the book show

Author, historian and Pulitzer Prize-winner Doris Kearns Goodwin’s latest work is “Leadership: In Turbulent Times.” Goodwin explores questions of natural leadership ability versus developed ability; the relationship between ambition and adversity on leadership growth; and how leaders both perceive themselves and are perceived by others.

Guided by the 3,000 letters between the prominent journalist, Lorena Hickok, and one of the world’s most admired women, Eleanor Roosevelt, Amy Bloom’s novel “White Houses” explores Eleanor’s real-life romantic relationship with Lorena.

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Miriam Pawel’s new book: “The Browns of California: The Family Dynasty that Transformed a State and Shaped a Nation,” is a panoramic history of California and its impact on the nation told through the lens of the family dynasty that led the state for nearly a quarter century.

In “The Sky Is Falling: How Vampires, Zombies, Androids, and Superheroes Made America Great for Extremism,” cultural journalist Peter Biskind dives headlong into two decades of popular culture, from superhero franchises and series like “The Walking Dead” and “Game of Thrones” to thrillers like “Homeland” and “24,” and emerges to argue that these shows are saturated with the values that are currently animating our extreme politics.

In her admired works of fiction, including the recent "The Book That Matters Most," best-selling author Ann Hood explores the transformative power of literature.

In her new book, "Morningstar," she reveals the personal story behind beloved novels in her life.

Nancy Pearl has worked as a librarian and a bookseller for more than three decades, she is regularly featured on NPR’s Morning Edition talking about her favorite books.

The author of several works on non-fiction, she has now written her first novel, George & Lizzie, an emotional novel about an unlikely marriage as a crossroads.

Jennifer Zeynab Joukhadar and book cover "The Map of Salt and Stars"
Neha Gautam

“The Map of Salt and Stars” is the debut novel by Syrian American writer Jennifer Zeynab Joukhadar. It is the story of two girls living eight hundred years apart: a modern-day Syrian refugee seeking safety and a medieval adventurer apprenticed to a legendary mapmaker, showing the pain of exile and the triumph of courage. 

Stephen Greenblatt, the award-winning Shakespeare scholar, has looked once more at the Bard’s works that have inspired him during a time that concerns him.

His new book is “Tyrant.” In it he illuminates the ways in which Shakespeare delves into the lust for absolute power and the catastrophic consequences of its execution.

Joselin Linder has been on a quest to uncover the truth about her likely fatal genetic disorder that opens a window onto the explosive field of genomic medicine. Linder’s new book is “The Family Gene: A Mission to Turn My Deadly Inheritance into a Hopeful Future.”

Author Photo - Michael Lionstar

Amitava Kumar’s second novel, “Immigrant, Montana,” is a literary immigrant tale with a provocative modern edge, one that fuses story and reportage, anecdote and annotation, and picture and text.

World-renowned writing teacher Natalie Goldberg’s new memoir, “Let the Whole Thundering World Come Home” shares her experience with cancer grounded in her practice of writing and Zen. It is a reflection on being in love with your life even when life brings illness.

Simon Winchester has taken on subjects as diverse as the volcanic explosion of Krakatoa to the creation of the Oxford English Dictionary. His latest, “The Perfectionists,” traces the development of technology from the Industrial Age to the Digital Age to explore the single component crucial to advancement: precision.

Author of "Object of My Affection," Stephen McCauley‘s new novel, "My Ex-Life," is about a formerly married couple who haven’t seen each other in decades.

Over the course of the story, we find out what happens when they find themselves living together again.

Set over the course of one week in June of 1939, the new novel The World of Tomorrow by Brendan Mathews is a story about siblings, the joys of music, love (mutual and unrequited), and the meaning of home.

It is a New York novel, but also one of the world, of big dreams and big love and what it means to be willing to pay any price for your family. 

This episode was recorded at The Mount in Lenox, Massachusettes. 

From his rapid-fire stand-up comedy riffs to his starring roles in "Mork and Mindy" and "Good Will Hunting," Robin Williams was an innovative and beloved entertainer -- but as New York Times culture reporter Dave Itzkoff shows in his new biography, "Robin," Williams' comic brilliance masked a deep well of conflicting emotions and self-doubt.

Tommy Orange and book cover for "There There"
Author Photo - Elena Seibert

Tommy Orange’s powerful and urgent Native American voice has exploded onto the landscape of contemporary fiction. His debut novel, “There There,” interweaves the experiences of twelve people who gather in Oakland for a pow wow. It is a multigenerational story about violence, recovery, hope, and loss.

Rachel Kadish’s new novel The Weight of Ink is set in London. It is the interwoven tale of two women of remarkable intellect – one an emigrant from Amsterdam who is permitted to scribe for a blind rabbi, just before the plague hits the city; the other an ailing historian with a love of Jewish history.

As host of “The Lead” and “State of the Union” on CNN, Jake Tapper spends his days bringing attention to some of the biggest political headlines.

Tapper has now brought Washington intrigue and the “swampiness” on this city to his first novel. “The Hellfire Club,” is a political thriller that takes place during the days when Senator Joe McCarthy was carrying out his Communist “witch hunt.”

Kirk Walla Johnson and Book cover "The Feather Thief
Marie-Josee Cantin Johnson

Kirk Wallace Johnson’s new book, “The Feather Thief: Beauty, Obsession and the Natural History Heist of the Century,” is a true story which explores the 2009 theft of rare Victorian-era bird feathers from a British museum by American music student Edwin Rist who was obsessed with using the feathers for exotic fishing lures.

Sue Halpern is the author of seven books of fiction and nonfiction. Her new novel, “Summer Hours at the Robbers Library,” tells us about a little New England library that has become the heart of a small town. In the book, we meet an unlikely trio who are drawn to each other and who come to terms with how their lives have unraveled and how they finally can reclaim their stories.

National Book Award winning author Richard Powers spent a year under the redwoods of California.

That reflection led to his new novel, “The Overstory,” about the world of trees and a band of people determined to change the way it’s perceived.

Bestselling YA author Andrea Buchanan lost her mind while crossing the street one blustery March morning. The cold winter air triggered a coughing fit, and she began to choke.

She was choking on a lot that day. A sick son. A pending divorce. The guilt of failing as a partner and as a mother. When the coughing finally stopped, she thought it was over. She could not have been more wrong. Her new memoir is "The Beginning of Everything: The Year I Lost My Mind and Found Myself."

Larry Ruhl’s new book, “Breaking the Ruhls,” is a profoundly personal account of the impact of complex trauma on a man’s life. Larry’s father sought comfort from his only son, blurring critical boundaries that would prove deeply debilitating. Larry’s mother, with her spiraling, ever-changing mental illness kept the family in a constant state of anxiety.

Tara Westover’s memoir, “Educated,” has made its way to the number one spot on the New York Times bestsellers list.

She tells her story of being a young girl who, kept out of school, leaves her survivalist family and goes on to earn a PhD from Cambridge University.

It's been more than two decades since award-winning author Charles Frazier had wild success with his debut novel, "Cold Mountain."

Frazier’s 4th novel, "Varina," returns to that era with the story of Varina Howell - the second wife of Jefferson Davis.

This is an Off The Shelf edition of The Book Show, presented by Northshire Bookstore and taped live in front of an audience.

Stefan Merrill Block and book cover for "Oliver Loving"
Author Photo: Beowulf Sheehan

Stefan Merrill Block frequently covers bleak territory in his novels, and his latest, “Oliver Loving,” is no exception.

Block takes us inside the mind of a comatose West Texas teen who has been hit in the head during a mass shooting on the night of his high school prom.

Sigrid Nunez’s new novel, “The Friend,” is a moving story of love, friendship, grief, healing, and the magical bond between a woman and her dog.

Nunez’s previous novels include “Salvation City,” “The Last of Her Kind” and “A Feather on the Breath of God.”

Kristin Hannah’s best-selling novel “The Nightingale” illuminated the women of the French resistance in World War II. Her new novel “The Great Alone” focuses on fiercely independent women in extraordinarily difficult circumstances in Alaska who must fight each day to survive.

Gish Jen has spent much of her literary career writing about the experiences of Chinese-Americans. Her latest book, “The Girl at the Baggage Claim: Explaining the East-West Culture Gap,” makes the case for the sociological and cultural patterns that influence many aspects of identity.

If you knew the date of your death, how would you live your life? It is the question at the center of Chloe Benjamin’s new novel, “The Immortalists.”

Four siblings find out and keep the dates secret from one another, but their prophecies inform their next five decades.

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