Shena Mackay, Can Books Beat the Stock Market?, and American Pioneer Reading Clinic
Shena Mackay is perhaps best known for her novels Heligoland, shortlisted for the Orange prize five years ago, and her Booker-nominated The Orchard on Fire. But she's also been widely praised for her entertaining and often mordant short stories. She talks to Mariella about her new collection of stories, and why she finds embarrassment such a powerful fictional tool.
Divided by a Common Language
This week's bestseller charts are dominated by celebrity memoirs by TV stars and musicians. But strangely, American readers seem to be immune to this craze, instead preferring books about politics and history. Mariella is joined by John Freeman and Joel Rickett to discuss why.
Can Books Beat the Stock Market?
Mariella talks to Richard Davies of the second-hand booksellers' website Abebooks.com to find out whether books could be a better long-term investment than stocks and shares.
The Reading Clinic
Diane Roberts offers advice to a listener who's enjoyed the novels of Willa Cather and would like more tales of American pioneer life.