Legendary publisher and editor Robert Gottlieb talks with Laurie about his new memoir Avid Reader; reflects on his glory days at Knopf and The New Yorker; and expresses confidence about the state of writing today. Tracy Tynan offers PG Wodehouse as comfort reading for these treacherous times. Tom and Laurie launch a new poetry feature with a reading of WB Yeats The Second Coming.
Laurie is joined by LARB legal editor Don Franzen for a discussion on the two competing California Ballot Initiatives related to the Death Penalty: Proposition 62 that calls for an end to the Death Penalty in the state; and Proposition 66, a confusing pro-Death Penalty measure, that calls for speeding up executions. To provide clarity, Laurie and Don are joined by Stephen Rohde, from Death Penalty Focus, and the legendary former District Attorney of Los Angeles County, Gil Garcetti.
Despina Stratigakos, author of Hitler at Home, joins Laurie and co-host Boris Drayluk for a wide-ranging discussion about how tasteful interior design operated as propaganda in the Third Reich; the powerful woman who was at the heart of that effort, Gerdy Troost; and the lessons we should draw from this tale for our own celebrity-saturated politics. Also, Nicholson Baker returns to explain his mysterious relationship to Vladimir Nabokov's Speak, Memory.
Costume designer and author Tracy Tynan joins Tom and Laurie to talk about her new memoir Wear and Tear: The Threads of My Life. The daughter of a legendary couple from Swinging London in the 60s - theater critic Kenneth Tynan and actress-turned-author Elaine Dundy - Tynan spins tales of a daringly dysfunctional, but beautifully dressed, nuclear family. Also, LARB editor Evan Kindley drops by to recommend a book by (appropriately) the British developmental psychoanalyst DW Winnicott.
Author Nicholson Baker joins Tom, Laurie, and Evan Kindley to discuss his new book Substitute: Going to School with a Thousand Kids which tells the story of Baker's time as a substitute teacher in a Maine public school system. This opens up into a fascinating discussion of pedagogy in light of the everyday realities of contemporary American public schooling.
Ron Arias, author of the acclaimed novel The Road to Tamazunchale, joins Tom and Laurie to discuss his new collection The Wetback and Other Stories; as well as his career in journalism and his encounters with Jorge Luis Borges and Ernest Hemingway. Also, Jannice Littlejohn returns to recommend Monica Coleman's Bipolar Faith: A Black Woman's Journey with Depression and Faith.
This week Tom and Laurie talk with Lesley MM Blume about her new book Everybody Behaves Badly: The True Story Behind Hemingway’s Masterpiece The Sun Also Rises. Laura Albert is back on the show after last week's brilliant interview to recommend everyone read Annie Proulx’s Barkskins. Plus, Janet Fitch reads from her novel Paint it Black.
Hosts Laurie Winer and Tom Lutz talk with Laura Albert on the eve of the cinematic debut of the documentary film about her, "Author: The JT Leroy Story." The conversation covers the story of the Albert's bestselling books, which she wrote under the pseudonym - or rather, through her avatar - "JT Leroy." It's one of the most fascinating, and controversial, tales in recent American letters.
LARB's Senior Editors Janice Littlejohn and Evan Kindley join Tom and Laurie for a pair of wide ranging conversations. First, Janice discusses the documentary film she is producing on women horn players; and then two recent articles she wrote: one about representation of people of color in Hollywood films (with a focus on a project in development about the Persian poet Rumi with Leonardo DiCaprio slated to play the muslim scholar); the second about the relationship of people of mixed race to Black American political and cultural discourse. Then, Evan Kindley discusses his book, Questionairre, a delightful study of the history of the form from its origins to its most popular contemporary incarnation - as irresistible click bait.
Political Journalist Walter Shapiro joins Seth and Tom to discuss his new book Hustling Hitler: The Jewish Vaudvillian Who Fooled thew Fuhrer; it's about Walter's Great Uncle Freeman Bernstein - one of the legendary grifters of his time. Then David Ulin discusses the satirical novel he co-authored with Paul Kolsby in the 1990s, Ear to the Ground. Recently published in book form for the first time; Ear to the Ground originally appeared in weekly serial installments in the LA Reader.
Author and Slate Editor Jessica Winter joins Seth and Laurie to discuss her novel Brake In Case Of Emergency; and all the delicious subjects that arise from writing a scathing, yet loving, satire of an all women's workplace. Plus, Jessica's reflections on Election 2016.
Laurie, Seth, and Tom talk with LA Times reporter Jill leovy about her fascinating and best-selling book on a murder case in South Los Angeles, Ghettocide. The conversation goes in-depth into some of the hottest political issues of 2016: race, policing, and our society's unequal distribution of resources. Also, Seth and Laurie address another source of political trauma, Donald Trump, in the wake of both major party conventions
The gang talks, DNC 2016, Bernie Bros, and Maureen Dowd of the New York Times with fellow Times columnist Meghan Daum in the studio.
This week's episode features Margaret Wappler who joins the show to talk about her new novel 'Neon Green.' Plus, your hosts discuss the Hulk Hogan lawsuit against Gawker and Peter Thiel's role in it.
This week, Seth, Laurie and Tom talk about one of Seth’s favorite topics: bullshit. The conversation ranges across a few recent newsmakers, including Jared Kushner, son-in-law of Donald Trump and owner of the New York Observer; Gay Talese, acclaimed journalist and author of the debatably non-fiction book 'The Voyeur’s Motel'; and Jonah Lehrer, former writer for The New Yorker at the center of several plagiarism scandals.
Author and Comic Lauren Weedman joins Seth, Laurie, and Tom to discuss her new book, Miss Fortune; then author David Ulin looks at Donald Trump through the lens of American Literature
The show opens with Seth and Laurie discussing this year's Tony Awards, then author Julia Claiborne Johnson recommends "To the One I Love the Best;" our own Tom Lutz talks about his newly published book "Drinking Mare's Milk on the Roof of the World," Norman Klein comes back to recommend his favorite meat and condiment, and Seth, Laurie, and Tom choose their favorite literary fathers in honor of their Day.
Tom and Seth talk about Tom's travel in Georgia, Armenia, and environs; Laurie, Tom, and Seth interview Michelle Latiolais about her new book of fiction, She. Ryan Gattis recommends Jill Leovy's Ghettoside.
Jack Miles discusses the first ever Norton Anthology of Religion, which he compiled; and Ryan Gattis returns to recommend another masterful historical novel about Los Angeles, Nina Revoyr's Southland.
Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney joins Seth, Laurie, and Tom to discuss her best-selling novel The Nest; and screenwriter John Romano praises George Eliot's masterful Daniel Deronda
This week’s show features an interview with Ryan Gattis, author of All Involved, a novel set during the 1992 LA Riots, focusing on a sliver of Los Angeles almost completely ignored by the media at the time and told through seventeen interconnected first-person narratives. Gattis, who is a member of the LA street art crew UGLARworks, describes how he spent over two years researching the novel, interviewing a wide range of people that had lived through the riots, from nurses, firefighters, and police officers to gang members and graffiti artists.
On this week’s show we talk with BLDGBLOG writer Geoff Manaugh about his new book, A Burglar's Guide to the City, which offers a fascinating look at architecture and design principles from the point of view of burglars and the authorities looking to catch them. Bruce Wagner reads a poem by William Butler Yeats, and Kate Gale and John Brantingham of Red Hen Press join to talk about their new collection of short fiction LA Fiction Anthology.
This episode is sponsored by Otherppl with Brad Listi, a weekly podcast featuring in-depth interviews with today’s leading authors, poets, and screenwriters. Electric Literature calls it “one of the best podcasts on the web,” and Buzzfeed calls it “the perfect way to get the story behind your stories.” There are now more than 400 episodes available — and counting. Hear conversations with writers like George Saunders, Cheryl Strayed, Roxane Gay, Leslie Jamison, Hanya Yanagihara, Jonathan Lethem, Sheila Heti, Eileen Myles, and many more. Otherppl with Brad Listi has its own official app, available for free at your favorite app store. The show is also available for free at iTunes and Stitcher, and on the web at otherppl.com.