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Leonard Lopate Show Book Club


Host Leonard Lopate lets you in on the best conversations with writers, actors, ex-presidents, dancers, scientists, comedians, historians, grammarians, curators, filmmakers, and do-it-yourself experts.

Host Leonard Lopate lets you in on the best conversations with writers, actors, ex-presidents, dancers, scientists, comedians, historians, grammarians, curators, filmmakers, and do-it-yourself experts.
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New York, NY




Host Leonard Lopate lets you in on the best conversations with writers, actors, ex-presidents, dancers, scientists, comedians, historians, grammarians, curators, filmmakers, and do-it-yourself experts.




WNYC Radio PO Box 1550 New York, NY 10116-1550 646-829-3985


Tribute: Tom Wolfe

Tom Wolfe, the iconic bestselling writer – and one of the best-dressed! – just died at the age of 87 from pneumonia. He was known for his satirical light touch over the course of many novels, ranging from The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby, to The Right Stuff and The Bonfire of the Vanities. He was a guest on this show back in 2012 for The Bonfire of the Vanities. Listen to the interview here.


Book Club: The Scary Story Edition

Edgar Award-winning crime/thriller novelist and television writer Megan Abbott joins us to talk about our scary story contest, and we will speak to the runner ups and the winner! Read the winning story and the runner ups below! This segment is guest hosted by Jonathan Capehart. Winner Beauty Is In the Eye By Tammy Green Something struck my eye as I gazed up at the church steeple in St. Stephen’s Square in Vienna. The force of it made me wince. “What is it, Anne,” my boyfriend asked. It...


We Celebrate Halloween With Spooky Stories

It's Halloween, and here at the Leonard Lopate Show Book Club, we're celebrating this spooky time of year with Edgar Award-winning crime/thriller novelist and television writer Megan Abbott. We're also joined by Paul Collins, author of the biography Edgar Allan Poe: The Fever Called Living. They discuss writing for the mystery, crime and noir genres, and share some of their favorite stories. We also want to hear from you! Do you enjoy writing stories about things that go bump in the night?...


Send Us Your Scary Stories!

That's right, we want your best original scary story. Anything in the vein of mystery, crime, noir, and horror, is fair game. Megan Abbott is the Edgar-award winning author of seven novels, including Dare Me, The End of Everything, and The Fever, and she is also a writer on the new HBO show "The Deuce." And she will be reading and judging your submissions! The deadline is Monday, November 13. This can be a self contained short story or the beginning of a longer tale, but it must contain...


The ABCs of Starting, and Maintaining, a Book Club

For this month's Leonard Lopate Show Book Club segment, we will be addressing how to start your own book club, keep your book picks from getting stale, and how to keep it going for years. Lynn Lobash, who oversees reader services at the NYPL, and Glory Edim, the creator of the Brooklyn based book club and online community “Well Read Black Girl,” join us to discuss tips and tricks for starting a book club and keeping it going. We will also hear from a few subscribers to our Book Club...


Colum McCann, Michael Groden Talk 'Ulysses'

National Book Award-winning novelist Colum McCann joins us for the final installment in our Leonard Lopate Book Club series dedicated to reading James Joyce’s epic Ulysses. He’ll be joined by returning Ulysses expert Michael Groden, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus in the Department of English and Writing Studies at Western University.


Why Edna O'Brien Returns to Ulysses, Again and Again

As we continue to read Ulysses for The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club, we will be joined by Edna O'Brien. She will share why this novel has influenced her life and writing. Edna O'Brien is the author of The Country Girls trilogy, The Light of Evening, The Love Object, The Little Red Chairs, and many other acclaimed books. Born and raised in the west of Ireland, O'Brien has lived in London for many years. Click here to subscribe to The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club newsletter!


The Leonard Lopate Book Club Presents: Ulysses “The Greatest Novel Never Read”

Michael Groden, distinguished university professor emeritus in the Department of English and Writing Studies at Western University, kicks off our new Leonard Lopate Book Club series dedicated to reading James Joyce’s epic Ulysses, often described as “the greatest novel never read.” Groden is the author of several books including Ulysses in Progress and Ulysses in Focus. Groden will be preparing the book club to read Ulysses, and will talk about the qualities that make the book both important...


Children's Book Authors on Giving the Gift of Reading

What books do you love and want to pass on to your children? The Leonard Lopate Book Club wants to hear from you about the books you're giving to young readers over the holidays... and all year round... in the hopes that they'll love them as much as you do! To guide the conversation, we'll be joined by two very accomplished children's book authors: Jon Scieszka, author of books like The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales and Math Curse, founder of Guys Read, and a former...


The Deathbed Confession That Inspired Michael Chabon's 'Moonglow'

Michael Chabon is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Wonder Boys, and The Yiddish Policeman's Union. But back in 1989, when Mr. Chabon was merely a debut novelist, he had a shocking experience. He paid a visit to his dying grandfather, who was staying with Chabon's mother in Oakland, California, and who, in a drug and illness-addled haze, began telling long-suppressed stories about his life as a young man. For a week, Chabon listened to these...


Tell Us About the Books that Changed Your Life

From novels and memoirs, to plays and poetry, it's no secret that books have the power to move us and remain with us long after we finish the final chapter. For this month's Leonard Lopate Show Book Club, we want to hear all about the books and authors that have changed your life! We'll hear from literary stars Susan Orlean and Emma Straub about their favorite books. Both writers are featured in The Books that Changed My Life, edited by Bethanne Patrick, who will also join the...


Paul Beatty's Satire, Complete with Drive-Thru Funerals and the Last Surviving Little Rascal

The Sellout follows the story of one man's quest to get his hometown, the "agrarian ghetto" of Dickens, California, put back on the map after its unceremonious removal. He enlists the help of Dickens' only celebrity resident, Hominy Jenkins, the last surviving original cast member of "The Little Rascals." As Paul Beatty's plot unfolds, so does his particular sense of satirical humor... with the protagonist becoming a slave owner, seeking to reestablish racial segregation, and taking his...


Mary Higgins Clark Has Us on the Edge of Our Seats

Novelist Mary Higgins Clark and her signature brand of unputdownable suspense have been keeping readers up at night for decades. She joins The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club to discuss the book where it all began, her first mystery bestseller, Where Are the Children?. She also talks about her life, which in many ways has been as dramatic and interesting as the stories she writes. The so-called "Queen of Suspense" just released her 52nd book, As Time Goes By. Audio Bonus: Listen to an...


Video: Ann Goldstein on Elena Ferrante's "Dialect"

The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club got a lot of listener questions for Ann Goldstein, the literary translator responsible for bringing Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan novels to English readers. The most popular question? How does Elena Ferrante use "dialect," and how does Ms. Goldstein interpret it? According to Goldstein, Ferrante's dialect is the language of children, anger, and home, while Italian is reserved for formal education, and for "getting out of where you are." Find out more in the...


Video: Want to Be a Writer? Don't Compromise, Says Angela Flournoy

Publishing a first novel is a big deal, but not many authors release their debut to much acclaim. Angela Flournoy, though, is exceptional. Her first novel, The Turner House, was a National Book Award finalist, and named one of the National Book Foundation's "5 Under 35." Naturally, we wanted to get some advice from her about writing a first book. “If you think you have a subject matter that’s worthy," she told us, "Even if it’s not what you see on bestseller lists, just pursue it.” Watch the...


Video: If the GOP Were a Shakespearean Drama, According to Marlon James

When one of his students comes to him and says, "I want to be a writer," Marlon James has one piece of advice: quit. To James, writing is not about talent, it's about discipline and hunger. When he stopped by The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club to discuss his Man Booker Prize-winning novel, A Brief History of Seven Killings, he also told us about how he tunes out the world while he's writing, and how he thinks Shakespeare would have written the ongoing race to the GOP nomination. Find out how...


Your Favorite Re-Read Books!

We enjoy talking about new books here at The Leonard Lopate Show, but there's this other, undeniable part of us that prefers worn pages, creased spines, notes in the margins, and dog eared corners. Phillip Lopate and Jane Smiley talk about some of their favorites. We'll also hear from our listeners who wrote in to tell us all about their cherished re-reads! Don't forget to sign up for our Leonard Lopate Show Book Club newsletter! Lois Hansen, one of our listeners, sent us photos of her...


Video: Peer Inside Orhan Pamuk's Secret Notebook

Orhan Pamuk is a self-described graphomaniac. The Nobel Prize-winning author visited The Leonard Lopate Show Book Club to discuss his latest novel, A Strangeness in My Mind, and when he told us that he always keeps a notebook in his jacket pocket for writing, drawing, and diary keeping, we naturally asked if we could see it. You can too in the video below!


Video: Judy Blume Assures You That Everything Is Okay

When Judy Blume visited our offices to talk about her highly anticipated novel for adults, In the Unlikely Event, we couldn't resist asking her about some of the more awkward things that happen to us as we age. In this video, she reassures us that everything is fine, and that "you just gotta go with it!" Watch, we guarantee it will put you at ease.


Neil Gaiman's 'Neverwhere,' 20 Years in the Making

Neil Gaiman's work crosses genres and media, and reaches audiences of all ages. He is listed in the Dictionary of Literary Biography as one of the top ten living post-modern writers, is credited with being one of the creators of modern comics, and his novels have been adapted for screens both large (Coraline) and small (the recently announced American Gods series for Starz). This month, he'll release the author's preferred text edition of his acclaimed fantasy novel, Neverwhere... and it's...