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Fiction

The Leonard Lopate Show

The Struggle: Covert War, Minimum Wage, Isolation and Exile

Monday, May 05, 2014

On today’s show: We’ll look into the history of covert operations, stretching all the way back to the Truman Administration. George Prochnik traces the life of Stefan Zweig, and tells us why this major literary star of the 1930s killed himself in 1942. Our series Strapped: A Look at Poverty in America series continues with former Labor Secretary Robert Reich on the economics of being poor and whether raising the minimum wage can actually help workers get out of poverty. And Mona Simpson talks about her latest novel, Casebook.

Soundcheck

Pick Three: Author Francine Prose

Friday, May 02, 2014

The acclaimed author shares a playlist of songs that helped her get into her characters' heads while writing her latest novel. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Every Day Is for the Thief, a Novel by Teju Cole

Friday, May 02, 2014

Teju Cole talks about his new novel, Every Day Is for the Thief, about a young Nigerian living in New York City who goes home to Lagos for a visit, finding a city both familiar and strange. He taps into the energies of Lagos life—creative, malevolent, ambiguous—and slowly begins to make sense of the profound changes that have taken place in his country and in himself in the 15 years since he moved away.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

In the Light of What We Know, a Novel by Zia Haider Rahman

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Zia Haider Rahman discusses her debut novel, In the Light of What We Know, set during the war and financial crisis that defined the beginning of this century. One September morning in 2008, an investment banker whose career and marriage are collapsing receives a surprise visitor at his West London townhouse. In the disheveled figure of a South Asian male carrying a backpack, the banker recognizes a long-lost friend, a mathematics prodigy who disappeared years earlier under mysterious circumstances.

 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

All The Birds, Singing, a Novel by Evie Wyld

Monday, April 28, 2014

Evie Wyld, one of Granta magazine's Best Young British Novelists, discusses her new book, All The Birds, Singing, about a young woman living in an old farmhouse on a British island where her disobedient collie and a flock of sheep are her sole companions. But every few nights something—or someone—picks off one of the sheep. Is it foxes in the woods, a strange boy and a strange man, or an obscure, formidable beast?

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Tributes: Alistair MacLeod

Friday, April 25, 2014

The Herald of Glasgow called Alistair MacLeod was “one of the greatest living writers in English.”  That’s despite the fact that the Canadian’s output was relatively small.  He only published one novel, No Great Mischief, (which he wrote over the course of 13 years), and fewer than two dozen short stories (which were all collected in the volume, Island). Rugged Cape Breton was his emotional heartland, and where he set most of his fiction.  A perfectionist, he explained, “I take a lot of time thinking about what I’m writing.”  He died recently at the age of 77.  And you can hear Leonard’s interview with him from January, 2001.

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NYPR Archives & Preservation

Eileen Simpson Introduction

Monday, April 21, 2014

In October, 1982 fiction and non-fiction writer Eileen Simpson joined Reader’s Almanac host Walter James Miller to discuss her third book, Poets in Their Youth: A Memoir . The work is based on her years of intimacy with some of the major writers of our time. John Berryman, Delmore Schwartz, Robert Lowell, and Edmund Wilson to name a few. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena, a Novel by Anthony Marra

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Anthony Marra discusses his debut novel, A Constellation of Vital Phenomena. It’s set in Chechnya and explores the transcendent power of love in wartime.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Above, a Novel by Isla Morley

Friday, April 11, 2014

Isla Morley discusses her novel Above. It’s about a teenager who’s abducted by a survivalist and locked away in an aban­doned missile silo in Eudora, Kansas. At first, she focuses frantically on finding a way out, until the harrowing truth of her new existence settles in—the crushing loneliness, the terrifying madness of a captor who believes he is saving her from the end of the world, and the persistent temptation to give up.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Kinder than Solitude, a Novel by Yiyun Li

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Yiyun Li discusses her new novel, Kinder than Solitude, which moves back and forth in time, between America today and China in the 1990s, and follows the story of three people whose lives are changed by a murder one of them may have committed.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Frog Music, a Novel by Emma Donoghue

Monday, April 07, 2014

Emma Donoghue talks about her novel Frog Music, which tells the story of Blanche Beunon, a French burlesque dancer in mid-19th century San Francisco who risks everything to bring to justice the murderer of her friend Jenny.

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On The Media

News and the Novel

Friday, March 21, 2014

For the past four years novelist David Bezmozgis has been writing a book set in Crimea. His forthcoming novel, The Betrayers, was intended to be set in August 2014, but that isn't possible now. Brooke speaks with Bezmozgis, as he sits between manuscript lock and book release, about trying to adjust his fictional story set in a fraught, factual place. 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Guest Picks: Susan Minot

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Susan Minot was on the Leonard Lopate Show recently to talk about her latest novel, Thirty Girls. She also told us that she's a fan of popcorn. Find out what else she's a fan of! 

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Thirty Girls, a New Novel by Susan Minot

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Susan Minot talks about her new novel, Thirty Girls, about two extraordinary young women confronting displacement, heartbreak, and the struggle to find meaning from events that test them. Esther is a Ugandan teenager abducted by the Lord's Resistance Army who struggling to survive, to escape, and to find a way to live with what she has seen and done. Jane is an American journalist who has traveled to Africa, hoping to give a voice to children like Esther and to find her center after a series of failed relationships.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

All Our Names, a Novel by Dinaw Mengestu

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Dinaw Mengestu talks about his latest novel, All Our Names. It’s the story of two young men who come of age during an African revolution, drawn from the safe confines of the university into the clamor of the streets. But as the line between idealism and violence becomes increasingly blurred, the friends are driven apart—one into danger, the other into the safety of exile in America, where he is haunted by the friend he left behind.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia

Monday, March 17, 2014

Mohsin Hamid talks about his new novel, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia. It’s a tale of a man’s journey from impoverished rural boy to corporate tycoon, and it steals its shape from the business self-help books devoured by ambitious youths all over “rising Asia.” It follows its nameless hero to the sprawling metropolis where he begins to amass an empire built on that most fluid, and increasingly scarce, of goods: water.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Bark, Short Stories by Lorrie Moore

Friday, March 14, 2014

Lorrie Moore talks about her new book of short stories,Bark, her first in 15 years. The collection includes eight stories that show people who are coping with large dislocation in their lives.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Guest Picks: Lorrie Moore

Friday, March 14, 2014

Lorrie Moore talks to Leonard Lopate about her new book of short stories, Bark, her first in 15 years.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

The Future of Big Coal; "Dinner with Friends"; Helen Oyeymi's Boy, Snow, Bird; Please Explain

Friday, March 07, 2014

Fortune magazine’s Richard Martin explains why the American coal industry isn’t going down without a fight. Then, Donald Margulies talks about the Roundabout’s revival of his play, “Dinner with Friends,” with Darren Pettie and Jeremy Shamos who star in the production. Helen Oyeyemi discusses her latest novel, Boy, Snow, Bird. Set in 1953, it tells the story of a woman named Boy who moves to a small town in Massachusetts in search of beauty—and finds something much more complicated. Plus, our latest Please Explain is all about why sitting—on our couches, on the subway, at our desks, in our cars—can be so bad for us over the long term.

The Leonard Lopate Show

Helen Oyeyemi's Novel Boy, Snow, Bird

Friday, March 07, 2014

Helen Oyeyemi talks about her novel Boy, Snow, Bird. In the winter of 1953, Boy Novak arrives by chance in a small town in Massachusetts, looking for a new life. She marries a local widower and becomes stepmother to his winsome daughter, Snow Whitman. When Bird has a baby who is dark-skinned, exposes the Whitmans as light-skinned African Americans passing for white.

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