iPlayer Radio What's New?
Image for Howard Jacobson

Listen now 30 mins

Listen in pop-out player

Howard Jacobson

Duration:
30 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 02 January 2011

James Naughtie and readers talk to this year's Man Booker prize winner - Howard Jacobson. The chosen book for this edition of Bookclub is the one he says he wants people to read : The Mighty Walzer, first published in 1999.

Peculiarly, it is a comic novel about the joy and despair of table tennis.

It's also a portrait of a Jewish boyhood in Manchester, showing how the main character - Oliver Walzer - comes to terms with the demands of puberty and his sporting genius; as well as the attentions of his mother, grandmother and assorted aunties.

Back in the 1950s Jacobson, like his alter-ego Oliver Walzer, was one of the top 10 junior table tennis players in the country. This is a heavily autobiographical novel from a writer who's has been called 'the master of confessional humour'.

As always on Bookclub, a group of readers join the author in the discussion and James Naughtie chairs the programme.

February's Bookclub choice : 'Blood River' by Tim Butcher.

Producer : Dymphna Flynn.

Broadcasts

Books & Authors Clip Collection

JKrowling

Interviews, previews and reviews

Free download

  1. Image for Bookclub

    Bookclub

    James Naughtie and readers talk to acclaimed authors about their best known novels. Authors include:…

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.