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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
8 June 2008
Listen to this programme in full
Susan Hill

Susan Hill on her late conversion to crime fiction; Paul Bailey on the poetic novels of Andrei Makine; and an ex-prisoner explains how life inside influenced his fiction debut.
Susan Hill

Mariella talks to Susan Hill, whose wide-ranging fictional output includes supernatural thrillers, children's books and now a successful series of crime novels featuring the detective Simon Serrailler. She talks about this creation, and why crime fiction is the perfect way for her to express her own fears about the state of the world.

Susan Hill: The Vows of Silence is out now in hardback, published by Chatto and Windus.

Andrei Makine

The novelist Paul Bailey joins Mariella to discuss one of his favourite contemporary writers, the Russian émigré Andrei Makine. A decade ago he became the first man to win two of France's most prestigious literary prizes, with the same book, in the process bringing himself to international attention. With his latest novel newly published in English, Paul picks some of his favourite works from Makine's output.

Andrei Makine: Human Love, translated by Geoffrey Strachan, is out now in hardback, published by Sceptre.

The Last Straight Face

Mariella talks to the authors of a frighteningly authentic fictional take on the criminal world. Eric Allison spent more than fifteen years incarcerated in prisons including Strangeways and Wormwood Scrubs. Now he's the prisons correspondent for a national newspaper and a campaigner for better conditions in British jails. He and his co-writer, the investigative journalist Bruce Kennedy Jones, explain how their knowledge of real criminals influenced their debut.

Bruce Kennedy Jones and Eric Allison: The Last Straight Face is out now in paperback, published by Old Street Publishing.
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