Nonfiction

On this edition of ST, we speak with the well-regarded author, essayist, and cultural critic Chuck Klosterman, who has published a number of books and also writes the weekly "Ethicist" column for The New York Times Magazine. Klosterman's latest title, "I Wear the Black Hat: Grappling with Villains (Real and Imagined)," is just out in paperback; it's a far-reaching, often funny, and highly entertaining exploration of why we as a society are so attracted to -- yet also, of course, repelled by -- villains both fictional and nonfictional...as well as the very notion of villainy itself.

Illustration Credit: NPR

On this installment of ST, we welcome back Nancy Pearl, our longtime book reviewer. Nancy is a former librarian --- and former Tulsan --- who's also a bestselling author, editor, critic, and book advocate. She's also the former Executive Director of the Washington Center for the Book at the Seattle Public Library. She can be heard on NPR's Morning Edition, where she regularly offers good-reading tips, and her wide-ranging, well-researched recommendations have also been collected into the ongoing and highly popular "Book Lust" series of volumes.

On this edition of ST, we listen back to an interview from January of this year. At that time, we spoke with David R. Dow, a professor of law at the University of Houston Law Center and an internationally recognized figure in the fight against the death penalty. Dow discusses his latest book, a memoir entitled "Things I've Learned from Dying: A Book About Life." You can learn more about this interview --- and can hear all of it as a free, on-demand "stream" --- at this link.

(Note: This interview first aired earlier this year.) Family secrets. They're as common and as varied --- and as much a part of life --- as are families themselves. Such secrets, those we keep and those we discover, greatly influence who we are and how we live. And our guest is an expert in this regard: Jane Isay is a writer (and former book editor and publisher) whose previous works include "Walking on Eggshells," about parents and their adult children, and "Mom Still Likes You Best," about adult siblings.

On this installment of ST, we are pleased to speak once again with the author, critic, former librarian, and die-hard book-lover Nancy Pearl, who's well-known for her frequent appearances on NPR's Morning Edition, her tireless championing of old or out-of-print titles, and her "Book Lust" series of books about books. Nancy used to live in Tulsa, and she's been the book reviewer for this program for 20+ years --- indeed, while she usually joins us by phone from her home in Seattle, this time around, Nancy is with us in the studio.

We speak by phone today with Blake Bailey, who grew up in Oklahoma City, now teaches creative writing in Virginia, and is the author of three highly regarded literary biographies (of Richard Yates, John Cheever, and Charles Jackson).

On today's ST, we offer a thoroughly gosh-wow-how-cool discussion with Stephen Voltz. Along with Fritz Grobe, Voltz is co-founder of the EepyBird Laboratory in Maine --- please see website here --- which is well-known for its experiments with ping pong balls, sticky notes, balloons, soda cans, Ivory soap, and so forth, with many of these experiments becoming viral videos at YouTube and other sites.

Our guest is David R. Dow, a professor of law at the University of Houston Law Center and an internationally recognized figure in the fight against the death penalty. Dow is also the founder and director of the Texas Innocence Network; he has represented more than 100 death row inmates in their state and federal appeals.

(Note: This program first aired last year.) On our show today, we speak by phone with David Skinner, an editor and writer whose work has appeared in The Weekly Standard, The Wall Street Journal, The New Atlantis, Slate, The Washington Times, and other publications.

Family secrets. They're as common and as varied --- and as much a part of life --- as are families themselves. Such secrets, those that we keep and those that we discover, greatly influence who we are and how we live. And our guest is an expert in this regard: Jane Isay is a writer (and former book editor and publisher) whose previous works include "Walking on Eggshells," about parents and their adult children, and "Mom Still Likes You Best," about adult siblings.

On this edition of StudioTulsa, our old pal (and longtime book reviewer, and former Tulsan) Nancy "America's Librarian" Pearl returns with --- just in time for the holidays --- another list of outstanding literary recommendations. Whether you're keen on ficton or non-fiction, a YA novel or a thriller, a work of history or one of satire, Nancy has just the book you're looking for. . . . Here's the rundown of titles/authors that she shares with us on today's program:

Scott Anderson, "Lawrence in Arabia"

Today on StudioTulsa, we're joined by our friend and colleague Richard Higgs, a local writer who's well-known as one of the co-hosts of Folk Salad, the long-running folk & blues & Red Dirt (& alt-country & Americana & singer-songwriter & what-not) radio show heard Sunday evenings at 7pm here on Public Radio 89.5. Higgs has a new book out, "Then There Is No Mountain: An American Memoir," which he discusses with us today.

Tomorrow, Saturday the 19th, the annual Nimrod Conference for Readers and Writers will happen here on the TU campus; it's a day-long writing-and-editing symposium presented by Nimrod International Journal, running from 9:30am to 4:30pm and offering workshops in fiction, poetry, memoir, YA fantasy, writing queries and synopses for literary agents, and more.

(Please note: This interview originally aired earlier this year.) Today on ST, we speak with the bestselling author of "Just My Type" and other works of wide-ranging, culturally- or historically-driven nonfiction, Simon Garfield. His new book, "On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks," is just out. It's a detailed yet accessible survey of the age-old relationship between man and map, if you will, a study of why we as human beings are (and always have been) so fixated upon mapping things.

Today on ST, we speak with the bestselling author of "Just My Type" and other works of wide-ranging, culturally- or historically-driven nonfiction, Simon Garfield. His new book, "On the Map: A Mind-Expanding Exploration of the Way the World Looks," is just out. It's a detailed yet accessible survey of the age-old relationship between man and map, if you will, a study of why we as human beings are (and always have been) so fixated upon mapping things. Cartography, after all, seems to be as defining a characteristic for us (as a species) as, say, language or creativity or play.

On today's program, which first aired last fall, we hear from the longtime New Yorker Magazine writer and bestselling author Ian Frazier, whose latest book (now in paperback) is "Travels in Siberia," which the San Francisco Chronicle has called "a masterpiece of nonfiction writing --- tragic, bizarre, and funny." Further, as one critic of this book has noted in The New York Times Book Review: "['Travels in Siberia' is] an uproarious, sometimes dark yarn filled with dubious meals, broken-down vehicles, abandoned slave-labor camps, and ubiquitous statues of Lenin --- 'On the Road' meets 'The

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