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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 Bonfire of the Vanities. He was a guest on this show back in 2012 for 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....


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...


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 fare 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 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...


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 joinsThe Leonard Lopate Show Book Club to discuss the book where it all began, her firstmystery bestseller, Where Are the Children?. She also talks about her life, which in many ways has beenas dramatic and interesting as the stories she writes. The so-called "Queen of Suspense" just released her 52nd book, As Time Goes By. Leave your questions for Mary...


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

Publishing afirst 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 Clubto 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...


Sarah Montague on Coming of Age and A Legacy

When The Leonard Lopate Book Club announced itslatest pick, Sybille Bedford's1956 novel, A Legacy,we got an immediate response from WNYC cultural reporterSarah Montague, who first read the book when she was 18. She said the experience of reading this novel helpedher realize that she had crossed the threshold from childhood into adulthood. Listen to Sarah comment on the text and read some of her favorite passages. And if you've already readA Legacy, she also recommends checking out...


You Won't Get That Out of Franzen! A Web Extra Starring Daniel Handler

Daniel Handler on who he reads, how he writes, where he writes, and a few extra things too.


Read Alice McDermott's Charming Billy with the Book Club

Alice McDermott's 1998 novel Charming Billy won the National Book Award for fiction. It's about first love, buried secrets, and the life of an Irish American drinker in Queens. Family and friends gather to comfort Billy Lynch's widow and remember his life, trading tales and painting a portrait of Billy, who was a loyal friend, loving husband, enduring romantic, and an incurable alcoholic. Leave your questions and comments for her to join in the conversation! Charming Billy by Alice...


This Month We're Reading Mary Gordon's 'Pearl'

In his New York Times review of Pearl, John Leonard wrote: “Mary Gordon thinks out loud about mothers, daughters, atonement and forgiveness; about music, art, sainthood and terrorism; about martyrdom and Irish politics, genocide in Europe and Cambodia, suicide and human sacrifice; about scorn, butter, hunger, greed, cloisters and surveillance; Virgil and Aquinas, Eliot and Yeats, Hecuba and Isis, Anne Frank and Joan of Arc.” The story begins on Christmas night, when Maria Meyer finds out...


Seán Hemingway on The Sun Also Rises

Ernest Hemingway's first novel, The Sun Also Rises, is the quintessential story of the Lost Generation. The story follows Lady Brett Ashley and Jake Barnes and their carousing friends from the nightclubs of 1920s Paris to the bull fights in Spain. It looks at the disillusionment of the post-World War I generation, but, at its heart, the novel is about unrequited love. Ernest Hemingway’s grandson,Seán Hemingway, will be here to discuss a new edition of the novel—and the early drafts and...


Adelle Waldman's The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.

Adelle Waldman's debut novel made a big impression when it was published last year—it was named one of the best books of the year by The New Yorker, Slate, NPR, and The New York Times. The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. follows writer Nate Piven, a young rising star in New York's literary world who can’t quite figure out his romantic life. It’s a portrait of a flawed and sometimes infuriating modern man searching for happiness, and it’s an honest look at how Nate thinks about women, sex, and...


Mary Roach's Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal

Mary Roach’s latest book Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal investigates how digestion works, from start to finish. Roach writes about the scientists who tackle the complex bodily process that fuels us and keeps us alive. Gulp is the Leonard Lopate Show Book Club’s April selection, so pick up a copy and start reading today! Mary Roach will be here April 17 to talk about the amazing, sometimes stomach-turning facts she learned about our digestive tract. Leave your questions for the...


What We're Reading Now: Middlemarch and My Life in Middlemarch

Many of our book club authors have listed Middlemarch as among of their favorite and most influential novels, so for our March selection, the Lopate Show Book club is reading George Eliot’s masterpiece, which is often called the greatest English novel. It deals with the complexity of love, the meaning of marriage, morality, and human aspiration and failure. Rebecca Mead joins us to talk about what makes the classic novel so great, and to discuss her book, My Life in Middlemarch. Mixing...