The Reading Life

The Reading Life Podcast

Hear celebrated and up-and-coming authors read excerpts from new books and discuss their work with former Times-Picayune book editor Susan Larson.

The Reading Life: Fatima Shaik
On this week's Reading Life, Susan Larson interviews Fatima Shaik about her new book, “Economy Hall: The Hidden History of a Free Black Brotherhood.” Calendar Fatima Shaik discusses her book, "Economy Hall: The Hidden History of a Free Black Brotherhood," in a zoom conversation, Thursday, February 25, at 6 p.m., sponsored by Octavia Books. Go to octaviabooks.com for info....

The Reading Life: Bill Fagaly, Bernice McFadden & Maurice Carlos Ruffin
This week on The Reading Life: Bill Fagaly talks about “The Nightcrawler King: Memoirs of an Art Curator.” We’ll also hear from Bernice McFadden and Maurice Carlos Ruffin, contributors to the new anthology, “Four Hundred Souls: A Community History of African America, 1619-2019."...


The Reading Life: Howard Philips Smith, Claudia Gray
This week on The Reading Life: Howard Philips Smith, whose new book is “A Sojourn in Paradise: Jack Robinson in 1950s New Orleans.” And Claudia Gray, author of “House of El, Book One: The Shadow Threat.”...

The Reading Life: Robert Cangelosi & Jason Strada, Chris Champagne
This week on The Reading Life: Robert Cangelosi, Jr. author of “New Orleans Architecture, Vol. IX: Carrollton," and Jason Strada, executive director of Friends of the Cabildo. We;ll also hear from Chris Champagne, whose new book is "The Most Interesting League in the World: How the NFL Explains America."...

The Reading Life: Ladee Hubbard, Arthur Hardy
This week on The Reading Life: novelist Ladee Hubbard, author of “The Rib King,” which tells the story of the patriarch of the family we met in her first book, "The Talented Ribkins." We'll also hear from Arthur Hardy, publisher of Arthur Hardy's Mardi Gras Guide, now in its 45th edition....


The Reading Life: Andy Horowitz
Susan Larson talks with Tulane Assistant Professor of History, Andy Horowitz, about his book, “Katrina: A History, 1915 - 2015”, which received this year’s Humanities book award from the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities....


The Reading Life: Clint Bruce
Susan Larson talks with Clint Bruce about his recent book, “Afro-Creole Poetry in French from Louisiana’s Radical Civil War-Era Newspapers: A Bilingual Edition.”...


The Reading Life: Alice Quinn, Peter Cooley, Megan Holt
Susan Larson talks with Alice Quinn, editor of the new poetry anthology, “Together in a Sudden Strangeness: America’s Poets Respond to the Pandemic” and Megan Holt, executive director of Words and Music: A Literary Feast in New Orleans....


The Reading Life: Jarvis DeBerry, Kelly Harris-DeBerry
Susan talks with Jarvis DeBerry, whose new book is “I Feel to Believe: Collected Columns,” and Kelly Harris DeBerry, whose new collection of poems is “Freedom Knows My Name.” They will be appearing at the upcoming Words and Music: A Literary Feast in New Orleans .”...

The Reading Life: David Banush, Alex Beard
This week Susan talks with David Banush, the Dean of Libraries and Academic Information Resources at Tulane University about a new acquisition for the Howard-Tilton Library, the personal and literary archives of New Orleans writer Anne Rice. She also revisits her interview with artist/author Alex Beard, who’s doing something very unusual to get out the vote for this election....

The Reading Life: Joel Dinerstein, Gina Ferrara
This week on The Reading Life Joel Dinerstein talks about his new book, “Jazz: A Quick Immersion.” And poet Gina Ferrara talks about her new collection, “Weight of the Ripened.”...


The Reading Life with Richard Campanella
This week on The Reading Life: Our geographer-in-chief Richard Campanella talks about his new book, “The West Bank of Greater New Orleans: A Historical Geography.” Westwego! Algiers! Marrero! here we come! Friday at 12:30 and Sunday at noon on WWNO...

The Reading Life: Neal M.O. Walsh, Book Donations
Susan Larson talks with Neal M.O. Walsh about his new book, 'The Big Door Prize' and explores some of the places used books can be donated, as people are tidying up and organizing their homes....


The Reading Life: Amanda Boyden, Pam Fessler
This week on The Reading Life: Amanda Boyden, author of “I Got the Dog: A Memoir of Rising” & NPR’s Pam Fessler, author of “Carville’s Cure: Leprosy, Stigma, and the Fight for Justice.”...

The Reading: Matthew Van Meter, Iris Martin Cohen
This week, Susan Larson talks with Matthew Van Meter, author of “Deep Delta Justice: A Black Teen, His Lawyer, and Their Groundbreaking Battle for Civil Rights in the South”. We’ll also hear from novelist Iris Martin Cohen, author of “Last Call on Decatur Street.”...


The Reading Life: James Lee Burke, Stephanie Soileau
This week on The Reading Life Susan Larson talks with Stephanie Soileau, a Lake Charles native whose new story collection is “Last One Out Please Shut Off the Lights.” And James Lee Burke is back with “A Private Cathedral,” his 40 th book and the 23 rd in the beloved Dave Robicheaux series....

The Reading Life: Eric Jay Dolin, Sandy Rosenthal
Susan Larson talks with Eric Jay Dolin, whose new book is “ A Furious Sky: The Five-Hundred-Year History of America's Hurricanes.” We’ll also hear from Sandy Rosenthal, founder of the group, Levees.org, whose new book is “Words Whispered in Water: Why the Levees Broke in Hurricane Katrina.”...

The Reading Life: Ted Jackson
Susan Larson talks with photojournalist Ted Jackson , author of "You Ought to Do a Story About Me: Addiction, an Unlikely Friendship, and the Endless Quest for Redemption."...


The Reading Life with Edward Ball
On this week's BookMark, host Susan Larson talks with Edward Ball , author of "Life of a Klansman: A Family History in White Supremacy." Susan's full interview with Edward Ball airs on The Reading Life Friday at 12:30 and Sunday at noon, sponsored by Octavia Books....

BookMark with Sarah Broom
Susan Larson revisits New Orleanian Sarah Broom, author of "The Yellow House: A Memoir," winner of the National Book Award and New York Times bestseller. "The Yellow House" is now in paperback....

BookMark with Sheryl St. Germain
Host Susan Larson talks with poet, essayist, and Louisiana Writer Award winner Sheryl St. Germain about her new book, 50 Miles , and writing as part of grief and recovery....


BookMark with Sheryl St. Germain
Host Susan Larson talks with poet, essayist, and Louisiana Writer Award winner Sheryl St. Germain about her new book, 50 Miles , and writing as part of grief and recovery....

BookMark with Lindsay Sproul
In this week’s Bookmark , host Susan Larson catches up with Loyola University creative writing professor Lindsay Sproul (pronounced SPRAWL), author of the debut novel for young adults, "We Were Promised Spotlights."...

BookMark with Samantha Downing
In this week's BookMark, host Susan Larson catches up with novelist Samantha Downing , who's making publishing news with a film sale of her first novel, "My Lovely Wife"; a second novel, "He Started It," just out; and a seven-figure deal for her next three books....


BookMark with David Spielman
In this BookMark, Susan Larson talks with photographer David Spielman about capturing the distinctive images in his new book, "New Orleans Portrayed."...

BookMark with C.S. Harris
"While we wait for the return of The Reading Life later this summer, here's a BookMark from host Susan Larson, catching up with New Orleans mystery writer C.S. Harris, author of "Who Speaks for the Damned."...

BookMark with Kady Yellow
In this week's BookMark, Susan Larson talks with public art specialist Kady Yellow, who's the author of “New Orleans: Murals, Street Art, Graffiti, Volume 1.”...


BookMark with Katy Simpson Smith
"While we wait for the return of The Reading Life later this summer, here's a BookMark from host Susan Larson, catching up with New Orleans novelist Katy Simpson Smith, author of "The Everlasting." This BookMark was brought to you by Octavia Books...

The Reading Life with Eddie Glaude Jr.
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Princeton Professor Eddie Glaude Jr. about his forthcoming book, “Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Our Own.” Professor Glaude was scheduled to speak at the New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University, which has now been cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic....

The Reading Life with Erik Larson and Rita Woods
This week on The Reading Life: Bestselling author Erik Larson, whose new book is “The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz," a nd Rita Woods, whose first novel is “Remembrance.”...


The Reading Life with Jerry Mitchell and Cheryl Landrieu
This week on The Reading Life: Jerry Mitchell, founder of the Mississippi Center for Investigative Reporting, talks about his new book, “Race Against Time: A Reporter Reopens the Unsolved Cases of the Civil Rights Movement.” And co-chair Cheryl Landrieu previews the New Orleans Book Festival at Tulane University, coming up March 19-21....

The Reading Life with Lauren Groff and Amy Bonnaffons
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with fiction writer Lauren Groff, whose most recent books are “Fates and Furies” and the story collection, “Florida.” She will be the 35 th Zale-Kimmerling Writer in Residence at Newcomb College Institute in March. We’ll also hear from Amy Bonnaffons, whose new novel is “The Regrets.”...

The Reading Life with Lauren Groff and Amy Bonnaffons
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with fiction writer Lauren Groff, whose most recent books are “Fates and Furies” and the story collection, “Florida.” She will be the 35 th Zale-Kimmerling Writer in Residence at Newcomb College Institute in March. We’ll also hear from Amy Bonnaffons, whose new novel is “The Regrets.”...


The Reading Life with Jason Hardy
This week on The Reading Life: New Orleanian Jason Hardy, whose new book about his experiences as a probation and parole officer is “The Second Chance Club: Hope and Hardship after Prison.”...

The Reading Life with Michael Zapata
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with former New Orleanian, novelist Michael Zapata, whose impressive debut novel is “The Lost Book of Adana Moreau.”...

The Reading Life with Julie Kane
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with former state poet laureate Julie Kane, whose powerful new collection of work is “Mothers of Ireland.”...


The Reading Life with TR Johnson
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Tulane University professor TR Johnson, editor of the impressive new essay collection, “New Orleans: A Literary History,” and watch for the upcoming literary symposium on the book, Saturday, January 25, at Tulane....

The Reading Life with Cheryl Gerber
This week on The Reading Life: Photographer Cheryl Gerber talks about “Cherchez la Femme: New Orleans Women , " inspired by the 2017 Women's March. The book includes images that celebrate the achievements and style of New Orleans women, as well as essays by some of our finest writers....


The Reading Life with Robin Roberts and Leslie Wade
This week on The Reading Life: We roll into Carnival season with Robin Roberts and Leslie Wade, who, along with Frank de Caro, are the authors of “Downtown Mardi Gras: New Carnival Practices in Post-Katrina New Orleans.”...

The Reading Life: A Look Back on 2019
This week on The Reading Life: We look back on an extraordinary literary year in Louisiana, highlighting such great books as "We Cast a Shadow," by Maurice Carlos Ruffin; "Solitary," by Albert Woodfox with Leslie George; "The Yellow House," Sarah Broom's National Book Award winner; "All This Could Be Yours," by Jami Attenberg; "The Revisioners," by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton; and many others. We'll also look back at the best visitors, festivals, and we will honor the writers we lost this year....

The Reading Life with Florence Jumonville and Anne Babson
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with archivist Florence Jumonville, author of “Spreading the Gospel of Books: Essae M. Culver and the Genesis of Louisiana Parish Libraries,” and poet Anne Babson reads from her new collection, “Messiah.”...


The Reading Life with Josephine Sacabo, Dalt Wonk and Simon Blake
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Josephine Sacabo about her beautiful new photography book, “Structures of Reverie,” and Dalt Wonk and Simon Blake celebrate their collaboration in art and text for “Lonely Voyagers.” Plus, some musings on Edgar Allen Poe via music and an attempt to save a building that his lived in while in NYC....

The Reading Life with Jean Redmann and Greg Herren
This week on The Reading Life: New Orleans crime novelists Jean Redmann, author of “Not Dead Enough,” her tenth book in the Micky Knight series, and Greg Herren, author of “Royal Street Reveillon,” the eighth in his series featuring detective Scotty Bradley, perfect holiday reading from a writer who loves Christmas in New Orleans....

The Reading Life with Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton
This week on The Reading Life: Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton talk about their new book, “The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite Stories of Courage and Resilience.” Their appearance was presented by Octavia Books and recorded October 26 at St. Charles Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans....


The Reading Life with Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea
This week on The Reading Life: Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton talk about their new book, “The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite Stories of Courage and Resilience.” Their appearance was presented by Octavia Books and recorded October 26 at St. Charles Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans....

The Reading Life with Tina Freeman, Russell Lord and Robert Mann
This week on The Reading Life: Photographer Tina Freeman, whose new book is “Lamentations,” along with New Orleans Museum of Art curator of photography Russell Lord. And biographer Robert Mann talks about his book, “Becoming Ronald Reagan: The Rise of a Conservative Icon.”...

The Reading Life with Danielle Del Sol, Susan Langenhennig and Miki Pfeffer
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Danielle Del Sol and Susan Langenhennig of the Preservation Resource Center about their gorgeous new book, “Building on the Past: Saving Historic New Orleans.” We’ll also hear from Miki Pfeffer, editor of “A New Orleans Author in Mark Twain’s Court: Letters from Grace King’s New England Sojourns.” Megan Holt joins us to preview Words and Music: A Literary Feast in New Orleans , coming up November 21-24....


The Reading Life with Margaret Wilkerson Sexton and Daniel José Older
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans native Margaret Wilkerson Sexton, author of “The Revisioners,” a moving tale of lingering racism past and present, and a family of women healers who try to move beyond it. And Daniel José Older, author of “The Book of Lost Saints,” a dazzling novel about Cuban-Americans and the legacy of the revolution in Cuba....

The Reading Life with Jami Attenberg
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with novelist Jami Attenberg, whose new book is “All This Could Be Yours,” her first set in New Orleans. And we’ll have a preview of the Louisiana Book Festival, coming up November 2 in Baton Rouge....

The Reading Life with Jules Feiffer and Michael Pollan
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with authors who’ll be appearing at Improv NOLA: A Festival of Ideas. Jules Feiffer is known for his cartoons, novels, plays and screenplays, as well as his most recent graphic novel, “The Ghost Script.” He appears Saturday, November 9. And Michael Pollan, who has written so widely and beautifully about food and nature, talks about his most recent bestseller, “How to Change Your Mind.” He appears Friday, November 8. For more info, check out improvconferencenola.com...


The Reading Life with Lee Ledbetter
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans architect Lee Ledbetter, whose new book is “The Art of Place: Lee Ledbetter Architecture and Interiors.”...

The Reading Life with Robert Brantley and John Warner Smith
This week on The Reading Life: Photographer Robert Brantley, author of “Sacred Ground: Cemeteries of New Orleans.” And John Warner Smith, Louisiana’s new poet laureate and author of "Muhammad’s Mountain," "Spirits of the Gods," "A Mandala of Hands," and Soul Be a Witness," with a new collection, "Our Shut Eyes: New and Selected Poems on Race in America," due out later this year....

The Reading Life with Rachel Breunlin and Bruce “Sunpie” Barnes
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with University of New Orleans anthropologist Rachel Breunlin and musician Bruce “Sunpie” Barnes, co-authors of “Le Ker Creole (The Creole Heart): Creole Compositions and Stories from Louisiana,” the most recent book from the Neighborhood Story Project....


The Reading Life with Nevada Barr and Matt Sakakeeny
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with part-time New Orleanian Nevada Barr, whose new stand-alone thriller is “What Rose Forgot.” We’ll also hear from Matt Sakakeeny, co-editor of the provocative essay collection, “Remaking New Orleans: Beyond Exceptionalism to Authenticity.”...

The Reading Life with Nevada Barr and Matt Sakakeeny
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with part-time New Orleanian Nevada Barr, whose new stand-alone thriller is “What Rose Forgot.” We’ll also hear from Matt Sakakeeny, co-editor of the provocative essay collection, “Remaking New Orleans: Beyond Exceptionalism to Authenticity.”...

The Reading Life with Richard Sexton and Poppy Tooker
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with photographer Richard Sexton, whose new book is “Enigmatic Stream: Industrial Landscapes of the Lower Mississippi River,” which accompanies an exhibit that opens this week at the Historic New Orleans Collection. We’ll also hear from Poppy Tooker, host of "Louisiana Eats," who’s celebrating her new book, “Drag Queen Brunch.”...


The Reading Life with Richard Sexton and Poppy Tooker
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with photographer Richard Sexton, whose new book is “Enigmatic Stream: Industrial Landscapes of the Lower Mississippi River,” which accompanies an exhibit that opens this week at the Historic New Orleans Collection. We’ll also hear from Poppy Tooker, host of "Louisiana Eats," who’s celebrating her new book, “Drag Queen Brunch.”...

The Reading Life with J. Richard Gruber and Monique Truong
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with J. Richard (Rick) Gruber, director emeritus of the Ogden Museum of Southern Art and author of "Dusti Bongé: Art and Life: Biloxi, New Orleans, New York." We’ll also hear from novelist Monique Truong, whose new book, based on the life of Lafcadio Hearn, is “The Sweetest Fruits."...


The Reading Life with Sarah Broom
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans native Sarah Broom about her critically acclaimed new book, "The Yellow House: A Memoir," a tale of what draws us home and what makes us leave, and a chronicle of a sprawling, complicated family and the house in New Orleans East that binds them all together in shared memory. And Susan has a few words about the passing of Toni Morrison....

The Reading Life with Minrose Gwin and Kate Lacour
This week on the Reading Life: Susan talks with Minrose Gwin, whose most recent novel is “The Accidentals.” We’ll also hear from Kate Lacour, whose odd and beautiful new art book is “Vivisectionary: A Convocation of Biological Art.”...

The Reading Life with Rich Cohen and Nick Courage
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Rich Cohen about “The Last Pirate of New York: A Ghost Ship, A Killer, and the Birth of a Gangster Nation.” And New Orleans native Nick Courage takes us into the world of his new young adult novel, “Storm Blown.”...


The Reading Life with Laura Lippman and Lisa Howorth
This week on The Reading Life: Laura Lippman talks about her new, critically acclaimed novel, “The Lady in the Lake,” a thriller set in the many worlds of Baltimore, and Lisa Howorth, author of “The Summerlings."...

The Reading Life with Andrew Feldman
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans writer Andrew Feldman, whose new book is “Ernesto: The Untold Story of Hemingway in Revolutionary Cuba.” Feldman is the only North American scholar who’s been permitted to study in residence at Hemingway’s home, Finca Vigia....

The Reading Life with Colson Whitehead
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Colson Whitehead about his new novel, “The Nickel Boys.” Whitehead appears July 24 at Loyola University. We also experience a 'Book Moment' outside the Latter Memorial Library and hear another 'Book Song.'...


The Reading Life with Clive Wilson
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with Clive Wilson about “Time of My Life: A Jazz Journey from London to New Orleans.”...

The Reading Life with Kris Lackey and Agnes Gomillion
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with University of New Orleans emeritus professor of English Kris Lackey, author of “Greasy Bend,” the latest in the police procedural series featuring Hannah Bond and Bill Maytubby. We’ll also hear from Agnes Gomillion, author of the Afro-futurist dystopian novel, “The Record Keeper.”...

The Reading Life with Melody Golding and Josh Levin
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Melody Golding, whose beautiful new book is “Life Between the Levees: America’s Riverboat Pilots," and Josh Levin, author of “The Queen: The Forgotten Life Behind an American Myth,” a biography of Linda Taylor, who inspired the epithet "welfare queen."...


The Reading Life with Robert Azzarello and Robert Fieseler
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Southern University English professor Robert Azzarello about his new book, "Three Hundred Years of Decadence: New Orleans Literature and the Transatlantic World." We’ll also revisit Robert Fieseler’s “Tinderbox: The Upstairs Lounge Fire and the Rise of Gay Liberation.”...

The Reading Life with Daniel Brook and Kelly Harris
This week on The Reading Life: Daniel Brook, whose new book is “The Accident of Color: A Story of Race and Reconstruction," and poet Kelly Harris, the New Orleans literary outreach coordinator for Poets & Writers, Inc....

The Reading Life with Ron Swoboda and Derby Gisclair
This week on The Reading Life: We take you out to the ball game! Susan talks with Ron Swoboda, author of “Here’s the Catch: A Memoir of the Miracle Mets and More,” and Derby Gisclair, author of The Olympic Club of New Orleans: Epicenter of Professional Boxing, 1883-1897” and “Early Baseball in New Orleans.”...


The Reading life with Nancy Isenberg and Andrew Burstein
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Louisiana State University history professors Nancy Isenberg and Andrew Burstein, authors of "The Problem of Democracy: The Presidents Adams Confront the Cult of Personality.”...

The Reading Life with Tony Horwitz and Bryan Camp
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with bestselling author Tony Horwitz, author of “Spying on the South: An Odyssey Across the American Divide.” And fantasy novelist Bryan Camp previews his new Crescent City Novel, “Gather the Fortunes.”...

The Reading Life with Ani DiFranco and Mary Miller
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with singer / songwriter / poet / activist / New Orleanian Ani DiFranco, whose new memoir is “No Walls and the Recurring Dream.” And novelist Mary Miller talks about her new book, “Biloxi.”...


The Reading Life with Allison Levy
This week on The Reading Life: New Orleans native and art historian Allison Levy, whose new book is “House of Secrets: The Many Lives of a Florentine Palazzo.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Here in New Orleans: Casey Cep discusses and signs “Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee,” Sunday, May 12, at 2 p.m. at Garden District Book Shop. Judith Viorst discusses her new book “Nearing Ninety: And Other Comedies of Late Life,” Tuesday, May 14, from 7-9 at the Uptow...

The Reading Life with Nigel Hamilton and Casey Cep
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with biographer Nigel Hamilton about the final volume in his trilogy about FDR, “War and Peace: FDR’s Final Odyssey: D-Day to Yalta, 1943-1945.” We'll also hear from New Yorker writer Casey Cep, author of “Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee.”...

The Reading Life with Mark Yakich, John Biguenet and Rosary O’Neill
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Mark Yakich and John Biguenet, co-editors of “Interviews from the Edge: 50 Years of Conversations about Writing and Resistance,” an anthology of great work from The New Orleans Review. And Rosary O’Neill, co-author with Rory O’Neill Schmitt, talks about “New Orleans Voodoo: A Cultural History.”...


The Reading Life with Jessie Morgan-Owens and Brad Richard
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with Jessie Morgan-Owens, author of “Girl in Black and White: The Story of Mary Mildred Williams and the Abolition Movement," and poet Brad Richard talks about “Parasite Kingdom.”...

The Reading Life with Auseklis Ozols, John Kemp and Bill Lavender
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Auseklis Ozols, founder of the New Orleans Academy of Fine Arts, and writer John Kemp about their new book, “Auseklis Ozols: The Romantic Realism of an Artist and Teacher.” We’ll also hear from Bill Lavender about the upcoming New Orleans Poetry Festival and Small Press Book Fair, April 19-21....

The Reading Life with Nathaniel Rich
This week on The Reading Life: Journalist, novelist, and New Orleanian Nathaniel Rich talks about his new book, “Losing Earth: A Recent History.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Here in New Orleans: Lydia Fitzpatrick signs her novel “Lights All Night Long,” Monday, April 8, at 6 p.m. at Garden District Book Shop. The Women’s National Book Association of New Orleans meets Tuesday, April 9 at 5:30 at Howard Tilton Library, room 603, at Tulane University for a presentation by Jane Pinzino,...


The Reading Life with Douglas Brinkley
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with historian Douglas Brinkley about his new book, “American Moonshot: John F. Kennedy and the Great Space Race.”...

The Reading Life with Samantha Downing and Bryan Washington
This week, Susan talks with New Orleans writer Samantha Downing, author of the chilling new thriller, “My Lovely Wife,” the story of a married couple who spice up their love life with serial killing. And we hear from University of New Orleans Creative Writing Workshop graduate Bryan Washington, author of the brilliant new short story collection, “Lot.” Both will be in attendance at the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival March 27-31....

The Reading Life with Albert Woodfox
This week on The Reading Life: New Orleans native Albert Woodfox, author of “Solitary: My Journey of Transformation and Hope.” He is the last of the group known as the Angola 3 to be released from the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. This memoir describes his early life, as well as how he survived more than four decades in solitary confinement, more than any other incarcerated man in America....


The Reading Life with Dr. Gordon "Nick" Mueller
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with Dr. Gordon “Nick” Mueller, president and CEO emeritus of the National World War II Museum, about his new book, "Everything We Had: D-Day, 6.6.44."...

The Reading Life with Ken Wells and Scott Ellis
This week on The Reading Life: That great Louisiana chronicler Ken Wells talks about “Gumbo Life: Tales from the Roux Bayou.” And Scott Ellis explores one of New Orleans' most beloved neighborhoods in “The Faubourg Marigny of New Orleans: A History.”...

The Reading Life with Chris Castellani and Coleman Warner
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with novelist Chris Castellani, author of “Leading Men,” which takes its inspiration from the 15-year love affair between Tennessee Williams and Frank Merlo. We’ll also hear from Carnival historian Coleman Warner, who’s the author of “Tucks Makes Fifty: Legacies of an Irreverent, Joyful Carnival Krewe.”...


The Reading Life with Steve Luxenberg
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Steve Luxenberg, author of "Separate: The Story of Plessy v. Ferguson and America’s Journey from Slavery to Segregation."...

The Reading Life with Lisa Herrington and Brad Vogel
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Lisa Herrington, director of the Bayou Writer’s Club, which has more than 300 members. We’ll also hear from Brad Vogel of the Walt Whitman Initiative; he's coming to town as part of the Whitman Bicentennial to present a lecture on the poet's transformative time in Louisiana at the Louisiana Landmarks Society....

The Reading Life with Nancy Penrose
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Seattle-based writer and editor Nancy Penrose, the co-author, with Angela Gregory, of “A Dream and a Chisel: Louisiana Sculptor Angela Gregory in Paris, 1925-1928.”...


The Reading List with Maurice Carlos Ruffin
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans writer Maurice Carlos Ruffin, whose long-awaited new novel, “We Cast a Shadow," is on all the 2019 must-read lists....

The Reading Life with Daniel José Older
This week on The Reading Life: Award-winning author Daniel José Older, whose new book for middle grade readers is “Dactyl Hill Squad.” He is also the creator of the urban fantasy series, "Bone Street Rumba," as well as the "Shadowshaper" series for young adults....

The Reading Life with James Lee Burke
This week on The Reading Life: Susan Larson talks with bestselling author James Lee Burke, whose most recent Dave Robicheaux novel is “The New Iberia Blues.”...


The Reading Life with Rodger Kamenetz
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Rodger Kamenetz -- memoirist (“The Jew in the Lotus,” “Stalking Elijah,” and “Terra Infirma: My Mother’s Life in Mine”), dream practitioner (“The History of Last Night’s Dream") and poet (“The Lowercase Jew,” “To Die Next to You"). He has a new poetry collection, “Yonder." Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Here in New Orleans: Brandi Perry discusses and signs her novel, “Splintered,” Sunday, January 6, from 2-3:30 at Garden District Book Sho...

The Reading Life with David Benedetto and J.T. Blatty
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with David Benedetto of WRBH radio, host of The Writer’s Forum and Figure of Speech, and photographer J.T. Blatty, whose beautiful new book is “Fish Town: Down the Road to Louisiana's Vanishing Fishing Communities.”...


The Reading Life with Vanessa Schmid and Sally Asher
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with New Orleans Museum of Art curator Vanessa Schmid, about the new catalogue, “The Orleans Collection,” accompanying the exhibit currently on view at NOMA until January 27. We’ll also hear from Sally Asher about her very charming book, “The Mermaids of New Orleans.”...

The Reading Life with Winston Groom and James Nolan
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with novelist and historian Winston Groom, whose new book is “The Allies, Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin and the Unlikely Alliance That Won World War II.” We’ll hear about U.S. poet laureate Tracy K. Smith’s visit to Louisiana this week, as well as some poetry from James Nolan, whose new book is “Nasty Water: Collected New Orleans Poems.”...

The Reading Life with Alexis Braud
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with children's author/illustrator Alexis Braud of Cut-off Louisiana, also known as "the Lafourche Raconteuse." Alexis has four books out this season – “Bayou Ballet,” “Gumbo: A Magical Bayou Tale,” “One Two, Rougarou,” and “Mardi Gras in Mobile.”...


The Reading Life with Josephine Sacabo
This week on The Reading Life: Photographer Josephine Sacabo, whose two beautiful new books are “Lux Perpetua,” inspired by Sor Juana Inez de la Cruz, and “Beyond Thought,” inspired by Clarice Lispector. Sunday at noon, Tuesday at 1:30, and Wednesday at 8 on WWNO....

The Reading Life with Patricia Austin Becker and Randy Fertel
This week on The Reading Life: Patricia Austin Becker, author of “Cane River Bohemia: Cammie Henry and Her Circle at Melrose Plantation.” And Randy Fertel previews the upcoming conference, “ Improvisation: New Orleans Gift to the Modern World .” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Barbara Trevigne will discuss “The Creoles of Color” at 7 p.m., Monday, Nov. 19, at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon, Metairie. This event is part of the regularly scheduled meeting of the Genealog...

The Reading Life with Jason Berry
Hello, and welcome to The Reading Life, your weekly look at the Louisiana literary scene. I’m Susan Larson. Today, I’ll be talking with Jason Berry about his new book, “City of a Million Dreams: A History of New Orleans at Year 300.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Sally Asher and artist Melissa Vandiver sign “Mermaids of New Orleans, Sunday, November 11 , from noon to 3p.m. at the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas during the Weeki Wachee Mermaids performance. They will also appear Sunda...


The Reading Life with Sheryl St. Germain
This week on The Reading Life: Louisiana Writer Award winner, poet and essayist Sheryl St. Germain, who will receive her award at the Louisiana Book Festival, Saturday, November 10, at the State Capital in Baton Rouge. A New Orleans native, her most recent book is the poetry collection, "The Small Door of Your Death." Poet Anne Boyer , author of “The Romance of Happy Workers” and “Garments Against Women,” presents a reading Monday, November 5 at 7 p.m. at Freeman Auditorium at Tulane University. This year, ...

The Reading Life with Bryan Batt and Katy Danos
This week on The Reading Life: At the beach, at the beach! Bryan Batt and Katy Danos take a walk down memory lane with “Pontchartrain Beach: A Family Affair.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Brian Kilmeade discusses “Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans” with historian Ron Drez, Sunday, October 28, at 1 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center, 5342 St. Charles Ave. Tickets are available at Octavia Books. There will be a Not So Spooky Halloween costume party and story time for ages ...

The Reading Life with Michael Allen Zell and Lou Berney
This week on The Reading Life: Thrillers! Michael Allen Zell, author of “City Krystal Soulman,” the latest in his New Orleans-set Bobby Delery series, a nd Lou Berney, author of “November Road,” a thriller which takes off from the Kennedy assassination and imagines the Carlos Marcello empire. Sunday at noon, Tuesday at 1:30, and Wednesday at 8....


The Reading Life with Kiese Laymon
This week on The Reading Life: Kiese Laymon, author of “Heavy: An American Memoir.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Le Petit Theatre is partnering with Octavia Books for a Book Club, to be hosted by Christina Pellegrini and including special guests from each production. The first meeting is Sunday, October 14, at 1 p.m. at Le Petit Theatre; the book for discussion is “Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong," by Terry Teachout. Poet Melinda Palacio reads from “Bird Forgiveness,” Sunday, October...

The Reading Life with Ken Foster and Alison Pelegrin
This week on The Reading Life: Ken Foster talks about “City of Dogs: New York Dogs, Their Neighborhoods, and The People Who Love Them.” It's a great way to look at a city! Poet Alison Pelegrin reads from and discusses her most recent chapbook, “Our Lady of the Flood.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Poet Paul Benton reads from and signs “Luckland,” Sunday, October 7, at 3:30 p.m. at the Maple Leaf Bar. Dacre Stoker, great grandson of Bram Stoker, and his coauthor J. D. Barker, discuss a...

The Reading Life with Ellen Hart and Marcie Rendon
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with the 2018 winners of the Diana Pinckley Prizes for Crime Fiction. Ellen Hart, whose most recent book in the Jane Lawless series is “A Whisper of Bones,” is the winner for the Pinckley Prize for a Distinguished Body of Work. We’ll also hear from Marcie Rendon, winner of the Prize for Debut Novel, for her book “Murder on the Red River.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Journalist Martin Fletcher discusses and signs “The Promised Land: A Novel ...


The Reading Life with Kalamu ya Salaam and Tena Clark
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Kalamu ya Salaam, whose new book of collected writings from his long career is “Be About Beauty.” We’ll also hear from Tena Clark, songwriter and music producer and author of the new memoir, “Southern Discomfort.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Shane Bauer discusses and signs “American Prison: A Reporter’s Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment," Monday, Sept. 24, at 6 p.m. at Octavia Books. The Friends of the Jefferson Public...

The Reading Life with Justin Nystrom and Patty Friedmann
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Justin Nystrom, author of" Creole Italian: Sicilian Immigrants and the Shaping of New Orleans Food Culture.” Yummy! We’ll also hear from Patty Friedmann about her new short story collection, “Where Do They All Come From?” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Keith O’Brien discusses and signs “Fly Girls: How Five Daring Women Defied All Odds and Made Aviation History,” Monday, September 17, at 6 p.m. at Octavia Books. Registration for the Bayou ...

The Reading Life with Alex Beard and Josh Wheeler
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with Alex Beard, whose new children’s book is “The Lying King.” We’ll also hear from essayist Josh Wheeler, who’s the author of “Acid West.” Here’s what’s on tap in the literary life this week: Kim Vaz-Deville, author of “Walking Raddy: The Baby Dolls of New Orleans,” and Ladee Hubbard, author of “The Talented Ribkins,” will discuss their work, Thursday, Sept. 13, at 7 p.m. at the East Bank Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon, Metairie. Jonathan Schumacher, AKA “Mr....


The Reading Life With Bernice McFadden And Anne Babson
This week on The Reading Life: Susan talks with novelist Bernice McFadden, author of “Praise Song for the Butterflies,” a searing account of ritual servitude in West Africa. We’ll also hear from poet Anne Babson, whose new collection is “Polite Occasions.” **Lagniappe Audio**...