BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

Accessibility help
Text only
BBC Homepage
BBC Radio
BBC Radio 4 - 92 to 94 FM and 198 Long WaveListen to Digital Radio, Digital TV and OnlineListen on Digital Radio, Digital TV and Online

Radio 4 Tickets
Radio 4 Help

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!


Go to the Listen Again page
Open Book banner
Sunday 16:00-16:30, repeated Thursday 16:00-16:30, except first Sunday in the month when it is replaced by Book Club.
Open Book spotlights new fiction and non-fiction, picks out the best of the paperbacks, talks to authors and publishers, and unearths lost masterpieces.
This week
Sunday 24 September 2006
Listen to this programme in full
Nick Hornby
Novelist Nick Hornby, who talks about publishing his diary of all that he's read and enjoyed over the past three years. 
Writing about reading
In The Complete Polysyllabic Spree novelist Nick Hornby has written an account of all the books he bought and read over the course of a year, and admits that sometimes he even leaves books unfinished. He joins Mariella and Professor John Mullan, who is publishing his own book about books - How Novels Work - to discuss the pleasures of reading.

Nick Hornby: The Complete Polysyllabic Spree
Publisher: Viking
ISBN : 0670916668

John Mullan: How Novels Work
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199281777

Christopher Hope
The South African novelist Christoper Hope talks to Mariella about his new book My Mother's Lovers, the story of Alex Healey and his adventurous pilot mother, which is also an angry satire about the state of contemporary South Africa .

Christopher Hope: My Mother's Lovers
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic
ISBN: 1843543826

Christopher Hope: White Boy Running
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
ISBN: 0330418343

Christopher Hope: Serenity House
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
ISBN: 0330330284

As the boom in publishing - especially self publishing - on the internet, and books being made available online, calls into question laws of copyright and ownership the British Council has organised a debate about the future of creativity and author rights. Rosemary Bechler has written a short book on the subject - which will only be available online.

Unbounded Freedom' by Rosemary Bechler is available to download under a Creative Commons license from

Fun Home
Cartoonist Alison Bechdel has written a memoir of her troubled childhood - her father's suicide and her own struggles with her sexuality - in the form of a graphic novel which includes quotes from Fitzgerald, Kafka and Proust, excerpts from her own teenage diary and reproductions of letters her father sent to her at college. She talks to Mariella about sharing her intimate family secrets with the world. 

Alison Bechdel: Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0224080512

E-mail Open Book with your queries or comments about the programme.

Listen Live
Audio Help

Open Book

Mariella Frostrup

Arts message boards

Drama and Readings

Join the discussion: share your critique of recent drama on Radio 4.


Art, literature, poetry, film, music: tell us what's caught your ear.

See also

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy