The Penguin Podcast

The Penguin Podcast Podcast

Conversations with some our of leading authors and creative thinkers, as we seek to understand how they write and where their ideas come from. Guests bring to the interview a handful of objects that have inspired their work. #PenguinPodcast

Philip Pullman LIVE with Sophie Dahl
‘His Dark Materials’ author Philip Pullman, talks to Sophie Dahl live from the Sheldonian Theatre in Oxford. Philip has a new novel in The Book of Dust trilogy entitled ‘The Secret Commonwealth’, which continues the story of his protagonist Lyra, now aged 20. Philip brings objects that have inspired him including a ‘real’ alethiometer and he also reads an extract from his new book #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Jacqueline Wilson with Katy Brand
Jacqueline Wilson has a new Tracey Beaker book: ‘We Are the Beaker Girls’. The former children’s laureate, who has sold over 40 million books, talks to Katy Brand about how she gets inspired, bringing objects into the studio that help her create including a pair of swimming goggles and a trains timetable. #PenguinPodcast  For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Emma Kennedy with Katy Brand
Emma Kennedy, author, actress and TV writer talks to Katy Brand about her new book ‘The Things We Left Unsaid’. Emma’s previous books include ‘The Tent, The Bucket and Me’ which was adapted into The Kennedys for the BBC. She has also written children’s books and worked with the good and the great of British comedy (including Katy - so expect lots of laughter). Emma brought in objects that have inspired her including a tin of buttons and a discarded wedding bouquet #PenguinPodcast For information regarding ...


Rory Sutherland with Katy Brand
Rory Sutherland, the charismatic Vice Chairman of advertising agency Ogilvy, tells Katy how thinking counterintuitively can lead to success. Using examples from his Ted Talks (viewed 6.5 million times), his new book ‘Alchemy’ and the objects he brought in - he explains how ‘psycho-logic’ sells #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Malorie Blackman LIVE with Nihal Arthanayake
In this special LIVE edition from the Lowry in Manchester, Malorie Blackman OBE talks about the long-awaited fifth book in her Noughts and Crosses Series: ‘Crossfire’. Malorie has written over 70 books, is a former Children’s Laureate and has artists such as Stormzy counting themselves as super-fans. Malorie's chosen inspirational objects include ‘The Colour Purple’ by Alice Walker and a CD by Marvin Gaye. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Malorie Blackman with Nihal Arthanayake
In this special LIVE edition from the Lowry in Manchester, Malorie Blackman OBE talks about the long-awaited fifth book in her Noughts and Crosses Series: ‘Crossfire’. Malorie has written over 70 books, is a former Children’s Laureate and has artists such as Stormzy counting themselves as super-fans. Malorie's chosen inspirational objects include ‘The Colour Purple’ by Alice Walker and a CD by Marvin Gaye. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Jonathan Coe with Nihal Arthanayake
Jonathan Coe, author of political satires ‘What a Carve Up!’ and ‘The Rotters’ Club’ chats to Nihal about his new novel ‘Middle England’. Jonathan brings with him objects that have inspired his work and reveals what it’s like to be an Elvis impersonator warm-up act. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Diana Evans with Katy Brand
Bestselling author Diana Evans (‘26a’, ‘The Wonder’) is the perfect guest for this podcast. She tells Katy how objects are an integral part of her writing process and brings some along including a mini London telephone box and her trusty sketchbook. Diana also chats about her new award-winning novel ‘Ordinary People’ which was one of the New Yorker’s books of the year. #PenguinPodcast #InspirationalObjects For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Kit De Waal with Katy Brand
Kit De Waal, author of the critically acclaimed bestseller ‘My Name is Leon’ joins Katy in the studio. Kit talks about her latest book ‘The Trick to Time’ and brings objects that have inspired her including a track by Scott Matthews and a photo of Forlorn Point in Ireland.#PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Howard Jacobson with Nihal Arthanayake
Howard Jacobson joins Nihal in the studio to chat about his new book ‘Live a Little’. Howard, who has written sixteen novels including Booker prize-winning ‘The Finkler Question’, brings objects that have inspired him including a playbill and a painting. He also tells the story of the time Kylie Minogue called him ‘a b**tard’ (in a good way). #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Mark Haddon with Katy Brand
Mark Haddon tells Katy Brand how art inspires him – choosing objects including an oil painting and a David Hockney print to explain. The award-winning ‘Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time’ author also talks about his new book ‘The Porpoise’ based partly on the legend of Antiochus, it also features tales of time travel, pirates and semi-naked wrestling. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Nigella Lawson with Katy Brand
Nigella talks about her first cookbook ‘How To Eat’, which is 20 years old and has now been made into an audiobook. She tells Katy why she thought this would the only book about food she would write, why some of her ideas have changed since writing and what her rider is when working abroad. Nigella beings in some objects that inspire her including a tea caddy and a photograph of her kitchen table. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Elif Shafak with Nihal Arthanayake
Bestselling Turkish-British author Elif Shafak, chats to Nihal about the brilliant idea behind her new novel ’10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World’ (10:38 is the period of time a brain can still be active after death). Elif, who has also received standing ovations at Ted Talks and is an academic and journalist, explains how she finds it impossible to write without noise and brings with her objects that inspire her work including a pair of headphones and a wooden statue of Don Quixote.     #PenguinPod...

Philippa Perry with Nihal Arthanayake
'The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read’ by Philippa Perry recently topped the Sunday Times Bestseller List and has been called ‘a parenting book for people who don’t normally buy them’. Philippa, a psychotherapist and broadcaster, talks about not judging parents, how there is no 'good and bad' and what to do about screen time. Philippa’s objects that inspire her writing, include a tiny pair of walking boots and a TV remote control. We also hear an extract from the audiobook. #PenguinPodcast For informati...

John Boyne with Nihal Arthanayake
John Boyne, bestselling author of ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ chats to Nihal Arthanayake about harnessing ideas around his new YA book ‘My Brother’s Name is Jessica’. John brings objects into the studio that have inspired him including a football, a locked black box and reveals the reason behind his Kate Bush tattoo. #PenguinPodcast #KateBush #JohnIrving #JohnBoyne For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Ian McEwan with Katy Brand
Booker prize-winning author Ian McEwan visits the Penguin studio to talk about his new novel ‘Machines Like Me’ - set in an alternatives 1980’s in which synthetic humans are on sale. Ian and Katy talk about the ethics of AI, why drinking wine on the top of a mountain is good for your health and how being an A list Hollywood screenwriter can be ‘the ruin of many an English novelist’. Ian’s objects of inspiration include steel drinking cups and a drawing of a squirrel’s skull. #PenguinPodcast For information...

Matt Parker with Katy Brand
What happened when engineers fixed an aeroplane window with bolts ever so slightly too short (spoiler: the pilot did not stay seated). Mathematician and stand-up comedian (yes, he does both), Matt Parker, explains to Katy Brand how maths mistakes in everyday life can have BIG consequences. He brings with him the rogue aeroplane bolts to the studio as well as objects that have helped him write his latest book ‘Humble Pi: A Comedy of Maths Errors’. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy,...

Best Of (Part 2) with Katy Brand
In this special edition, Katy Brand selects highlights from past episodes featuring Stephen Fry, Salman Rushdie, Ruby Wax, Zadie Smith, Caitlin Moran, Romesh Ranganathan, Reggie Yates, Ian Rankin, Michael Palin, Pat Barker, Arundhati Roy, Michael Morpurgo and many more. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Marlon James with Nihal Arthanayake
Man Booker prize winner Marlon James tells Nihal why his new novel ‘Black Leopard, Red Wolf’ is a sort of African ‘Game of Thrones’. The Jamaican author of ‘A Brief History of Seven Killings’ talks about objects that inspire his creativity including comic books, superheroes and how he loves to draw maps. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Simon Amstell with Katy Brand
Simon Amstell - comedian, presenter, director and writer talks to Katy Brand about his new book ‘Help’, a memoir interspersed with sections of his stand-up gigs. Simon brings with him objects that have helped him to write and create (including post-it notes and a voice recorder) and explains why people told him to stop being funny, and how taking Ayahuasca in the Amazon rainforest helped cure his depression. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Imogen Hermes Gowar with Katy Brand
‘The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock’ was nominated for the Women’s Prize for Fiction and was The Times Historical Fiction Book of the Year. Imogen Hermes Gowar talks to Katy Brand about the highs and lows of huge success as a first time author and brought in objects to the Penguin studio that inspire her creativity, including an old bottle of red ink and a packet of Jaffa Cakes. #PenguinPodcast  ‘The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock' is available as an audiobook to download now.   https://itunes.apple.com/gb/audiobook/the-...


Best Of (Part 1) with Katy Brand
In this special edition, Katy Brand selects some of the best bits from past episodes featuring Johnny Marr, Romesh Ranganathan, Ruby Wax, Tim Peake, Zadie Smith, Sebastian Faulkes, William Boyd, Jeff Kinney, Michael Palin, Pat Barker and Caitlin Moran. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Romesh Ranganathan with Nihal Arthanayake
Comedian Romesh Ranganathan tells Nihal why he thinks Richard Pryor is the greatest stand-up of all time and how he practices his set in front of an imaginary audience in his garage. Romesh’s chosen inspirational objects include a Public Enemy CD, a microphone stand and a Trading Places poster. Expect lots and lots of laughter. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Michael Morpurgo with Katy Brand
Michael Morpurgo has written a new version of ‘The Snowman’ inspired by the original story by Raymond Briggs which is now 40 years old. The author of 130 books including War Horse, Michael tells Katy why Christmas is so special. If you’re not feeling festive this will definitely get you in the mood with Michael’s special objects including a family Santa Claus decoration with an amazing history. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Marcus Zusak with Katy Brand
Markus Zusak, author of ‘The Book Thief’ (which spent over 500 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list) joins Katy Brand. He talks about his much anticipated new book ‘Bridge of Clay’ and why it took him over 13 years to write. Markus also explains why special objects are a big feature in his latest book and help unlock his creative process. He brings a surfboard fin, a pebble shaped like a Zippo lighter, postcards and a famous Australian racehorse into the studio! #PenguinPodcast For information regar...

Pat Barker with Katy Brand
Pat Barker, bestselling author of the Regeneration trilogy and Booker Prize winner talks to Katy Brand about her latest book ‘Silence of the Girls’ based on the Trojan wars. Pat also brings in objects to the Penguin studio that have inspired her including a copy of Homer’s Iliad, a bronze age loom weight and a pile of dad rats (luckily just a photo). #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Michael Palin with David Baddiel
A special live edition of the Penguin Podcast with comedian, actor, and writer Michael Palin is hosted by David Baddiel. Having been in Monty Python’s Flying Circus and made award-winning travel documentaries around the world, Palin talks about his latest book, ‘Erebus; The Story of a Ship’. He brings objects that have inspired him included an African stool, a piece of fuselage from Ernest Hemingway’s plane and a postcard written by Spike Milligan.#PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy...


Tim Peake with Katy Brand
Could you make the grade as an astronaut? Katy Brand talks to Tim Peake about his new ‘Astronaut Selection Test Book’. Tim reveals what is was like hanging onto the outside of the International Space Station with one hand (whilst looking at the rest of The Universe over his right shoulder)…. and what is was like watching ‘Star Wars’ in space. Tim’s chosen inspirational objects include a flag from the back of his spacesuit. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Helena Kennedy with Nihal Arthanayake
Lawyer, broadcaster and author Helena Kennedy talks to Nihal Arthanayake about her latest novel, ‘Eve Was Shamed’. The book comes 25 years after her first book ‘Eve Was Framed’ which led to a number of key reforms for women. Her latest work sees how the British Justice system is still failing women. Helena brought along objects that inspire her including her father’s rosary and beach pebbles that help her come up with new ideas. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/...

William Boyd with Nihal Arthanayake
Bestselling author William Boyd tells Nihal Arthanayake about his writing methodology; years of research before he even sits down to write. Known for writing novels which span continents and timescales, commissioned by the Fleming Estate to write a James Bond novel and working with David Bowie, Boyd is something of a phenomenon. He’s in the studio to talk about his latest novel, Love Is Blind, and brings with him objects that have inspired him, including a piano tuning hammer and a pistol. #PenguinPodcast ...


Colm Tóibín with Katy Brand
Bestselling author Colm Tóibín tells Katy Brand why he returns to the theme of home again and again in his work and what it’s like writing about violence for the first time. Colm wrote ‘Brooklyn’, which was made into a feature film starring Saoirse Ronan, and has been nominated for the Booker three times. He brings objects into the Penguin studio that have inspired his new novel ‘House of Names’ including a Greek play and an opera CD. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast...

Sebastian Faulks with Nihal Arthanayake
Bestselling author Sebastian Faulks tells Nihal Arthanayake how he creates characters, harnesses history to build stories and how he came up with ideas for his new novel ‘Paris Echo’. This year marks the 25th anniversary of Sebastian’s novel ‘Birdsong’ which has sold millions of copies and is taught as part of the National Curriculum. Sebastian also shares some objects that have inspired his writing including an original letter penned by Wordsworth.    #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data pr...

Viv Groskop with Katy Brand
Journalist and novelist Viv Groskop joins Katy Brand in the Penguin studio to talk about herBook ‘The Anna Karenina Fix’, a very funny memoir and self-help book which explains how Russian literature has some valuable life lessons. As a young child Viv believed her surname was Russian, which led her to studying, living there and becoming editor at large for Russian Vogue. She later found out she’s not the slightest bit Russian, but recounts what she learnt along the way from the country and its literature. V...


Claire Tomalin with David Baddiel
Biographer Claire Tomalin joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to chat about the art of writing about other people’s lives. She has written bestselling biographies including Mary Wollstonecraft, Charles Dickens and Jane Austen and has been called ‘one of the greatest biographers of our age’. Claire has now written about her own fascinating and surprising life and brings objects into the studio that inspired her including a plaster foot and a Samuel Pepys medal. #PenguinPodcast For information regardin...

Jane Fallon with David Baddiel
Bestselling author Jane Fallon joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about her new book ‘Faking Friends’. Jane is an award-winning TV producer behind shows such as This Life and EastEnders and has written eight books – selling over a million copies. She talks to David about some of the objects that have been part of her creative process including a Christmas tree covered in very unusual ornaments and the cover of her first book ‘Getting Rid of Matthew’. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding...

Caitlin Moran with David Baddiel
Caitlin Moran joins David Baddiel in the Penguin Studio. The critically acclaimed journalist and author penned her first book aged 13, has been writing for The Times since she was 18 and has had bestselling novels including ‘How to be a Woman’ and ‘How to Build a Girl’. She’s in to talk about her new book, ‘How to Be Famous’, and bringsobjects that have inspired her including: headphones; a Wolverhampton library ticket; a letter from Clive Anderson and a swimming costume (which she carries everywhere with h...


Gabourey Sidibe with Katy Brand
Oscar nominated actress Gabourey Sidibe joins Katy Brand in the Penguin studio to talk about her hilarious and moving memoir ‘This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare’. Gabourey’s breakthrough role was as Precious in the feature film and she’s since starred in TV shows American Horror Story, The Big C and Empire. Gabourey talks about what her sources of inspiration including a collection of NSYNC dolls and her beloved cat Aaron. She also reveals her constant fear of dinosaurs! #PenguinPodcast For information...

Arundhati Roy with Kirsty Lang
Arundhati Roy joins Kirsty Lang for a special live edition of the Penguin Podcast. Arundhati burst onto the international literary scene 20 years ago with her novel ‘The God of Small Things’. Since then she has written non-fiction books and essays on contemporary politics, culture, human rights and environmental issues. She returns to the fiction scene to talk about her second novel ‘The Ministry of Utmost Happiness’. With her she brings objects which have inspired her including a newspaper article of an ab...

Salman Rushdie with David Olusoga
Author Salman Rushdie joins David Olusoga in the Penguin Studio. Salman’s 13 novels have won countless awards worldwide and his second novel ‘Midnight’s children’ won the Best of the Booker over its 40 year history. Salman talks about his latest novel, ’The Golden House’ bringing with him objects that inspired it, including a copy of The Satyricon by Petronius, and a photo of The Joker from Batman. #PenguinPodcast   For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Simon Mayo and David Baddiel
Radio broadcaster and author Simon Mayo joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about his first adult novel 'Mad Blood Stirring'. Simon hosts Radio 2’s Drivetime show, the BBC’s flagship film review show Kermode and Mayo and has previously written 4 young adult books. He brings with him objects that have inspired his writing including a map, the periodic table and a Stephen King book. #PenguinPodcast   For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Christie Watson with Paul Smith
Before she was a critically acclaimed author, Christie Watson was a nurse for 20 years, she joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about ‘The Language of Kindness’. It’s an extraordinary account of a profession that witnesses everything from birth to death and a lot in between. Christie brings objects which inspired her work into the studio, including a statue of Florence Nightingale, a fob watch, a mini book on nursing and a photo of a fishing boat. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your d...

Tracy Chevalier with Paul Smith
Much-loved author Tracy Chevalier has written nine novels, including ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’ which sold 5 million copies worldwide and was made into a film starring Colin Firth and Scarlett Johansson. Tracy joins Paul Smith (Maximo Park) in the Penguin studio to talk about her latest work, ‘New Boy’, a retelling of Othello set in an American school in the 1970s. Tracy brings objects which inspired her work including a tiny music box, her notebook and a school photo. #PenguinPodcast For information rega...


Eoin Colfer with Paul Smith
Author of the award winning 'Artemis Fowl’, Eoin Colfer, joins Maxïmo Park frontman, Paul Smith, in the Penguin studio. Eoin talks about his book ‘And Another Thing’, the sixth instalment of the 'Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’ (commissioned by the Douglas Adams Estate), which has recently been made into a drama for BBC Radio 4 starring the original cast - 40 years after the first comedy series aired. Eoin chooses objects that inspired his writing include a shabby red-checked dressing gown and some David ...

Afua Hirsch with David Olusoga
Guardian Columnist and author Afua Hirsch joins historian and broadcaster David Olusoga in the Penguin studio. Afua talks about her bestselling book ‘BRIT (ish)’ which tackles questions of race, identity and belonging in the UK. She brings along objects that inspired her work including a hot water bottle, poetry she wrote when she was a child and an Alan Paton book. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Deborah Levy with David Baddiel
Playwright, novelist, poet and author Deborah Levy joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about her critically acclaimed novel ‘Hot Milk’, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2016. Deborah has written 6 novels including ‘Swimming Home’ (another Man Booker finalist), has written extensively for the BBC and her work has been staged by the Royal Shakespeare Company. She tells David about her upcoming autobiography ‘The Cost of Living’ and brings along objects that have inspired her wor...


Reggie Yates with David Baddiel
Radio 1 DJ, actor and television presenter Reggie Yates joins David Baddiel in the studio to talk about his new book. ‘Unseen’ explores how he made the transition from TV personality to documentary storyteller, covering difficult subjects such as far right groups in Russia to gun crime in Chicago. Reggie brings with him objects that inspired his writing, including DJ decks, a moleskin notebook and humbug mints. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Mohsin Hamid with Paul Smith
‘Exit West’ was chosen by Barack Obama as one of his favourite books of last year. The author Mohsin Hamid, joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio, and has chosen five objects that have inspired his book. They include a book by C.S. Lewis, a photograph of a bomb blast in Lahore taken by his sister and a CD by Gilberto Gil and Jorge Ben. Mohsin is a two time Booker prize nominee and his novel ‘The Reluctant Fundamentalist’ was made into a major motion picture starring Riz Ahmed and Kate Hudson. #PenguinPodca...

Jojo Moyes with Konnie Huq
Jojo Moyes, author of the hugely successful novel ‘Me Before You’, joins us in the Penguin studio to talk about the final book in her Lou Clarke trilogy ‘Still Me’. Jojo’s books have sold more than 30 million copies and she’s one of the few authors to have had three novels on the New York Times bestseller list at the same time. ‘Me Before You’ was also adapted into a major feature film starring Emilia Clarke and Sam Clafin. Jojo introduces five objects that have been an inspiration - including a bumblebee n...


C.J. Tudor with Konnie Huq
The Chalk Man is one of this years most anticipated thrillers. Its author, C.J. Tudor, joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about writing her debut novel and how it became part of a furious bidding war. C.J. brings in five objects that have inspired her writing, including a Stephen King book and a glass dolphin. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Jeff Kinney with Konnie Huq
Jeff Kinney, author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest in the series: The Getaway. Jeff’s books have sold more than 194 million copies, they’ve inspired four feature films and he’s been named as one of Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in the World. Jeff brings in some objects to the studio that have inspired his writing including: An Uncle Scrooge Comic, a boom box and an airplane sickness bag. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding ...

Ian Rankin with David Baddiel
Author of the hugely successful Inspector Rebus novels, Ian Rankin, joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about his short story made for radio, The Deathwatch Journal. Ian is regarded at one of the most popular authors of the last 100 years, has won four Crime Writer’s Association Dagger Awards and has received an OBE for services to literature. A map of Edinburgh, Hawkwind single and Captain Scarlet toy car are among the objects Ian brings to the studio. #PenguinPodcast For information regardi...


Nina Stibbe with Konnie Huq
Author of 'Love, Nina’ (adapted for TV starring Helena Bonham Carter) and the critically acclaimed novels, 'Man at the Helm' and 'Paradise Lodge', Nina Stibbe joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio. Nina talks about her new book 'An Almost Perfect Christmas' and kicks off the festive season by bringing in objects including an unusual Christmas tree, a turkey on the loo and her mum. #PenguinPodcast  For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

No Such Thing as a Penguin Podcast
Fact researchers, presenters of the hugely successful No Such Thing as a Fish podcast, TV show hosts and authors the QI Elves join Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about The Book of the Year. Dan Schreiber, Anna Ptaszynski, Andrew Hunter Murray and James Harkin bring in an object each which has inspired their book on the fascinating and funny facts of the year including an Oscar statuette, The Loch Ness Monster's dandruff and a pint of champagne. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data ...

Stephen Fry with David Baddiel
Comedian, actor, broadcaster and writer Stephen Fry joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about his new book Mythos, which retells the Greek Myths. Stephen brings in words (instead of objects) that have inspired him and he and David discuss typewriters, AI teachers and of course the Greek gods. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Malcolm Gladwell with Paul Smith
The author of five New York Times bestsellers and one of the world's most successful non-fiction writers, Malcolm Gladwell speaks to Paul Smith down the line from LA. Malcolm talks about the themes behind Blink, Outliers, David & Goliath and on writing his new book. Plus he selects five objects that have inspired his chart-topping podcast Revisionist History. #PenguinPodcast (Photo: Bill Wadman) For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Rachel Botsman with Konnie Huq
Award winning author Rachel Botsman is a world-renowned trust expert and her Ted Talks views are in the millions. She joins Konnie Huq in the studio to reveal how we are on the cusp of one of the biggest social transformations in human history. Rachel has brought with her some objects that have inspired her latest book Who Can You Trust, including her engagement ring and an Alexa bot. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Harlan Coben with Konnie Huq
Author Harlan Coben has over 70 million books in print across the world and his last 10 novels all debuted at number one on the New York Times bestseller list. He joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest book Don't Let Go and he's brought in some objects that have inspired him as a writer, including a basketball and a signed script from the TV series Modern Family. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Anthony Horowitz with Konnie Huq
Bestselling author of the Alex Rider teen series Anthony Horowitz, joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest book. The Word is Murder is the first in his new series of crime novels. Anthony brings some objects that inspire his writing, including a human skull and a fountain pen with a real diamond in the lid. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Simon Sinek with Konnie Huq
Author and motivational speaker Simon SInek joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his book Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don't. Simon brings some objects that have inspired him, including a rare military coin and a photo of Victoria and Dennis Hopper. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Tim Weaver with Paul Smith
Bestselling author Tim Weaver joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about the latest instalment in his David Raker series, I Am Missing. Tim bring along objects including a missing persons poster, his favourite Batman comic and a picture of Hallsands in Devon as he talks about why he wanted to do something different with this novel, and how he first fell in love with writing when his parents bought him a typewriter. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/priv...


Naomi Klein with David Baddiel
Award-winning journalist and author Naomi Klein joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about her new book No Is Not Enough. Naomi brings along objects including a stitch unpicker and a model of a woman blowing a shell as she talks about sounding the alarm on climate change, trashing the Trump megabrand and how to win the world we need. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Simon Sebag Montefiore with Paul Smith
Historian and novelist Simon Sebag Montefiore joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about the final instalment in his Moscow trilogy, Red Sky At Noon. He chooses objects including a machete and a Russian doll as he talks about researching the role of the Russian cavalry in the Second World War, reveals why he loves writing about love, and explains why Donald Trump has a schoolboy crush on Vladimir Putin. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Helen Fielding with Konnie Huq
Helen Fielding joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about her latest book Bridget Jones’s Baby. Helen chooses objects including her own diary and her favourite writing chair as she talks about how she first dreamt up the character of Bridget Jones, and why Bridget’s struggles as a thirty-something ‘singleton’ are even more relevant today. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Carlo Rovelli with Konnie Huq
Physicist and bestselling author Carlo Rovelli joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his book Reality Is Not What It Seems: The Journey to Quantum Gravity. Carlo brings along objects including a photograph of himself as a student with his pet goat, and his trusty notebook as he talks about first falling in love with physics, and explains why all scientists are rebels. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Jane Corry with Paul Smith
Bestselling author Jane Corry joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about her new thriller, Blood Sisters. Jane brings along objects including a photograph of her grandmother and her wedding ring as she explains how teaching creative writing in prisons helped to inspire her books, and why she loves living, and writing, by the sea. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Jo Nesbo with Konnie Huq
Thriller writer Jo Nesbo joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his new novel The Thirst, the latest instalment in his bestselling Harry Hole series. Jo brings along objects including a photograph of his favourite coffee shop and rock climbing ropes as he tells Konnie about bringing Harry Hole out of retirement to track down a vampirist, and explains how he combines his writing career with singing in a chart-topping band. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit aca...


Jon Culshaw with Meera Syal
Comedian and audiobook narrator Jon Culshaw joins Meera Syal in the Penguin studio in a special Doctor Who edition of the podcast. Jon brings along objects including his junior telescope and a cassette recorder as he talks about his lifelong love of astronomy, and about bringing the Doctor Who stories to life in audiobooks. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Brad Stone with David Baddiel
Journalist and bestselling author Brad Stone joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about his new book, The Upstarts: How Uber, Airbnb and the Killer Companies of the New Silicon Valley are Changing the World. Brad brings along objects including a copy of Hokusai’s The Great Wave and a photograph of Airbnb founder Brian Chesky in a bodybuilding competition as he explains how companies like Uber and Airbnb have rewritten the traditional rules of business, and changed the way we live our lives. #Pe...

Elan Mastai with David Baddiel
Screenwriter Elan Mastai joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about his debut novel All Our Wrong Todays. Elan brings along objects including a bad avocado and his grandfather’s copy of Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle as he talks about his lifelong love of science fiction, and explains why his dog is his writing assistant. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


David Hepworth with Paul Smith
David Hepworth joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest book 1971: Never A Dull Moment. David brings along objects including his copy of David Bowie’s Hunky Dory and a picture of himself aged twenty-one as he explains why 1971 was the golden year for rock music, and reminisces about collecting Ringo Starr’s bins. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

John Boyne with Paul Smith
Bestselling author John Boyne joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest novel The Heart’s Invisible Furies. John brings along objects including models of Tintin and Pinocchio, a picture of his home and a selection of his favourite books as he talks about setting his novel in his native country, attitudes towards same-sex marriage in Ireland, his lifelong stationery fetish and why you have to be a reader before you can be a writer. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data p...

Harriet Harman with Konnie Huq
Harriet Harman joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about her book A Woman’s Work. Harriet brings along objects including her Labour rosette, her favourite apple crumble recipe and her lucky jacket (complete with very large shoulder pads). She talks about being pregnant when she joined the 97% male House of Commons in 1982, the rights that she has fought for over the course of her career, and the changes that she would like to see in the future. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your da...


Ruby Wax with David Baddiel
Ruby Wax joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about her book A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled. Ruby brings along objects including her graduation gown, a pair of red knickers and a plastic pig as she explains why she is fascinated by how the brain works, and how mindfulness has changed her life. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Ali Land with Paul Smith
Ali Land joins Paul Smith in the Penguin studio to talk about her debut novel Good Me Bad Me. Ali brings along a selection of objects, including a scrapbook she made whilst working as a mental health nurse and a pair of sandals from Bondi Beach, as she explains why she is fascinated by the human psyche, and how travelling the world helped her to write her novel. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Tom Fletcher with Konnie Huq
Singer-songwriter turned children’s author Tom Fletcher joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about his first novel The Christmasaurus. Tom discusses his lifelong obsession with Christmas and dinosaurs, and brings along a selection of objects including his miniature Christmas tree, which sits on his bedside table throughout the year, and his trusty red coffee mug. He reveals what Christmas was like in the McFly band house, and explains why writing books is a dream come true for him. #PenguinPodcast...


James Oswald with Konnie Huq
James Oswald joins Konnie Huq in the Penguin studio to talk about the latest book in his Detective Inspector Tony McLean mystery series, The Damage Done. James brings along a number of objects that helped shape the series, including his walking boots, his notebook and a picture of his tractor as he explains how he combines writing with running a farm, and why you shouldn’t get on the wrong side of a crime writer. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Zadie Smith with David Baddiel
Zadie Smith joins David Baddiel in the Penguin studio to talk about her latest novel, Swing Time. Zadie brings along objects including a carved wooden head, a sequinned glove and a book on Fred Astaire as she talks dancing, motherhood and the importance of knowing your roots. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Johnny Marr with David Baddiel
Musician, songwriter and singer Johnny Marr joins David Baddiel in the Penguin Studio to talk about his autobiography Set The Boy Free (and jam with David on the guitar). Johnny talks about first falling in love with the sound of the guitar listening to the Everly Brothers, reveals how he developed a passion for reading whilst bunking off school and explains how he handled huge fame as a teenager. He brings along a selection of treasured objects including The Complete Essays of Aldous Huxley, a Marc Bolan E...


Alexandra Shulman with Richard E. Grant
Vogue editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin Studio to talk about her book Inside Vogue: A Diary of My 100th Year, which documents the style bible’s centenary celebrations. Alexandra talks about her own twenty four years at the helm of British Vogue, reveals how she managed to pull off a royal cover coup featuring the Duchess of Cambridge, and considers the impact of Brexit on the fashion industry. She brings along a number of objects that influenced Inside Vogue, including ...

The Football Ramble
The foursome behind the UK’s biggest independent sports podcast, The Football Ramble, take over the Penguin studio to talk about their debut book, also called The Football Ramble. Marcus, Luke, Pete and Jim discuss football’s early beginnings; dissect the ‘media machine’ behind the modern game; marvel at the gargantuan amounts of money at stake and conclude that grassroots football is perhaps ultimately more enjoyable than the professional game. They also bring in various mementos including a pair of old bo...

Clare Balding with Richard E. Grant
Clare Balding joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin Studio to talk about her first children’s book The Racehorse Who Wouldn’t Gallop. Clare brings along a number of objects that inspired her book, including her family jockey silks and her Olympic torch from the 2012 Games, as she explains why children love stories about ponies and why she was determined to write a book with a girl-power message. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Robert Harris with Richard E. Grant
Author Robert Harris joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest novel, Conclave. Robert explains why the election of a new Pope is the perfect setting for a thriller and talks about being given an exclusive tour of the Vatican as part of his research. He brings along his first typewriter, which he bought for £10 when he was twelve years old, and explains why having a bust of Cicero sitting on his desk helps to focus his mind. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data pr...

Highlights from the Penguin Podcast - Episode 2
The second of two special editions of the Penguin podcast, looking back at some of the standout moments from the past year courtesy of guests including Shami Chakrabarti, Louis de Bernieres and Paula Hawkins. With a rallying call to all would-be writers from Neil Gaiman, procrastination tips from John Finnemore and advice from Irvine Welsh on finding your voice, this podcast documents the highs and lows of an author’s career. It also reflects on some of the curious objects that guests have brought along to ...

Highlights from the Penguin Podcast - Episode 1
The first of two special editions of the Penguin podcast looking at some of the highlights from the past year. Featuring guests including Bill Bryson, Chris Packham and Pat Barker, a really wide array of topics are covered, ranging from libraries all the way to labiaplasty. Various objects that have played in important part in shaping our guests careers will also be discussed, including a cow, a gas mask and a fart in a jar. Yes, really. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit ac...


Shappi Khorsandi with Richard E. Grant
Comedian Shappi Khorsandi joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about her debut novel, Nina is Not OK. Quite dark and very funny, it focuses on the teenage struggles of Nina, who absolutely does NOT have a drink problem. Shappi brings with her a number of objects that have shaped her career, ranging from Morph to Charlie Chaplin, and tells Richard how the pain of leaving her beloved homeland of Iran still brings her to tears. And Shappi makes it quite clear that she is not Nina - OK! #Penguin...

Emma Kennedy with Richard E. Grant
Writer and actress Emma Kennedy joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about her bestselling memoir The Tent, The Bucket and Me, which charts her disastrous family holidays. She brings along a number of objects that inspired her book, including a pink bucket, a Land Rover called Bessie and some questionable seafood. Emma reminisces about many memorable incidents, concluding that camping in the 1970s was essentially National Service for children. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your ...

John Finnemore with Richard E. Grant
Comedian John Finnemore joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about his award-winning shows Cabin Pressure, Double Acts and John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme. Renowned for his wordplay, John admits that writing doesn’t always come easily and confesses that he has a “heart-breaking” ability to procrastinate (often with tinfoil). John brings along a number of objects that have influenced his career, including his father’s airline hat and his bicycle, and observes how Benedict Cumberbatch sing...


Irvine Welsh with Richard E. Grant
Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh joins Richard E. Grant down the line from Chicago to talk about bringing back the incendiary Francis Begbie in his latest novel The Blade Artist. Irvine talks about a number of objects that shaped and inspired the novel, including a copy of The Big Issue and a pair of white gym socks. Irvine muses on how art can transform lives, talks about writing ultra-violence and explains the difference between a psychopath and a sociopath (sociopaths go into banking or politics). #Peng...

Chris Packham with Richard E. Grant
Writer and wildlife presenter Chris Packham joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about his memoir, Fingers In The Sparkle Jar. Chris brings along a number of objects that shaped his book, including a fox skull, a set of hawk bells and his first Clash ticket stub, as he explains why he has more honest relationships with animals than he does with people. Chris reminisces about badger watching in a pair of bondage trousers, talks about how children don’t explore the outdoors enough, and explain...

Alain de Botton with Richard E. Grant
Writer and philosopher Alain de Botton joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about his latest novel, The Course of Love. Alain brings along a number of objects that shaped his book, including his copy of Virginia Woolf’s essay The Docks of London and a recording of Bach’s Mass in B Minor, as he explains why he decided to turn his attention to what happens after happily ever after. Crushes and sulks come under Alain’s philosophical microscope as he explains why love is more dangerous than a nu...


Francesca Martinez with Richard E. Grant
Award-winning comedian Francesca Martinez joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about her memoir What the **** is Normal?! Francesca brings along a number of objects that shaped her book, including a photo of her beloved grandparents and a poem to her first boyfriend, as she talks about discarding the label of cerebral palsy. She reveals her careers advisor’s reaction to her acting ambitions, explains why stand-up comedy changed her life and discusses her dreams for a world where people aren’...

Shami Chakrabarti with Richard E. Grant
Shami Chakrabarti joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about her book On Liberty. Shami brings along a number of objects that shaped the book, including a goldfish bowl and her mother’s pearls, as she tells the story behind her human rights journey. She reveals a dark secret from her childhood, talks about her second day at Liberty, on the 11th September 2001, and explains why our civil liberties matter more than ever. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast...

Colm Tóibín with Richard E. Grant
Colm Tóibín joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about the novel behind the Oscar-nominated film Brooklyn. Colm brings along a number of objects that inspired the novel as he muses on the Irish immigrant experience, homesickness and life in 1950s New York. He reveals that the story of Brooklyn’s Eilis Lacey was inspired by a conversation that he overheard as a child, and explains how crucial it was for him that the big screen adaptation of Brooklyn was filmed in his hometown of Enniscorthy. ...


Howard Jacobson with Richard E. Grant
Howard Jacobson joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin studio to talk about his new novel Shylock Is My Name, a retelling of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice. A self-proclaimed reverer of Shakespeare, Howard explains how he rose to the challenge of adapting one of the bard’s more controversial plays, and questions how much has really changed for Jews since Shakespeare first created the part of Shylock. Howard’s objects include a table tennis bat and a photograph of his grandmother, and he talks about his...

Louis de Bernières with Richard E. Grant
The author of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin joins Richard E. Grant in the Penguin Studio to talk about his major new novel, The Dust That Falls From Dreams. Louis brings his great grandmother’s diaries and a handmade ‘guitar-lute’ into the Penguin studio and tells Richard how, for him, music wards off insanity. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Phil Redmond with Richard E. Grant
Phil Redmond, the creator of Brookside, Hollyoaks and Grange Hill, turns his hand from TV scripts to his first novel, Highbridge. Phil brings with him an assortment of objects that inspired the book, including an Army ration pack and a 'pay and throw’ phone and he discusses a variety of topics including how writing a novel differs from script writing, the impact of technology on society and the war on drugs. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Michael Acton Smith with Richard E. Grant
Michael Acton Smith, founder of Mind Candy who created Moshi Monsters demystifies mindfulness and talks to Richard about how it can be used to rewire our brains, change the way we see the world and help us unlock our true potential. Michael reveals what lead him to write ‘Calm’ and how mindfulness changed his life. For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Neil Gaiman with Richard E. Grant
Neil Gaiman discusses his friendship with the late Terry Pratchett and how they worked together to create Good Omens, a story of the impending apocalypse. Neil reveals how they relied on an answerphone to write the book and how Terry helped him with writers block. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Elvis Costello with Richard E. Grant
Elvis Costello brings his first guitar, musical mementoes from his Dad and a referee’s whistle to the Penguin Studio as he talks about his memoir ‘Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink’. Some of the topics of conversation include his many and varied musical collaborations; the importance of being able to perform live; the art of the lyricist and how his mother had an argument about a record player with Orson Welles. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Bill Bryson with Richard E. Grant – Live
Bill Bryson discusses The Road to Little Dribbling, his follow up to Notes From A Small Island. To tell the story of his journey Bill brings along his passport, a walking stick, a cow, Stonehenge and an ordnance survey map. Recorded with Richard E. Grant in front of a live audience at the Cambridge Corn Exchange. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Paula Hawkins with Richard E. Grant
Paula Hawkins brings a photo of her father, an Edward Hopper picture and a DVD of Rear Window to the Penguin Studio to talk about her bestselling book 'The Girl On The Train' with host Richard E Grant. Their discussion includes unreliable narrators, growing up in South Africa and the transition from business journalist to best selling author. Throughout the episode Richard plays excerpts from the audiobook, a multi cast production which is out now. For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast...

Meera Syal with Richard E. Grant
Meera Syal brings her copy of The Handmaid’s Tale, her Mother’s Indian passport and precious gold bangles given to her at her wedding to the Penguin Studio to talk about her latest book ’The House of Hidden Mothers’ with host Richard E Grant. Their discussion includes surrogacy, India’s fascination with babies and dowry payments as well as playing excerpts from the audiobook which is read by Meera and is available now. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...


Pat Barker with Richard E. Grant
Pat Barker brings a child’s gas mask, a jar of water from a wishing well and a notebook to the Penguin Studio to talk about her latest book Noonday. Host Richard E. Grant and Pat discuss witchcraft, the impact of WW2 as well as her personal journey to becoming an award winning novelist. Noonday is available as an audiobook featuring Juliet Stevenson and Anne Reid, out now on iTunes. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Bridget Christie with Richard E. Grant
Comedian Bridget Christie brings a yoghurt, a ‘votes for women' sash given to her by Emmeline Pankhurst’s great-granddaughter and a piece of gammon to the Penguin Studio to talk about her latest book ‘A Book For Her’. Host Richard E. Grant and Bridget discuss a wide range of topics including FGM, labiaplasty, how a yoghurt advert perpetuates rape myths and how a unsavoury incident in a book shop inspired the book. #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...

Kate Atkinson with Richard E. Grant
Kate Atkinson brings an antique silver hare, a Halifax Bomber and Beethoven’s 9th Symphony to the Penguin Studio to talk about her latest book ‘A God In Ruins’ with host Richard E Grant. The topics of conversation include the long-term effects of war on veterans, The Queen, how we age and the power of classical music to evoke an emotional response in us all.  #PenguinPodcast For information regarding your data privacy, visit acast.com/privacy...