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September 30, 2020 @ 6:33 am

Ep 62 Mystical Reads of the Mountains with Ashley Blooms 9-30-20

I can always count on my husband, a huge sci-fi and fantasy reader to keep me up to date with some of the newest and most exciting authors in that genre. And when one of them is from our home state of Kentucky, you can be doubly sure Carrie and I will quickly ask for an interview.

Our guest this week, Ashley Blooms, grew up in rural Kentucky, was a John Grisham Writing Fellow at the University of Mississippi and worked for Tor.com, an online magazine that published a wide range of sci- fi/fantasy short stories, commentary, and pop culture. Her debut novel, Every Bone a Prayer, was published last month, has been recommended by NPR and Buzzfeed and has received praise from some of my favorite authors like Silas House and Alix Harrow. Ashley wants to make a space in Appalachian literature for more fantastical stories and not only the literary realism that is usually that trademark of the subgenre.

As a survivor of trauma and abuse in her own life, Ashley has created the 10-year-old protagonist, Misty, with unique sensory gifts that help explain what trauma feels like, how it changes a person, and how to move forward beyond it.

Ashley talks to us about why the Goosebumps series by R. L. Stine made her want to tell stories of her own, how she uses trigger warnings to give control back to the reader, and why she doesn’t categorize her book as magical realism even though it combines reality with fantastical elements.

Books Mentioned in this Episode:

1- Goosebumps series by R. L. Stine
2- What You are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte
3- Every Bone a Prayer by Ashley Blooms
4- The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
5- The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate
6- Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate
7- Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse
8- The True Story of Lyndie B. Hawkins by Gail Shepherd
9- Radical Spirits: Spiritualism and Women's Rights in 19th Century America by Anne Braude
10- Talking to the Dead: Kate and Maggie Fox and the Rise of Spiritualism by Barbara Weisberg
11- Brothers Sinister series by Courtney Milan
12- The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm; Translated by Jack Zipes
13- It's Great to Suck at Something: The Exceptional Benefits of Being Unexceptional by Karen Rinaldi

Podcast mentioned:
Hidden Brain (July 20, 2020) - "Culture Wars and the True Story of Lyndie B. Hawkins"

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September 23, 2020 @ 5:28 am

Ep 61: Bucherfreund Book Lover with Tabby Pawlitzki 9-22-20

Our guest this week, Tabby Pawlitzki, is helping us continue our series on Global Readers. Once a season, we talk with a book lover who grew up in another country but has made the United States their home. In seasons 1 and 2 we talked to readers from Somalia and Ireland. In Season 3 we are exploring Germany. Fortunately Instagram has made meeting book-loving people who come from all over the world much easier which is how we connected with Tabby. She joined us remotely from her home in Los Angeles.

Tabby moved from Germany to the United States as a teenager where she struggled a bit to understand American English versus the British English she had been taught in her home country, but she came to appreciate the American educational system which she found more inclusive. Tabby didn’t read much in her teen years but came to love literature again in her 20s by reading Jane Austen. Now she is a pastry chef and co-host of the Modern Life podcast where she combines her love of literature and cinema by discussing book to movie adaptations.

Tabby talks to us about why she thinks texts by German writers have the reputation of being very heavy, what destination in Germany you should definitely visit if you are a book lover, what is one of the strangest book to movie adaptations she has talked about on her podcast, and which of her favorite fairy tales hasn’t been Disney-fied.

Book mentioned in this episode:

1- The Little Witch by Orfried Preussler
2- Lottie and Lisa (The Parent Trap) by Erich Kastner
3- The Neverending Story by Michael Ende
4- The Sorrows of Young Werther by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
5- Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren
6- Fairytales by the Brothers Grimm - Star Thaler; Snow White and Rose Red
7- Books by Enid Blyton
8- Doctor Doolittle by Hugh Lofting
9- The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
10- Urmel by Max Kruse
11- Dune by Frank Herbert
12- Nothing Lasts Forever (Die Hard) by Roderick Thorp
13- Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
14- Narziss and Goldmund by Hermann Hesse
15- Death in Venice by Thomas Mann
16- The Metamorphisis/ The Trial by Franz Kafka
17- All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque
18- Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
19- Clothes Make The Man by Gottfried Keller
20- Far From The Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
21- Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
22- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
23- Little Women - The Screenplay by Greta Gerwig
24- The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald

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September 16, 2020 @ 6:00 am

Ep 60 Bibliophiles Meet Audio Files with Kris Keppeler 9-16-20

Did you know the use of audiobooks is on the rise? While print format and e-books are still the most popular, it’s only the audiobook format that has grown in popularity over the last few years. Audiobooks have some great qualities; they are easy to listen to while doing other tasks like commutes in the car and exercise; they are perfect for modern busy lives of multi-tasking; but they also can add a whole new layer of interest to a story if in the hands of a deft and talented narrator. At least ⅓ of the books Carrie and I talk about on the show are audiobooks and including them in your life is one of the best ways to increase your reading time.

Our guest today, Kris Keppeler, is an actor and audiobook narrator who has narrated over 50 books in her career. She uses her own studio located in her home in Washington State. She is also a consultant for other people who want to do what she does, including authors who want to narrate their own audiobooks.

Kris talks to us about how her opera background has helped her perform better as an audiobook narrator, why narrating books is a particularly fun job for an actor who always wants to play all the roles, and why she never auditions for books she doesn’t enjoy.

Books Mentioned in this Episode:

1- Secret Louisville: A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure by Kevin Gibson
2- Don't Ever Forget by Matthew Farrell
3- The Exiles by Christina Baker Kline

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September 8, 2020 @ 6:11 pm

Ep. 59 Big Stories in Small Spaces with Ellen Birkett Morris 9-9-20

Our guest this week, Ellen Birkett Morris, has an affection for small things. She says she was born prematurely and was terribly small at birth. She wonders if this is where her fascination with beautiful things coming in small packages began. Ellen is the author of a book of poetry and a new collection of short stories called Lost Girls. What readers may notice about her stories is that though they are small in length, they are powerful in meaning. Each story focuses on a passing moment in the lives of the girls and women she writes about. Ellen says she loves dipping in and out of a person’s story to find the small snippet of time that packs an emotional punch.

Lost Girls has been receiving critical praise from such places as the Southern Review of Books, Alabama Public Radio, and numerous book bloggers and reviewers including the Modern Mrs. Darcy blog.

Ellen talks to us about why reading her favorite books as a girl formed her idea that to be a writer you have to be a little like a spy, how the #MeToo movement helped shape the final form her stories collection would take, and why the superstore Target carrying her book left her a little gobsmacked.

Books Mentioned in this Episode:

1- Harriet The Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
2- James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
3- Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
4- Arabel's Raven by Joan Aiken
5- Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
6- A Visit From the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan
7- Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal by Mary Roach
8- Stiff: The Curious Lives of Cadavers by Mary Roach
9- Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach
10- Lake Life by David James Poissant
11- Tell The Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
12- The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
13- The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate
14- Pax by Sara Pennypacker
15- American Ghost: A Family's Haunted Past in the Desert Southwest by Hannah Nordhaus
16- Brooklyn by Colm Tolbein
17- Norah Webster by Colm Tolbein

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September 1, 2020 @ 8:04 pm

Ep. 58 Looking at Life Through Rosewater Glasses with Clare Wallace 9-2-20

This past weekend many people recognized Independent Bookstore Day, a day to be extra appreciative of their local bookstores and booksellers that give booklovers all the feels. Everyone loves a bookstore, don’t they?

Our guest today certainly does. When Clare Wallace visits a new place, she always looks for the closest used bookstore. This gave her the idea to open The Rosewater, aptly named after her favorite Kurt Vonnegut book, which she envisions as a comforting living room for everybody. Clare is the executive director of South Louisville Community Ministries, a nonprofit that provides emergency assistance for residents of South Louisville facing crisis, and she was looking for a visible way to do outreach in the neighborhood. The bookstore serves several purposes; to create a warm community space, to bring life to parts of the neighborhood that have seen hard times, to provide transitional employment for residents in crisis, and to offer a service that the neighbors want.

Clare grew up in a house filled with hundreds of books with a mother who worked for a publisher but her favorites were those that explored other worlds. After Clare left college, she literally went around the world working in international development and as a Peace Corps volunteer. When she settled in Louisville, she chose to land in the most diverse part of the city which is filled with a wide variety of different ethnicities and income levels; Clare works to bring people together in her adopted hometown.

Clare tells us how The Rosewater is pivoting from traditional retail sales to creative services like mystery book boxes delivered to your door due to Covid, why creating a comforting community space for the neighborhood is important to her, and how learning to deal with failure is a skill she learned abroad that helps her create new projects today.

Books Discussed in this Episode:

1- A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L'Engle
2- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
3- East of Eden by John Steinbeck
4- Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
5- Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
6- God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater by Kurt Vonnegut
7- The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
8- Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
9- The Lost Queen by Signe Pike
10- The Acts of King Arthur and His Noble Knights by John Steinbeck
11- Emergent Strategy by Adrienne Maree Brown
12- This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki and Jillian Tamaki
13- My Favorite Thing is Monsters by Emil Ferris
14- New Kid by Jerry Craft
15- The Watchman by Alan Moore
16- Saga by Brian K. Vaughan
17- American Gods by Neil Gaiman

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