry.

Illustration by Sonny Liew

This year marks the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s most celebrated novel, in which Ms. Bennet discovers her true love in a man she first sees as an adversary. Pride and Prejudice has spurred countless adaptations, films, and even a zombie parody…but now Austen is getting new attention not for her romantic prose, but for her strategic thinking. Joining us is Jennifer Schuessler with the New York Times, who recently covered the publication of the book, Jane Austen, Game Theorist, written by UCLA political scientist Michael Chwe.

Images courtesy of Drawn & Quarterly. Copyright Tom Gauld.

Tom Gauld's cartoon panels have been described as bleak, minimalist, sweet and funny. The London-based cartoonist and illustrator draws a weekly cartoon for The Guardian newspaper’s book review section, and has cracked the US market with comic strips in The New York Times Magazine.  A new collection of those strips called, You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack, will be released in the US on April 30th.

David Masters via flickr Creative Commons

Kevin Smokler is setting out to resurrect America’s long-ago encounters. Works such as The Great Gatsby, Fahrenheit 451 and Bartleby: The Scrivener, skimmed and discarded by 15 year-old high school hands in days of yore, are being taken off the shelf, dusted off, and re-explored by the same pair of older, more experienced eyes. By compiling a list of fifty high school “classics”, Kevin spent ten months re-reading the stories that have become distant, unquestionable deities in the eyes of many middle-aged Americans. What he found was profound; and in some ways, unexpected. Kevin, now 39, amassed his thoughts and findings in his new book Practical Classics: Fifty Reasons to Reread Fifty Books You Haven’t Touched Since High School.

Zero-Waste Home

Apr 11, 2013
via zerowastehome.blogspot.com

Many of us have good intentions when it comes to reducing household waste – but too often those canvas totes get left in the closet, food scraps avoid the compost pile, and product packaging fills the trash-bag.  One head of household has found the motivation and creativity needed to take home-waste reduction to a whole other level.  Bea  Johnson is the blogger behind Zero-Waste Home, and now author of a book by the same name. She and her family produce only one quart of garbage per year.

The Burgess Boys

Apr 8, 2013
via indiebound.com

Shirley Falls, Maine is one of those New England towns with a strong memory of the way things used to be…before the mills closed, before the mall went up across the river…before so many residents moved away. It’s the fictional town left behind by a pair of brothers in The Burgess Boys, a new novel by Elizabeth Strout, who won the Pulitzer prize for fiction for Olive Kitteridge. The story centers on Jim and Bob Burgess, brothers whose lives are imprinted by a childhood tragedy in very different ways. Both pull up their stakes and secret miseries and move to New York City….and both are pulled back to their hometown by another family crisis. Elizabeth talks to Virginia about the book and it's connection to Maine.

via indiebound.org

Alex Kudera published Fight for Your Long Day, in 2010, but it’s still gaining traction because of its unflinching look at the swelling academic underclass that is adjunct faculty, recently getting notice from the chronicle of higher education. We spoke with him about the book and the perception of adjuncts in higher education today.

via indiebound.org

Last year we spoke to Jenny Lawson about her memoir Let’s Pretend This Never Happened (A Mostly True Memoir. Since then the book has enjoyed time on the NY Times best seller list and even garnered the number one spot in the first week it was out. Now that it’s out in paperback --once again on the NY Times best seller list, in the number 7 slot--and Jenny is touring the country to promote it, we thought it would be a great time to revisit Virginia’s conversation with her from April of 2012.

Leo Reynolds via flickr Creative Commons

All of the pleasure, none of the guilt. Our Saturday show gets you caught up, in a convenient snack pack size. This week….A video game attempts to replicate the experience of autism; spying in space with the help of spectroscopy; a look back to when Peyton Place was in its heyday, almost 60 years ago; the delicious and sweet tradition of capturing maple syrup; making music by “playing” a tower; and a musician gives a private concert in Studio D, then talks about teenage inspiration and her love of pie.

Lake People

Mar 18, 2013
Karen Bobotas via Random House

An unnamed lake in Kettleborough, New Hampshire has an almost mythological pull on the characters in a new novel by Abi Maxwell. Bodies disappear into the ice, the shamed and broken hearted sometimes float…sometimes are swallowed in its depths. A young woman named Alice, abandoned as an infant, is found floating in a tethered canoe. Its mysteries are deep and startling, the inventions of a first-time novelist who is also the assistant librarian at the Gilford public library. Abi will read from her new book, Lake People tomorrow night at Gibson’s Books in Concord.

The Lawyer Bubble

Mar 18, 2013
thelawyerbubble.com

Since 2004, the number of law-school applications has dropped from almost 100,000 to 54,000, and the Law School Admission Council recently reported that applications were heading toward a 30 year low. Steven J. Harper submits that these declining numbers haven’t emerged from uncontrollable market forces, but are rather a result of human greed and grandiosity that went unchecked for decades. Steven is an adjunct professor at Northwestern University and author of the forthcoming book The Lawyer Bubble: A Profession in Crisis.

Dave Barry

Feb 21, 2013
Monte Bohanan, The Music Hall

The Pulitzer Prize-winning humorist joins us with his first solo adult novel in over a decade – the darkly comic Insane City. The book is a riotous tale of a destination wedding gone awry with Russian gangsters, angry strippers, a pimp as big as the Death Star, a very desperate Haitian refugee on the run with her two children from some very bad men, and an eleven-foot Burmese albino python named Blossom.

Jared Diamond

Jan 9, 2013
David J. Murray / cleareyephoto.com

Jared Diamond, Pulitzer Prize-winning and bestselling author of Collapse and Guns, Germs, and Steel, takes the stage to discuss his latest foray into a field he has made his own -- a biological analysis of human history.

Sean Hurley

Publisher Bennet Cerf once bet Dr. Seuss that he couldn’t write a book using only 50 words.

The words were:

…a, am, and, anywhere, are, be, boat, box, car, could, dark, do, eat, eggs, fox, goat, good, green, ham, here, house, I, if, in, let, like, may, me, mouse, not, on, or, rain, Sam, say, see, so, thank, that, the, them, there, they, train, tree, try, will, with, would, you.

njtrout_2000 via Flickr Creative Commons

In 2002, Concord Monitor writer Mike Pride received a letter in the mail mentioning two pieces of authentic Civil War correspondence. A Civil War buff since he was a teenager, Mike soon discovered that New Hampshire was teeming with historic accounts of the soldiers and families that served in the Union Army. 

dbking via Flickr Creative Commons

A country divided by a grueling campaign season has an opportunity to unite this Veteran’s day.  Remembering America’s fallen turns our minds to the long view…and to historic sacrifices beyond the politics-of-the-moment.

As senior legal analyst for CNN, staff writer for the New Yorker, and the author of The Nine, Jeffrey Toobin knows more than a few things about and more than a few people inside the United States Supreme Court.

Gross America By Richard Faulk

Most everybody knows our country’s diverse landmarks and attractions – the Statue of Liberty, the Grand Canyon, Disneyland – but not everybody knows about the Spam Museum in Austin Texas... or Leila’s Hair Museum in MissouriRichard Faulk is a freelance writer and editor.

David Murray www.cleareyephoto.com

Today, prize-winning author Salman Rushdie enjoys a life in the public eye and a literary career rife with accolades, using his work to examine the cultural connection - and disconnection -  between East and West and the history and experiences of Asian diaspora, all through the lens of magical realism.

Circumstances have not always been that way.

gryhrt via Flickr Creative Commons

It’s not often that we stumbled across a story like the one we found in the latest edition of one of our favorite magazines, Mental Floss. It’s a profile of Alexandra Horowitz, who earned her PH.D. in cognitive science and teaches psychology at Barnard College.

Skånska Matupplevelser via Flickr Creative Commons

There is something mysterious about root vegetables…that show of budding, flowering and forming fruit… ripe for the plucking plays out underground. you see the leaves, and maybe the broad shoulders of a beet, but you don’t know what you’ve got until pulling it out of the ground. Once exposed, we know what to do with a potato or carrot, but little about the furtive burdock root, salsify or malanga.  Diane Morgan digs deep into the secrets of this nutritious family of foods that are low in calories and easy on the wallet.

Marxchivist via Flickr Creative Commons

Author, essayist, and staff writer for The New Yorker Susan Orlean takes vivid snapshots of people who live way off the beaten path.

waltarrrrr via Flickr Creative Commons

Adrian Zuniga is creator and MC of the literary death match – where the stage becomes an arena, author readings are battles, and the warring wordsmiths are judged by a panel of peers.  Adrian has held literary death matches all over the country and on Friday night, the games begin at the Brattleboro book festival

xlibber via Flickr Creative Commons

Producer's note: Unfortunately, technical difficulties on Tom's end prevented him from being able to join us for this segment...but as he's one of our favorite writers, we will make every attempt to get him on the program soon! /RL

Thoreau Remembered

Oct 5, 2012

Henry David Thoreau's death 150 years ago has inspired memorial events in Concord - the Massachusetts Concord - but Thoreau passed through our Concord on a trip by boat and foot that led to his first book.

angelofsweetbitter2009 via Flickr Creative Commons

If you grew up in a religious home with a portrait of Jesus on the wall, he was probably portrayed as brown-haired, brown eyed, and Caucasian.  But have you ever wondered why a Judaic man born in the Middle East would look like an aquiline-nosed Northern European?  Edward J. Blum is a professor of history at San Diego State University, and along with Paul Harvey, is author of “The Color of Christ: The Son of God and the Saga of Race in America".  

This presentation was given at the Unitarian Universalist church in Peterborough, N.H. on August 26. The presentation will air on NHPR at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

From the Monadnock Summer Lyceum:

"Dare Me" is a new and much buzzed about book by Megan Abbott. The cheerleaders at Sutton Grove High have more to think about than their spray tans. Their pretty, hard-driving coach holds the squad in her thrall. She has less control over her own life, which opens up a dark tale of jealousy, physical and psychological abuse, and a mysterious death. 

Aside from reading the book, Executive Producer Rebecca Lavoie watched Bring It On, like, fifty times for  "research":

Bauhan Publishing

This presentation was given at the Unitarian Universalist church in Peterborough, N.H. on July 1. The presentation will air on NHPR at 4 p.m. on Saturday.

From the Monadnock Summer Lyceum:

Pages