Books and Authors

Books and Authors

This podcast features Open Book and A Good Read. In Open Book, Mariella Frostrup talks to leading authors about their work. A Good Read features Harriett Gilbert discussing a range of favourite titles with guests.

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Recent episodes (10)

  • Open Book: BJ Novak - The Book With No Pictures

    Sun, 14 Dec 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The actor and comedian BJ Novak has written his first children's book. The Book With No Pictures is, as its title suggests, text-only. Despite this it must be doing something right because it's topped the New York Times bestseller list. BJ Novak talks to Mariella about why he chose to omit the illustrations - even on the cover. Peter Walker from New Zealand and Australian writer Evie Wyld have each written about the legacy of the Vietnam war in their fiction. They talk to Mariella about the impact of that war on Antipodean fiction, a war some feel has been partly written out of their countries' history. Ben Elton, novelist, stand-up, writer of musicals, co-creator of Blackadder, shares the Book He'd Never Lend, a comic masterpiece which he loves for its refreshing lack of cynicism.

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  • A Good Read Sean Lock & Roisin Conaty 2 December 2014

    Tue, 2 Dec 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Comedians Sean Lock and Roisin Conaty discuss their favourite books with Harriett Gilbert. One of the novels on the agenda is Margaret Atwood's dystopian classic The Handmaid's Tale, which changed a young Roisin's whole world view. Sean's choice is the Getaway by Jim Thompson with its weird ending, and Harriett chooses Beryl Bainbridge's novel set on the Titanic, Every Man for Himself.

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  • Open Book: Mal Peet on The Murdstone Trilogy

    Sun, 30 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Mariella Frostrup talks to Mal Peet about his latest book The Murdstone Trilogy, his first novel for adults. Beta Life is an experiment which sets out to discover what happens when you mix writers and scientists in a creative laboratory, the result is a diverse collection of short story stories all set in 2070. And novelist Tomas Gonzalas, author of In The Beginning Was The Sea, delivers his literary postcard from the foothills of Colombia.

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  • A Good Read Dawn O'Porter & Graham Fellows 25 November 2014

    Tue, 25 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Dawn O'Porter and Graham Fellows, AKA John Shuttleworth, talk with Harriett Gilbert about their favourite books, including two tales of alienation, Steppenwolf by Herman Hesse and Green Girl by Kate Zambreno, and Nancy Mitford's gossipy tale of adultery and a scheming child in post war France and England.

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  • Open Book: Mirza Waheed on The Book of Golden Leaves

    Sun, 23 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Mirza Waheed is a Kashmiri novelist whose new book, The Book of Gold Leaves, is a Romeo and Juliet style love story set in wartorn 1990s Srinagar. He talks to Mariella about whether he feels a responsibility to write about his home country and the conflict there. Also on the programme, vampire chronicler Anne Rice reveals the book she'd never lend and a new series: Close Readings - examining how great writing works.

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  • A Good Read Doon Mackichan & Jack Monroe 18 Nov 14

    Tue, 18 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Harriett Gilbert is joined by food blogger Jack Monroe and comic actor Doon MacKichan to talk about the books they love, including Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill, The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay and The Sound of Things Falling by Juan Gabriel Vásquez. Producer Beth O'Dea

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  • Open Book: Marilynne Robinson on Lila

    Sun, 16 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Pulitzer prize winning author Marilynne Robinson on her new book Lila, the third novel from her bestselling series set in the fictional town of Gilead. Novelist Tim Parks discusses how, and why, we read. And we visit a haven for lovers of literature in Liverpool to hear about about the joys of shared reading.

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  • A Good Read Roy Foster & Andrew Roberts 11 Nov 14

    Tue, 11 Nov 14

    Duration:
    29 mins

    Harriett Gilbert discusses great books with historians Roy Foster and Andrew Roberts, including Harriett's choice The Buddha of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi. Twenty years on, how does it read now? Andrew Roberts introduces them to Covenant with Death by John Harris, a little-known but powerful novel of WW1, and Roy Foster shares his passion for William Maxwell's The Chateau. Producer Beth O'Dea

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  • Open Book: Jane Smiley; Africa 39

    Sun, 9 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    The Pulitzer prize winning novelist Jane Smiley talks to Mariella Frostrup about her new novel, Some Luck, the first in a planned trilogy. Also on the programme, Mariella discusses the best new writing from sub-Saharan Africa with Ellah Allfrey, the editor of a new collection and Lynne Truss reveals the book she'd never part with.

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  • A Good Read: Eliza Manningham-Buller and Elif Shafak, 4 Nov 14

    Tue, 4 Nov 14

    Duration:
    28 mins

    Former M15 head Eliza Manningham-Buller and Turkish author and commentator Elif Shafak discuss favourite books with presenter Harriett Gilbert. Choices of a good read are: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's latest, Americanah; Michael Chabon's ripping yarn set a thousand years ago, Gentlemen of the Road; and The War Between the Tates, Alison Lurie's dissection of a marriage breakdown.

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