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

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.”

Classic Titles Narrated By Top Actors ~ Show July 18 and 19

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“Go Set A Watchman” by Harper Lee: performed by Reese Witherspoon
“To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee: performed by Sissy Spacek
“The Member of the Wedding” by Carson McCullers: performed by Susan Sarandon
“Being There” by Jerzy Kosinski: performed by Dustin Hoffman
“The Heart of Darkness” by Joseph Conrad: performed by Kenneth Branagh
“The Sheltering Sky” by Paul Bowles: performed by Jennifer Connelly
“The End of the Affair” by Graham Greene: performed by Colin Firth

INTERVIEW
Marja Mills, Author

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Elaine spotlights new performances of classic titles narrated by Hollywood’s top actors. Marja Mills shares her experiences as Harper Lee’s neighbor – timed to coincide with the Lee’s release of “Go Set a Watchman.”

People Who Changed Our World ~ Show July 11 and 12

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“Elon Musk” by Ashlee Vance
“The Virgin Way” by Richard Branson
“Becoming Steve Jobs” by Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli
“Madison’s Gift” by David Stewart
“Strategy: A History” by Lawrence Freedman
“Napoleon: A Life” by Andrew Roberts
“Alibaba’s World” by Porter Erisman

INTERVIEW
Senator Gary Hart

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A spotlight on entrepreneurs, politicians and statesmen who changed our world. Elaine speaks with Senator Gary Hart about his new title, “The Republic of Conscience.”

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

James Patterson Donates $100,000 To Bookstores In Australia And New Zealand

JAMES PATTERSON DONATES $100,000 TO BOOKSTORES IN AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

In his first visit to Australia in 11 years, Patterson announced a $100,000 donation from which Australian and New Zealand book sellers with dedicated children’s sections could apply for cash grants of up to $5000. The donation was timed for Patterson’s arrival in Sydney for a series of Writers’ Festival events and promotion of Rafe’s Aussie Adventure, his Middle School pre-teens collaboration with writer-illustrator Martin Chatterton.

The greatest challenge facing society, warned Patterson, was getting bright children to read more broadly and at-risk kids reading competently. One in three Australian high school students could be considered functionally illiterate. Patterson’s hope was that Australia might follow Germany’s lead and set up a ministerial foundation to support and acknowledge the importance of independent booksellers as missionaries of children’s literacy. Were Amazon to locate its operations in Australia, Patterson predicts half the local bookstores would close.

Patterson has been one of the loudest voices in the book world warning about the pressure of online discounting and e-book retailing on the local bookstore. Retailers, who applauded Patterson’s assistance, have been lobbying for the imposition of GST for all online purchases and a review of international parcel delivery agreements.

Patterson holds the Guinness Book of Record for Number One New York Times bestsellers. Total worldwide sales exceed 300 million, of which he has sold 4.5 million copies in Australia.

A former copywriter, Patterson’s prodigious output includes one or two standalone thrillers each year in his name and seven or eight books which he commissions by way of detailed 50 to 80 page synopsis, edits and, if necessary, rewrites. To criticism of his methods, “my answer is Simon and Garfunkel, Lennon and McCartney, Stephen King and Peter Straub and the Coen brothers”.

As a commissioning editor and co-author, Patterson has branched into the genre of young-adult and children’s fiction, collaborating in six children’s book series. Chatterton describes his partnership as a “pain-free” experience, and Patterson as a precise and conscientious editor. “I strive for the highest common denominator,” Patterson says.

Patterson’s passion for child literacy began with his son’s reluctance to read. One summer he cancelled Jack’s chores and told him his only obligation was to read for one hour a day. “Give them stories that they’ll gobble up like chocolate pudding and ask for more,” says Patterson of the secret to enthusing reluctant readers. The only bad book was one that put a child off reading for life.

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

Stephen King Wins The Edgar Award

Master of horror Stephen King has won America’s top crime-writing award for his serial killer thriller “Mr Mercedes.” The novel sees King steer clear of paranormal elements to focus on a very human evil. The book beat titles by more traditional practitioners of crime writing including Ian Rankin, Stuart Neville and Karin Slaughter was named best novel at the Edgar Awards in New York at the end of April.

“He represents a plausible evil; it’s impossible not to hear echoes in his story of other troubled young American men who have opened fire in crowded schools or cinemas, as King peels back the layers to understand how a killer like Brady is formed,” said the Observer review of the novel.

Run by the Mystery Writers of America, the Edgars, named for Edgar Allan Poe, have been running for over 60 years, with the best novel prize won in the past by Patricia Highsmith, John le Carré and Raymond Chandler.

“Well, on the minus side I didn’t win the Edgar award – some young ruffian called Stephen King did. On the plus side … I got to meet Mr King,” tweeted Rankin after King’s win. The Scottish writer had been shortlisted for “Saints of the Shadow Bible,” part of his series of crime novels about the detective John Rebus. Neville, shortlisted for “The Final Silence,” in which a woman discovers a catalogue of victims in her late uncle’s house, wrote on Twitter: “I didn’t win the Edgar, but I got to meet @StephenKing, who was very gracious in tolerating my fawning.”

The best first novel by an American author award went to “Dry Bones in the Valley” by Tom Bouman. Gillian Flynn, author of “Gone Girl,” took the best short story prize for “What Do You Do,” from the Rogues anthology. The ceremony also saw James Ellroy and Lois Duncan named grand masters, an honor the Mystery Writers of America says represents “the pinnacle of achievement in mystery writing”.

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

Celebrity Bios ~ show May 30 and 31

FEATURED BOOKS PREVIEWED

“A Fine Romance” by Candice Bergen
“Part Swan, Part Goose” by Swoosie Kurtz
“Watch Me” by Anjelica Huston
“There Was A Little Girl” by Brooke Shields
“When the Balls Drop” by Brad Garrett
“So That Happened” by Jon Cryer
“Uganda Be Kidding Me” by Chelsea Handler

INTERVIEW
Swoosie Kurtz, Author

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A look at the new crop of celebrity bios, written by the men and women frequently in the Hollywood headlines. To add to your enjoyment, each of these titles is performed by the author. Elaine speaks with Swoosie Kurtz about her memoir, “Part Swan, Part Goose.”

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