Going beyond the book with a wide range of authors to discover the story behind the books we love.
This Is The Book: We Are Not Like Them
32:27We Are Not Like Them shows the impact of a police shooting of an unarmed black teenager from a different angle. Two close friends, Jen and Riley, one white, one black, one the wife of the police officer responsible, one the news anchor charged with covering the story. A premise made all the more intriguing as it was written by not one author but two, Jo Piazza and Christine Pride, one white, one black, both working together to create an unflinching novel that will start conversations. Featuring: Jo Piazza, Christine Pride, Manpreet Grewal, Stephanie Heathcote
This Is The Book: The Dust Never Settles
38:18Some debut novelists arrive fully formed and as we’ll discover in this episode, Karina Lickorish Quinn is one such novelist; an Anglo-Peruvian writer who has drawn on family memories and the wider history of Peru to create a novel about home, injustice and ghosts that recalls Faulkner’s famous line, ‘The past is never dead. It's not even past.’ Coming from a publisher that has already chalked up multiple Booker Prize wins in recent years you’ll want to know why this year, for them, This Is The Book. Featuring: Karina Lickorish Quinn, Juliet Mabey, Kate Bland, Ben Summers, Seren Adams.
This Is The Book: Empress & Aniya
25:00Sometimes all you need is a one sentence pitch to immediately get excited about a book. And when publisher Knights Of announced earlier this year that they would be publishing Empress & Aniya, a YA novella from Candice Carty-Williams which would be South London’s answer to Freaky Friday, you could almost hear the whoops and squeals across social media. In this episode we’ll hear from author, publisher and early readers about why, particularly if you’re a teenage girl, This Is The Book. Featuring: Candice Carty-Williams, Aimée Felone, Eishar Brar, Tanya Byrne.
How We Made: Signs Preceding The End Of The World with Yuri Herrera
33:16The rich mythology and linguistic skills on display in Yuri Herrera's Signs Preceding The End Of The World had been thought by some to make it untranslatable but in this episode we hear from the author about the mythical basis for this modern tale of border crossing, from translator Lisa Dillman about meeting the challenges of bringing the Spanish text to an English readership, from cultural critic and commentator Maya Jaggi about what makes the book so special and from publisher Stefan Tobler about why translating fiction is so important to And Other Stories as they celebrate their 10th birthday. Featuring: Yuri Herrera, Stefan Tobler, Lisa Dillman, Maya Jaggi
This Is The Book: Keeping The House
44:41Publisher And Other Stories have spent the last decade bringing bold new voices to English readers and in their anniversary year they continue to break new ground. Interdisciplinary artist Tice Cin takes the reader inside the Turkish men's clubs and households of North London for a unique perspective on the heroin trade that spans generations and borders. In this episode we hear from those around the publication about what makes Cin so exciting as an artist and she shares some of what she has had to go through to bring us this striking debut novel. Featuring: Tice Cin, Max Porter, Stefan Tobler, Nichola Smalley, Donald Winchester.
How We Made: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell with Susanna Clarke
42:01When Susanna Clarke's magical vision of an alternate Georgian England arrived it became an instant bestseller but as we discover in this episode, the book's journey was far from certain. Clarke shares how a writer's confidence can wax and wane and we discover how secret support behind the scenes helped her writing come into the light. Featuring Neil Gaiman and voices from publishing and bookselling, this is the inside story of an 'instant' classic. Featuring: Susanna Clarke, Neil Gaiman, Alexandra Pringle, Kathleen Farrar, Josh Prince, Becky Kelly
How We Made: H is for Hawk with Helen Macdonald
37:46In 2014 a book with a striking bird on its cover appeared in bookshops but what kind of book was it? Was it a memoir about grief, or a book about training a goshawk? Was it a biography of T. H. White, or was it nature writing? Or was it perhaps a melding of all of these things? And how did this hybrid book go on to become an award winner and international bestseller? In this episode we hear from Helen Macdonald about turning grief into almost a new genre of writing and from the team at publisher Jonathan Cape, which celebrates its centenary this year, about creating a modern classic. Featuring: Helen Macdonald, Dan Franklin, Suzanne Dean, Chris Wormell, Ruth Waldram, Rob Verner Jeffreys, Steve Bundy
How We Made: Ducks, Newburyport with Lucy Ellman
42:35Being a small, independent publisher doesn't mean thinking small, and with prize-winning successes already under their belt, Galley Beggar Press took on the challenge of publishing a novel consisting of a single sentence that ran for more than a thousand pages. Ducks, Newburyport went on to win prizes too as well as Booker recognition and in this episode we hear from Lucy Ellman about how you write a stream-of-consciousness novel on this scale and from those involved in publishing it about the challenges in typesetting it, printing it, and narrating the audio book. Featuring Lucy Ellman, Sam Jordison, Eloise Millar, Alex Billington, Stephanie Ellyne, Aaron Myles, Rob Verner-Jeffreys
How We Made: A Kind Of Spark with Elle McNicoll
40:08With perfect timing, our episode telling the inside story of A Kind of Spark by Elle McNicoll arrives just as we announce that it has been chosen as the overall winner of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2021. We speak to those involved about the serendipity of how it came to be published, why it's important to get the right people in the room when it comes to publishing and why this book is not just important but also one of the best books for children of the last decade. Featuring: Elle McNicoll, David Stevens, Eishar Brar, Lauren Gardner, Marissaié Jordan, Kay Wilson, Lizzie Huxley Jones, Florentyna Martin
This Is The Book: Why We Kneel, How We Rise
34:32As a bowler for the West Indies, Michael Holding was well known for his measured run up and devastating fast bowling, an approach he has taken into his punditry where he is always calm and controlled but also frank and honest with his opinions. So when rain delayed the start of play and conversation was steered to the impact of racism in cricket in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, Holding spoke with a clarity which forced everyone watching and those who caught up later to take notice of his words. A year on, the conversation he started has become a book, including the conversations he's had with other sporting icons, and another view of history that shows how important education is in eradicating racism and improving equality for all. In this episode we find out from those involved why this book is so important and their hopes for what it might achieve. Featuring: Michael Holding, Ed Hawkins, Ian Marshall, Samar Habib