Literary Potpourri ~ August 29 and 30

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“Barbarian Days” by William Finnegan
“Paper Towns” by John Green
“The Jezebel Remedy” by Martin Clark
“Wicked Charms” by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton
“Crooked” by Austin Grossman
“Oregon Trail” by Rinker Buck
“Fatty O’Leary’s Dinner Party” by Alexander McCall Smith

INTERVIEW
Patrick Nolan, Associate Publisher and Editor in Chief, Penguin Books

TUNE IN TO THE PROGRAM FOR
A preview of the summer’s hottest books in wide range of genres: fiction, nonfiction, travel and occult. Elaine speaks with Patrick Nolan of Penguin Books about the publishing house’s distinguished 80 year anniversary.

Listen to The Book Report at your convenience. Go to https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-book-report/id540205917?mt=2, or at bookreportradio.com, click on Archived Shows

Books On Crooks ~ Show August 22 and 23

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“Grandissimo” by David G Schwartz
“Blood Aces” by Doug Swanson
“Spam Nation” by Brian Krebs
“The Cartel” by Don Winslow
“The Marauders” by Tom Cooper
“Gangland New York” by Anthony DeStefano
“A Man Without Breath” by Philip Kerr

INTERVIEW
Doug Swanson, Author

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Books on crooks offers up a literary look at the dons, godfathers and swindlers – from Vegas to the Big Apple – who made mob history. We’ll preview new nonfiction and fiction about flawed, fascinating men, including a riveting bio on Benny Binion by this week’s guest, Doug Swanson.

Listen to The Book Report at your convenience. Go to https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-book-report/id540205917?mt=2, or at bookreportradio.com, click on Archived Shows

Spies, Detectives and Cops ~ Show August 15 and 16

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“The English Spy” by Daniel Silva
“Die Again” by Tess Gerritsen
“Thin Air” by Ann Cleeves
“Devil’s Bridge” by Linda Fairstein
“Nemesis” by Catherine Coulter
“Palace of Treason” by Jason Matthews
“Code of Conduct” by Brad Thor

INTERVIEW
Tess Gerritsen, Author

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As summer winds down, publishers offer up a super selection of one of our favorite beach-worthy genres: spies, detectives and cops. Tess Gerritsen stops by to chat about two subjects she’s passionate about: her Alzheimer’s Research support initiative and her new Rizzoli and Isles adventure.

Listen to The Book Report at your convenience. Go to https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-book-report/id540205917?mt=2, or at bookreportradio.com, click on Archived Shows

Perfect For Summer Reading ~ Show August 8 and 9

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“The Little Paris Bookshop” by Nina George
“The Position” by Meg Wolitzer
“Down the Rabbit Hole” by Holly Madison
“I Take You” by Eliza Kennedy
“My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry” by Frederik Backman
“Crazy Rich Asians” by Kevin Kwan
“Circling the Sun” by Paula McLain

INTERVIEW
Mandy Smith, Author

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A light, lively and easy to pack selection of titles perfect for your summer reading repertoire. Elaine speaks with Mandy Smith about “Cabin Fever,” her memoir chronicling her years as a Virgin Atlantic flight attendant.

Family At The Heart Of The Story ~ Show July 25 and 26

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“Reconstructing Amelia” by Kimberly McCreight
“Accidents of Marriage” by Randy Susan Meyers
“The Theft of Memory: Losing My Father One Day at a Time” by Jonathan Kozol
“Our Souls at Night” by Kent Haruf
“Eight Hundred Grapes” by Laura Dave
“All the Single Ladies” by Dorothea Benton Frank
“Modern Romance” by Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg

INTERVIEW
Randy Susan Meyers, Author

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A look of new titles – thrillers, comedies and nonfiction – with family at the heart of the story. Elaine speaks with Randy Susan Meyers about her thought-provoking book, “Accidents of Marriage.”

Nonfiction Titles That Prove “Truth is stranger than fiction.” Show Aug 1 and 2

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“The Billion Dollar Spy” by David E. Hoffman
“Once Upon A Time in Russia” by Ben Mezrich
“The Spy’s Son” by Bryan Denson
“Arms and the Dudes” by Guy Lawson
“God’s Bankers” by Gerald Posner
“Two Hours” by Ed Caesar
“The Coloring Book” by Colin Quinn

INTERVIEW
Ben Mezrich, Author

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A preview of new nonfiction titles that prove “Truth is stranger than fiction.” Ben Mezrich returns to the program to introduce Elaine to his latest book about Vladimir Putin and the Russian oligarchs, “Once Upon a Time in Russia.”

Of Mice And Men To Be Banned In Idaho?

Hailed by the Nobel prize judges in 1962 for his realism and sympathetic humour, John Steinbeck is under attack. Parents in Idaho have branded “Of Mice and Men” “neither a quality story nor a page-turner” and asked for it to be removed from classrooms. A curriculum review committee in the city of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho has recommended the 1937 novella should no longer be taught in classrooms, according to the Spokesman-Review, and that ninth-graders should study it “on a voluntary, small-group basis” only. For parent Mary Jo Finney, the use of words such as “bastard” and “God damn” makes it unsuitable for 14- or 15-year-old students. After counting more than 100 “profanities,” she expressed her shock to the Spokesman-Review that “teachers actually had the audacity to have students read these profanities out loud in class”.

Steinbeck’s story of the difficulties faced by migrant fieldworkers in the Great Depression is a fixture on high-school syllabuses in the US, the UK and beyond, but since 1953 has also become one of America’s most frequently-challenged books.

In the same week, one of the novels on the American Library Association’s most recent list of banned books, “The Kite Runner” by Afghan-born Khaled Hosseini, has come under attack in North Carolina. According to the Citizen-Times, a parent in Asheville complained about the global bestseller’s language and “adult themes”. “The description of the book the teacher included mentioned that there was a rape,” said Lisa Baldwin, “but not that it was the rape of a child and it was the homosexual rape of a child, which I felt was something parents needed to know.” Baldwin also objected that Erich Maria Remarque’s 1929 novel, “All Quiet on the Western Front” had been “removed from the curriculum without parents knowing about it”.

Hosseini’s 2003 book has been removed from classrooms until a committee at Ashville’s Reynolds High School has considered Baldwin’s complaint. It’s not yet clear if parents concerned by Hosseini’s depiction of war and chaos in Afghanistan will be reassured by Remarque’s evocation of the shock and horror of mechanised warfare in France.