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All About Books

NET Nebraska

A weekly book review and discussion program hosted by Pat Leach. Updated on Thursdays.

A weekly book review and discussion program hosted by Pat Leach. Updated on Thursdays.


Lincoln, NE


NET Nebraska


A weekly book review and discussion program hosted by Pat Leach. Updated on Thursdays.




“The Only Wonderful Things" by Melissa Homestead

Most Nebraskans are familiar with Willa Cather’s novels, but a new book by UNL Professor of English Melissa Homestead reveals new information on how Cather wrote her stories. Her book is, “The Only Wonderful Things: The Creative Partnership of Willa Cather & Edith Lewis”


The “Friend Zone” series by Abby Jimenez.

With Labor Day past, there’s little time left for summer reading. This week’s program features guest reviewer Kiersten Hill who looks at 3 modern Romance novels which are both funny and innovative. The “Friend Zone” series by Abby Jimenez.


“Carville's Cure: by Pam Fessler”

In rural Louisiana was a place locals called simply, Carville. It was the only Leprosy colony in the United States. There, for generations, afflicted people were isolated, often against their will. A review of, “Carville's Cure: Leprosy, Stigma, and the Fight for Justice” by Pam Fessler”


“Tomatoes for Neela” by Padma Lakshmi

Preparing food is the time-honored way to help young people learn about their family and culture. Guest reviewer Dylan Teut Executive Director of the Plum Creek Literacy Festival, shares a children’s title, “Tomatoes for Neela” by Padma Lakshmi from TV's “Top Chef”


“Temporary” by Hillary Leichter

A playful satire on life and work in the gig economy. The novel, “Temporary” by Hillary Leichter is a surreal trip through the anxieties of late-stage capitalism.


"The Seed Keeper” by Diane Wilson

Guest reviewer Shirley Sneve introduces "The Seed Keeper” by Diane Wilson, a novel told through the voices of 4 generations of native women of the Northern Great Plains. It tells of the preservation of family and culture through hardships, aided by the safekeeping of traditional seeds.


"A Knock at Midnight” by Brittany Barnett

In her day job she moved billion-dollar deals. At night, she worked pro bono in near hopeless legal battles. As a successful young black-professional, Brittany Barnett used her talents and time to help those caught in the racial injustice of the courts. Her life story is told in "A Knock at Midnight: A Story of Hope, Justice, and Freedom.”


Introduction to Nebraska author, Mari Sandoz

Students growing up in Nebraska, may have read Mari Sandoz, but not everyone knows her books. This week on All About Books, special guest Lynn Roper from the Mari Sandoz Historical Society will introduce the life and works of the Nebraska author.


"Oak Flat" by Lauren Redniss.

A high elevation mesa in Arizona is a battleground between Apache people, the United States government and 2 of the world’s largest mining firms.The story is told in “Oak Flat: A Fight for Sacred Land in the American West” by Lauren Redniss.


"Hamnet: the Story of a Plague" by Maggie O'Farrell

On this week's program part 2 of UNL English Professor Stephen Buhler's summer reading list which features, "Hamnet: the Story of a Plague" by Maggie O'Farrell. A novel imagining William Shakespeare’s marriage, family and the death of one of his sons.


UNL English Professor Stephen Buhler's summer reading list.

What does an English professor read during summer vacation? As you’d expect, a variety of very good books. UNL’s Stephen Buhler is the guest on this week’s program sharing his summer reading list which includes travel, poetry, song, and of course something on Shakespeare.


“Leave the World Behind” by Rumaan Alam

A family renting a home in remote Long Island are startled by the return of the owners fleeing a black out in New York City. The novel “Leave the World Behind” by Rumaan Alam keeps readers off balance while dealing with family, race and home.


“Code Girls” by Liza Mundy.

They were recruited, trained and they worked completely in secret. More than 10 thousand young women worked for the US Army and Navy breaking enemy codes during World War 2. On this week’s “All About Books’ guest reviewer Lynn Roper shares a book that reveals the untold history of young women who quietly helped win the war, “Code Girls” by Liza Mundy.


"Wilmington's Lie" by David Zucchino

By the 1890s, Wilmington North Carolina was that states largest city and a shining example of a mixed-race community. But white supremacist Democrats plotted to take back the state legislature “by the ballot or bullet or both.” This week on Nebraska Public Media’s “All About Books” a review of the Pulizer Prize winning book "Wilmington's Lie: The Murderous Coup of 1898 and the Rise of White Supremacy” by David Zucchino


“Deacon King Kong” by James McBride.

An irritable, old church deacon shoots a drug dealer in broad daylight. This begins the action of the novel, “Deacon King Kong” by James McBride. The story reveals the reasons behind the shooting and the consequences to the 1960's New York neighborhood.


"Breasts and Eggs" by Mieko Kawakami.

Three Japanese women living in a tiny Tokyo apartments struggle to find peace in their lives as they deal with issues of partners, children and appearance. Hear a review of the novel “Breasts and Eggs” by best-selling Japanese author Mieko Kawakami.


"Transcendent Kingdom" by Yaa Gyasi.

The city-wide reading project, "One Book- One Lincoln" has announced the 3 finalists. On this week's "All About Books" David Smith from the selection committee will introduce one of the 3, "Transcendent Kingdom" by Yaa Gyasi.


“Children of the Land”, Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

He and his family lived by hiding in plain sight, hoping never to be truly seen. In his memoir, “Children of the Land”, Marcelo Hernandez Castillo tells of their survival in a system that treated them like criminals for seeking safe, normal lives.


“Rural Rebellion" by Ross Benes

Brainard, Nebraska native Ross Benes found himself trying to explain to his New York City friends what the people of rural American were really like. His thoughts and experiences bridging rural and urban America led to his new book, “Rural Rebellion: How Nebraska Became a Republican Stronghold.” On this week’s “All About Books” he talks about growing up in Nebraska as it politically moved to the right and why that happened.


All About Books: “Interior Chinatown” by Charles Yu

An Asian actor stuck generic roles longs to move his career forward. With this character, novelist Charles Yu skewers cultural stereotypes with humor and insight in his novel, “Interior Chinatown”