Poured Over

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Description

Poured Over is a show for readers who pore over details, obsess over sentences and ideas and stories and characters; readers who ask a lot of questions, just like Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer, a career bookseller who’s always reading. Follow us here for surprising riffs, candid conversations, a few laughs, and lots of great book recommendations from big name authors and authors on their way to being big names. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Episode Date
Alison L. Strayer and Dan Simon on Nobel Laureate Annie Ernaux
41:43

“It is an amazing, amazing translation experience….But it took a long time to get to the point where the language started moving because you have to start out sort of in English laying down a rock, rocks, and then a rock and a rock, building a wall. It doesn't move, and it's just right, right next to the ground. And because you can't obviously start translating in full sentences really. My whole idea was this to just stick absolutely close to the earth of her syntax and build up. And you build and you build and you build and finally something starts to move. And then you can gain some of the movement that you — but in English — that you have sensed and been thrilled by in reading the French.”

Alison L. Strayer has been reading Nobel Laureate Annie Ernaux’s books for 30 years, and has translated the last few, including The Years, nominated for the International Man Booker Prize. Alison and Dan Simon of Seven Stories Press, Annie’s longtime American publisher, join us on the show to talk about working with the iconic French author, the joys of literature in translation, capturing Ernaux’s voice and sensibilities and the emotional truth of her genre-bending prose for English-speaking audiences and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

The Years by Annie Ernaux, translated by Alison L. Strayer

A Girl’s Story by Annie Ernaux, translated by Alison L. Strayer

Getting Lost by Annie Ernaux, translated by Alison L. Strayer

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Dec 08, 2022
Jane Smiley on A DANGEROUS BUSINESS
52:56

“One of my favorite places to take a little walk around is the public cemetery, which is on a little hill that overlooks the bay. And you know, if you ever wanted to be buried somewhere, that's the place to be buried. And right across the street from it, and a little ways down the road is this beautiful canyon you can walk up. The trees are covered with Spanish moss, and there's fog. And so it's perfect place — if you believe in ghosts — to see one.”  

A murder mystery set in 1850’s Monterey, California, Jane Smiley’s latest novel, A Dangerous Business, is a bit of a departure for the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer. She joins us on the show to take readers behind the scenes of her new book (as well as some of her earlier work) and talk about the books and writers who’ve inspired her along the way (including what she learned from reading Charles Dickens), what she loves about novels and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Jamie.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

A Dangerous Business by Jane Smiley

Perestroika in Paris by Jane Smiley

Moo by Jane Smiley

A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley

The Hundred Years Trilogy (Some Luck, Early Warning and Golden Age) by Jane Smiley

The Greenlanders by Jane Smiley

Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Novel by Jane Smiley

The Transylvanian Trilogy by Miklos Banffy (Vol 1) and (Vol 2 + 3)

The Kellys and the O’Kelleys: Or, Landlords and Tenants by Anthony Trollope

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

The Collective by Alison Gaylin

News of the World by Paulette Jiles

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Dec 06, 2022
Lauren Graham on HAVE I TOLD YOU THIS ALREADY?: STORIES I DON'T WANT TO FORGET TO REMEMBER
43:11

“Storytelling can just be you understanding yourself, but it turns into something else when it's a shared piece — so much of anything in life is practice, and just pure showing up…I think that's just important to remember, you're not always going to feel inspired or inspirational, or you're not going to feel you've done your best. And you just have to ignore that voice and keep going.” Lauren Graham (Talking as Fast as I Can) is an absolute delight on the page and on the screen (Gilmore Girls and Parenthood) and she joins us on the show to talk about her new book, Have I Told You This Already?: Stories I Don't Want to Forget to Remember, along with Old Lady Jackson, marmalade, rereading and rewatching, her writing process, what’s next for her and more with guest host Marie Cummings. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Have I Told You This Already?: Stories I Don't Want to Forget to Remember by Lauren Graham

Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

One Italian Summer by Rebecca Searle

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Marie Cummings and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Dec 01, 2022
Nick Hornby on DICKENS AND PRINCE: A PARTICULAR KIND OF GENIUS
59:57

“I loved it more than everybody. And afterwards, I thought for the first time, whatever I do, I've got to get as close to that as I can. Not the noise or the music or being a rock star, but the creativity of it and the energy of it and the way that you affect people, and I knew that my life wouldn't be the same. And it's kind of always been like that.”

Nick Hornby (High Fidelity, Fever Pitch, About a Boy and Juliet, Naked, among others) returns with Dickens and Prince: A Particular Kind of Genius — a very funny, very "Nick Hornby" look at music, books, fandom and creativity. Nick joins us on the show to talk about how a newly issued deluxe edition of Sign ‘O’ the Times jumpstarted his latest book, why perfectionism is terrible, how an early Springsteen show put Hornby on his path, why Dickens shouldn’t be taught before the age of 18, why test screenings are a good thing and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc, Jamie and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Dickens and Prince: A Particular Kind of Genius by Nick Hornby

High Fidelity by Nick Hornby

David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver

Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

 

Featured Album (Episode):

Sign ‘O’ the Times [Super Deluxe] by Prince

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Bowie’s Bookshelf by John O’Connell

The Lyrics by Paul McCartney

The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays with occasional Saturdays.

Nov 29, 2022
Matthew Quick on WE ARE THE LIGHT
52:44

“I grew up in a blue-collar neighborhood. And you know, nobody was expected to be a novelist — that was not a thing, that was not a choice in my neighborhood. And when I made that choice, it was very strange to people. And it was a really hard thing for people to accept and my father and my grandfather did not understand that at all. And they discouraged me. But then once I succeeded, they really claimed that, and my grandfather would tell everyone…”

Matthew Quick (The Silver Linings Playbook) joins guest host Allyson Gavaletz to talk about his new novel, We Are the Light, along with breaking cycles, writer’s block, connecting with people, collective trauma, running, Jungian analysis, the books and writers he loves to teach, his literary influences, what’s next for him and more. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

We Are the Light by Matthew Quick

The Ferryman by Justin Cronin

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

A Man Called Ove by Fredrick Backman

The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Allyson Gavaletz and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 26, 2022
Adam Hochschild on AMERICAN MIDNIGHT: THE GREAT WAR, A VIOLENT PEACE, AND DEMOCRACY'S FORGOTTEN CRISIS
49:06

"One of the ways you can get into my cast of characters is by leaving a very detailed written record. Because that's what we historians have to work from, you're not allowed to make stuff up like a novelist can… And, of course, it skews, to some extent, the way history is written. Because the rich leave more records than the poor, men leave more records than women, white people leave more records than Black and so on.”

Adam Hochschild (King Leopold’s Ghost) joins us on the show to talk about his latest book, American MidnightThe Great War, a Violent Peace, and Democracy’s Forgotten Crisis. Hochschild connects the dots between our America and an all-too familiar America of a century ago, riffing on power and deception, Woodrow Wilson’s legacy, undercover agents, labor organizers, the Espionage Act of 1917, what’s next for him and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured Books:

American Midnight: The Great War, a Violent Peace, and Democracy’s Forgotten Crisis by Adam Hochschild

Rebel Cinderella by Adam Hochschild

King Leopold’s Ghost by Adam Hochschild

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk by Ben Fountain

The Winter Soldier by Daniel Mason

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 24, 2022
Erika T. Wurth on WHITE HORSE
44:56

"When I was a kid, I was super, super geeky, it was so nerdy. And all I read was dragon books, or ghost books, or elf books…someone tried to give me a copy of To Kill a Mockingbird, and I just remember thinking, Where are the dragons? And when I went to do my doctorate in creative writing and literature —especially at the time, and even now, they kind of steamroll that out of you, they sort of train you to think that there are two things called literary and genre… if you're a good writer, and smart, you write literary (later on, I came to understand, that just meant realism). And that literary was a series of conventions that had nothing to do with genre. And then I just missed — I really desperately missed [genre] — especially horror, because it's something that's able to marry the darker, more realistic, gritty parts of fiction that I love so much, with kind of the nerdy stuff like ghosts and monsters."

An urban Native of Apache/Chickasaw/Cherokee descent, writer Erika T. Wurth joins guest host Allyson Gavaletz to take readers behind the scenes of her fabulous new novel, White Horse, and to talk about her own family’s story, clairvoyance, nostalgia, heavy metal music, finding comfort in reading horror, her favorite contemporary horror writers and much more. We end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

White Horse by Erika T. Wurth

Thrill Me: Essays on Fiction by Benjamin Percy

Damn Fine Story: Mastering the Tools of a Powerful Narrative by Chuck Wendig

Mastering Suspense, Structure and Plot by Jane K. Cleland

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

My Heart is a Chainsaw by Stephen Graham Jones

Tender is the Flesh by Agustina Bazterrica

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Allyson Gavaletz and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 22, 2022
Sue Lynn Tan on HEART OF THE SUN WARRIOR
48:06

“They're rooted in our culture as well. And because of all that, I think they feel a little bit more real, even though they are fantastical magical realms…and there's also this timeless quality in a way as well….I do think also there is a lot of room for imagination to grow in these stories.” Sue Lynn Tan joins guest host Kat Sarfas on the show to take readers behind the scenes of her latest epic, Heart of the Sun Warrior, the stunning sequel to Daughter of the Moon Goddess, from world-building, favorite characters, resilience, to celebrating the mid-Autumn festival, what’s next and much more. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

Featured Books (Episode)
Daughter of the Moon Goddess by Sue Lynn Tan
Heart of the Sun Warrior by Sue Lynn Tan

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)
Beneath the Moon by Yoshi Yoshitani
The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea by Axie Oh

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 19, 2022
Jerry Saltz on ART IS LIFE
54:20

“We are writing our stories to the world, as opposed to just reading the old stories. And somehow, some way accidentally, intentionally, desperately on the case and caught off guard, Art is Life captures this huge sweep and ends about where we are now in the present—which is an epic place as well.”

Pulitzer Prize-winning critic Jerry Saltz (How to Be An Artist) is consistently one of the smartest, freshest and liveliest voices in art criticism and he joins us on the show to talk about his new book, Art is Life, and his finger-on-the-pulse perspectives of the art world, including: how art history is being rewritten, the problematic intricacies of the art market, the absolute need for museums and galleries to adapt to the current social climate, the evolution of art critique in social media and much more with guest host Allie Ludlow. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Jamie.

 

Featured Book (episode):

Art is Life by Jerry Saltz

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

The Secret Lives of Color by Karissa St. Clair

Ninth Street Women by Mary Gabriel

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Allie Ludlow and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 17, 2022
Patti Smith on A BOOK OF DAYS
01:06:24

“I'm really driven by poetry. I'm really driven by language. But also, I'm driven by a desire to connect with the people. So I could have been a teacher. I could have been a politician. I could have been anyone that communicates with people verbally because I liked that. I wound up a performer, but it was all rooted in poetry. And as a book person, I have loved books since I was a toddler.”

Writer, performer, National Book Award Winner (Just Kids), Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres, and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee Patti Smith joins us on the show to take us behind the scenes of A Book of Days, connecting with readers, taking the pictures she wants to take (and leaving the rest to others), her love of mathematics, paying attention to marginalia in books, Arianna Grande and Harry Styles, Keanu Reeves (and the John Wick movies), dancing to pop music and much more with Poured Over’s host Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and guest bookseller, Grace.

Featured Books (Episode)
:
A Book of Days by Patti Smith

Woolgathering by Patti Smith

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

2666 by Roberto Bolaño

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

This Searing Light, The Sun, and Everything Else by Jon Savage

Morning Glory on the Vine by Joni Mitchell

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 15, 2022
Kevin Wilson on NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO PANIC
52:21

“It's hard to be funny, you can't really plan on — you don't know what will land with people…. absurdity just exists constantly in the world that we live in. And to my mind, the humor comes from the way different people traverse absurdity, how they try to normalize it, or how they freak out because they want to build their own weirdness on top of it. And so for me, that's where I get a lot of the humor, just the different ways that people respond to the absurdity around them.”

Kevin Wilson (Nothing to See Here and The Family Fang) is one of our very favorite writers and he joins us on the show to riff on Now is Not the Time to Panic, his new novel about family, friendship and art, plus rural spaces, pre-internet life, rewriting, balancing fatherhood and career, his literary influences and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff Book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Now is Not the Time to Panic by Kevin Wilson

Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson

The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart

Looking for Alaska by John Green

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 12, 2022
Rabia Chaudry on FATTY FATTY BOOM BOOM: A MEMOIR OF FOOD, FAT, AND FAMILY
49:47

“I had never known what it was like to feel full. And I know that sounds like really odd, but because most people can — I would be with friends and a friend would stop eating. She's like, I'm full. And I'm like, What's wrong with me that I don't know what it feels like to feel full? And I don't know what the answer to that question is, to this day. I don't know if it's a psychological or emotional thing, or if it was an actual physical thing that like my tummy was bottomless. But this feeling of fullness makes me feel like, it's my body, like I'm actually finally having a conversation with my body.” Attorney, advocate, podcaster, and bestselling author (Adnan’s Story) Rabia Chaudry shares her charming, often funny — and always deeply personal story — of her relationship with food in her new memoir with recipes, Fatty Fatty Boom Boom: A Memoir of Food, Fat, and Family. She joins us on the show to talk about food and family, body image, changing behaviors and a solution that works for her, finding universal truths in a story’s details, her newest podcast (Rabia & Ellen Solve the Case), why pulao beats biriyani and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Fatty Fatty Boom Boom: A Memoir of Food, Fat, and Family by Rabia Chaudry

Adnan’s Story by Rabia Chaudry

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Salt Fat Acid Heat by Samrin Nostrat

Brain on Fire by Susanna Cahalan

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 10, 2022
Madeline Miller on GALATEA
51:17

“I always feel like as a reader, I always want to go in ready to be changed, ready to be transformed by what I'm reading, ready to be expanded. And that's what I love about books, they work on you kind of like magic.” Madeline Miller’s novels, The Song of Achilles and Circe, keep working their magic on readers everywhere. She joins us on the show to take listeners behind the scenes of her new novella, Galatea, in a very fun conversation that covers voice, subverting stories, Troilus & Cressida, the books and writers Madeline loves (and some she’s added to her TBR pile), and plenty of shared fangirling over Emily Wilson’s translation of The Odyssey with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc, Kelly and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Galatea by Madeline Miller

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

Circe by Madeline Miller

The Odyssey translated by Emily Wilson

The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka

The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin

The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Mohsin Hamid

Babel by R.F. Kuang

Trust by Hernan Diaz

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

The Silence of the Girls by Park Barker

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 08, 2022
Anand Giridharadas on THE PERSUADERS: AT THE FRONT LINES OF THE FIGHT FOR HEARTS, MINDS, AND DEMOCRACY
39:06

“More people than we realize are works in progress, are trying to figure out a way to think about the world… As Beyoncé said in her new album, they're contradicted. They're internally contradicted more than we think. We can make the kind of change we seek, we deserve in this country, if we allow the idea that more of us are contradicted, more of us need help sorting through the world, and we have the patience — we can muster that kind of patience and love to help people sort through how they see the world.” Bestselling author Anand Giridharadas (Winners Take All) joins us on the show to talk about his urgent new book, The Persuaders: At the Front Lines of the Fight for Hearts, Minds, and Democracy, psychological transitions and cognitive dissonance, not giving up and bringing people into community, doing the work that works for you, how writing this book changed him and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

The Persuaders by Anand Giridharadas

Winners Take All by Anand Giridharadas

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 05, 2022
N.K. Jemisin on THE WORLD WE MAKE
44:00

“…The idea just kind of spun itself into existence in my head, the world started to form almost immediately — when my creative brain kind of immediately kicks in like that, I've learned to listen to it, because usually, that means something, something good is trying to come out.” N.K. Jemisin — winner of three consecutive Hugo Awards for Best Novel (each of the Broken Earth books) and now a fourth for Best Graphic Story or Comic (Far Sector), and MacArthur “genius grant” recipient — is one of our favorite writers, and we’ll follow her anywhere. She joins us on the show to talk about closing out her Great Cities duology with The World We Make, adapting the Broken Earth series for the screen, the challenges of writing about a city massively in flux, NY pizza, Ozymandias the cat, her literary inspirations, what’s she’s reading and more with guest host Kat Sarfas. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

The World We Make by N.K. Jemisin

Monstress by Sana Takeda and Marjorie Liu

Witch King by Martha Wells

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jean Anders

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 03, 2022
Louise Kennedy on TRESPASSES
49:40

“…It was at the end of an exhibition called The Art of The Troubles. And that had been a little controversial (as these things very often are in post-conflict societies). Some people felt it had gone too far. Other people felt that it hadn't gone far enough. It just made me think about how maybe art could be used to say things that are really unsayable in a place where people are obsessed with language and obsessed with identity and where languages are so problematic.”

Louise Kennedy joins us on the show to talk about her US debut, Trespasses, a story about love, loss and identity that’s so unforgettable, it’s our newest Discover pick. Listen in as Louise riffs on the layers of her debut: coming of age, class, searching for safety, rewriting matinee idols, transgression, mothers and daughters, her literary influences and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book reviews from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Book (Episode):

Trespasses by Louise Kennedy

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Small Things Like These by Claire Keegan

Wolf Den by Elodi Harper

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Nov 01, 2022
Marjorie Liu on THE NIGHT EATERS: SHE EATS THE NIGHT
47:40

"We don't know our parents, I mean, we think we do; you know, all of us have a practice of dealing with contained worlds. And that practice begins with our families, it begins with our parents, because these are individuals that we don't fully understand, but we are completely dependent on for our survival... And so it creates this really interesting situation where, you know, we take them for granted in a certain way, we think we understand them, but we don't. I want to see if I could get that crossed in some small way, by showing these alternate realities…" Marjorie Liu joins Poured Over guest host Kat Sarfas to talk about her latest graphic novel, The Night Eaters: She Eats the Night, the first volume in a new series, along with their shared love of comics and graphic novels, how the story evolved for Marjorie, family, inherited trauma, the importance of play, sibling relationships, Dungeons & Dragons, creepy dolls and much more.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

The Night Eaters: She Eats the Night by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda

The Monstress series of graphic novels by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda

Ducks: Two Years in the Oil Sands by Kate Beaton

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Neil Gaiman’s Snow, Glass, Apples by Colleen Doran and Neil Gaiman

Bunny by Mona Awad

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 29, 2022
Jodi Picoult and Jennifer Finney Boylan on MAD HONEY
44:10

“I was always writing, and I think it goes back to that Charlotte's Web thing when I had that experience of something taking me out of this world. It was mysterious, and transcendent, and glorious. And I'm still searching for that every day — if I can find a story that will do that to me and just kind of mystify me and leave me a slightly different person than I was before.” Jennifer Finney Boylan and Jodi Picoult joined us on stage at our flagship store on Union Square in New York City to talk about their bestselling novel, Mad Honey, along with keeping bees (and secrets), what they learned from their collaboration, why they write, their literary inspirations and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured Books (Episode):

Mad Honey by Jennifer Finney Boylan and Jodi Picoult

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult

I’m Looking Through You: A Memoir of Growing Up Haunted by Jennifer Finney Boylan

Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White

Liberation Day by George Saunders

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 27, 2022
Siddhartha Mukherjee on THE SONG OF THE CELL: AN EXPLORATION OF MEDICINE AND THE NEW HUMAN
45:58

“People write medical histories, people write personal case histories, I didn't want to do either. People write memoirs; I wanted to do all of them in the same book. And I wanted to do that without blurring the boundaries between any and all of those… I consider those parts of living history.” Siddhartha Mukherjee is an oncologist, a professor, a bestselling author and a winner of the Pulitzer Prize for his first book, Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. He joins us on the show to talk about his latest book, The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human, along with gene therapies, balancing the future of science with current patient care, the excitement that comes with scientific discovery, his literary influences and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured Books (Episode):

The Song of the Cell by Siddhartha Mukherjee

The Gene by Siddhartha Mukherjee

The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder

The Facemaker by Lindsey Fitzharris

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 25, 2022
Ross Gay on INCITING JOY
47:13

“We were doing all of this for people we did not know and could not imagine. And as is the case, too, like, when you're planting trees, you hope that they're gonna outlive you. And the trees that were planted have outlived some of the people who are deeply involved in that project. Which is, you know…it's both this sorrow and it's a gratitude. We were addressing our needs. And our needs were actually to care for one another, and to join each other, and to love each other and to come to love to love each other, by making this thing for people who we did not know who may or may not be us.” So many of us have found pleasure and solace — and joy — in The Book of Delights by Ross Gay. He’s back with a new variation on that riff, Inciting Joy, and he joins us on the show to talk about variations on gardening, the connection between sorrow and joy, cover songs, football and footnotes, community, the pleasures of not doing anything, what’s he’s been reading and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Inciting Joy by Ross Gay

Catalogue of Unabashed Gratitude by Ross Gay

The Bluest Nude by Ama Codjoe

Or, On Being the Other Woman by Simone White

Under the Sign of Saturn by Susan Sontag

Notes on Sontag by Philip Lopate

War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning by Chris Hedges

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

How to Love the World by James Crews

Film for Her by Orion Carloto

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 22, 2022
Nicholas Dawidoff on THE OTHER SIDE OF PROSPECT: A STORY OF VIOLENCE, INJUSTICE, AND THE AMERICAN CITY
51:22

“When I came back, I was thinking about how to tell the story. And I wanted to meet people who, in one way or another, resembled the young people who I'd known as a kid and I was talking to various people, and I had some ideas. And then I got a call from a lawyer, whose name is Ken. And he called up and he said, You know, I've heard about what you're doing. And I have a client whose experience, I think, speaks to what you're trying to do…” Writer Nicholas Dawidoff (The Catcher was a Spy) spent eight years immersed in the story at the heart of his new book, The Other Side of Prospect: A Story of Violence, Injustice and the American City, and he joins us on the show to talk about the evolution of New Haven (and if it’s possible to go home again), inequality and the American Dream, racism and generational poverty, class, justice, his friendship with acclaimed poet Reginald Dwayne Betts and more with Poured Over's host Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

Featured Books (Episode):

The Other Side of Prospect by Nicholas Dawidoff

Felon by Reginald Dwayne Betts

Manchild in the Promised Land by Claude MacKay

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

The Sun Does Shine by Anthony Ray Hinton

Monster by Walter Dean Myers

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays with occasional Saturdays.

Oct 20, 2022
George Saunders on LIBERATION DAY
53:52

“By making a certain voice, then I'm going to force myself to do new things in that story. The voice is for me, very measured and realistic and regular, regular. But it's almost like DNA. Once you do that, then you're committed to continuing to do it, which means you're committed to finding some kind of power, even in that somewhat limited mode, which is great fun.” The only thing better than reading a short story by George Saunders is listening to him talk about how — and why — he does it. Liberation Day is his first collection of stories since The Tenth of December (a finalist for the National Book Award), and George joins us on the show to talk about his love of the short story form, how writing A Swim in a Pond in the Rain changed his work, learning to be comfortable with uncertainty, voice as ethos, keeping his readers from of mind as he writes (and rewrites), what’s next and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff Book Recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Liberation Day by George Saunders

The Tenth of December by George Saunders

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

A Swim in a Pond in the Rain by George Saunders

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Boys, Beasts, and Men by Sam J. Miller

The Cabinet by Kim Un-Su

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 18, 2022
Lydia Millet on DINOSAURS: A NOVEL
46:38

“There's kind of an aspect of melancholy that I love as a reader… But I can't write a book that I wouldn't want to read… Although I am interested in just sadness and like a certain beautiful quality…I can't write books that I don't want to live in, and I don't really want to live in just a depressed book. I don't want to just live in a depressed world, there has to be more fire than that.” Lydia Millet — finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize (Love in Infant Monkeys) and the National Book Award (A Children’s Bible) — joins us on the show to talk about her latest, Dinosaurs: A Novel, including how the story morphed while she was writing, illusions of normalcy, literal and figurative dinosaurs, how we talk to each other through books, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Madyson.

 

Featured Book (Episode):

Dinosaurs: A Novel by Lydia Millet

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver

Migrations by Charlotte McConaghy

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 15, 2022
Constance Wu on MAKING A SCENE
50:11

“I was always in a play, always in rehearsals. And if I wasn't in a play, I was counting the hours ‘til I could be in a play. Because it was the first time I felt a sense of belonging, a sense of community.” In Making a Scene, actress Constance Wu (Lyle, Lyle Crocodile) takes readers backstage in her own life in often hilarious — and always real and relatable — essays. She joins us on the show to talk about authenticity and big emotions, love, her big break (and what happened next), her literary inspirations including Elena Ferrante and Lily King, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

Featured Books (Episode):

Making a Scene by Constance Wu

Writers & Lovers by Lily King

Five Tuesdays in Winter by Lily King

The Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Hello, Molly! by Molly Shannon

All the Women in My Brain by Betty Gilpin

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 13, 2022
Sequoia Nagamatsu on HOW HIGH WE GO IN THE DARK
48:39

"I think the knee-jerk reaction to pandemic literature — that I think a lot of readers might have as well, I don't want to read that because it's going to be triggering, it's going to be about, you know, CDC scientists brushing against the clock — there are actually very few pandemic novels that I can think of that actually operate on that level. They're thinking about Hollywood, probably, and not about literature. Most plague literature that I can think of, or dystopian literature generally, is about hope. It's about relationships, and family and the tiny little movements that occur in the wake of some sort of tragedy, the search for connection."

Sequoia Nagamatsu's novel-in-stories, How High We Go in the Dark, is an absolute delight, even when the darkness shows (think Sea of Tranquility or Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel or Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell). He joins us on the show to talk about hope and love and grief, being a Bad Asian, music (and other soundtracks) connecting characters and story points, what surprised him as he was writing, his literary inspirations (starting with Italo Calvino) and more with Poured Over's host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

Featured Books (Episode):

How High We Go in the Dark by Sequoia Nagamatsu

The Dead Fish Museum by Charles D'Ambrosio

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

On Such a Full Sea by Chang-rae Lee

Cloud Cuckoo Land by Anthony Doerr

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 11, 2022
Morgan Talty on NIGHT OF THE LIVING REZ
42:37

“I want to tell stories. I hate the whole, don't tell, show mantra because it's not true—it has its like moments like, you know, when the reader finishes something of mine, I want them to feel as if it's something they had experienced, as if it's like a memory for them. Because like, for me, that's always been the best stuff. And like that can be so hard to do.” If you haven’t yet read Morgan Talty’s debut linked story collection Night of the Living Rez, you’re in for an exceptional read; think There There by Tommy Orange or Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson or The Candy House by Jennifer Egan. Morgan—who quotes Jane Austen and Audre Lorde in the course of this conversation—joins us on the show to talk about story structure and inspiration, representation and colonialism (in all its forms), the importance of humor, what he’s been reading and recommending, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode)

Night of the Living Rez by Morgan Talty

A Calm and Normal Heart by Chelsea T. Hicks

Where the Dead Sit Talking by Brandon Hobson

The Last Catastrophe by Allegra Hyde

The Berry Pickers by Amanda Peters

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

The Nick Adams Stories by Ernest Hemingway

My Monticello by Jocelyn Nicole Johnson

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 08, 2022
Celeste Ng on OUR MISSING HEARTS
44:19

“He thinks of himself as a character in a fairy tale in a way who's going on a quest. And there's so many stories like that about a character who's going in search of a lost loved one, whether it's a daughter, a mother, a son, there's this sense of I'm going off to find you. And that's really powerful.” Celeste Ng follows her massive hit Little Fires Everywhere with a novel set in a world that “looks like ours, but with the volume kind of turned up to 11” in Our Missing Hearts, an indelible story about family and identity, art and connection. Celeste joins us on the show to talk about the novel she never planned to write, mothers and sons, coming-of-age (for adults and children), Asian American history, pushing against our ideas of hero figures, being a word nerd and her love of Shakespeare, her literary influences and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TNR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Our Missing Hearts by Celeste Ng
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
Beloved by Toni Morrison
The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston
China Men by Maxine Hong Kingston
Tripmaster Monkey by Maxine Hong Kingston
Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Things We Lost to the Water by Eric Nguyen
The Memory Police by Yoko Ogawa

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 06, 2022
Jess Kidd on THE NIGHT SHIP
38:16

“I want to escape into these like incredible, immersive situations, really. But I think I try and balance this kind of creation of a world or this world building with the dialogue. And that's where things like the humor come in. And particularly with this one, because it's quite a gritty subject. But it was really important to have that joy and have that humor. And to my mind that comes very akin with the bravery in the book and the courage in the book, there is this kind of ability, even under these immense pressures, to have these moments of joy…” Jess Kidd’s ghostly and gothic novels — including Things in Jars and now, The Night Ship, our latest B&N Book Club pick — are some of our absolute favorites. She joins us on the show to talk about the true story behind The Night Ship, the places her research took her, connecting her characters, how writing flash fiction and short stories influence her novels, The Epic of Gilgamesh and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

The Night Ship by Jess Kidd

Mr. Flood’s Last Resort by Jess Kidd

Things in Jars by Jess Kidd

The Epic of Gilgamesh (Andrew George, translator)

Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

Oct 04, 2022
Sarah Thankam Mathews on ALL THIS COULD BE DIFFERENT
41:17

“So you know, something that is a big part of my project…is actually this idea that we deserve pleasure. I think that pleasure and care, these are antidotes against various kinds of violence and degradation that we're all beset with. And so for me, when I wrote this novel, I did not write it for a critic at The New York Times, you know. I wrote it for the past version of me. And I wrote for someone who would need to read this, who would be reading this book after work on the subway.” 

Sarah's Thankam Mathews is making a terrific debut with All This Could Be Different—longlisted for the 2022 National Book Award for Fiction and a finalist for our own Discover Prize—and she joins us on the show to talk about channeling her characters, subverting the coming-of-age novel, challenging the expectations of the immigrant experience, queerness, finding our people and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured Books (Episode): 

Normal People by Sally Rooney 

Lucy by Jamaica Kincaid 

Luster by Raven Leilani 

The New Me by Halle Butler 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.




Oct 01, 2022
Hua Hsu on STAY TRUE: A MEMOIR
53:39

“I think I figured a lot of things out literally as I was writing the book. I'm usually an obsessive methodical writer, or I have everything, if not mapped out, I kind of know spatially, what's going to happen in a piece of writing. But with this, I just kind of had to write it to figure out what it was. For years, friends knew that I was working on this — friends who were in the book, actually. But I could never explain what it was nor could they imagine what it might be. You know, I would just say, I'm writing the story of us, I'm writing a story about Ken.”

Whether he’s riffing on music or sports or Asian American icons like Maxine Hong Kingston, Hua Hsu’s work in The New Yorker is a joy to read. Now he’s turning inward in his new book, Stay True, a beautifully written story of unexpected friendship, shocking loss, and his own coming of age. Hua joins us on the show to talk about grief and growing up, inside jokes, his literary influences, changing the conversations we’re having about Asian America, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books (Episode)

Stay True: A Memoir by Hua Hsu 

A Floating Chinaman: Fantasy and Failure across the Pacific by Hua Hsu 

The Hanging on Union Square by H. T. Tsiang 

Tripmaster Monkey: His Fake Book by Maxine Hong Kingston 

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays with occasional Saturdays.

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 29, 2022
Laura Warrell on SWEET, SOFT, PLENTY RHYTHM
49:25

“I feel like very often when we have stories about womanizing characters, whether we piece those stories out, so we see each woman—individually or not, they don't really have stories. They don't really have lives except as they relate to that main character. So, it was always going to be each woman steps forward, each woman gets a chapter.” Laura Warrell takes us behind the scenes of her smart, sharp and deeply resonant debut novel Sweet, Soft, Plenty RhythmShe joins us on the show to talk about flipping the script, the women she writes about (and letting her characters be who they are), love and loneliness, her writing process and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky. 

 

Featured Books (Episode): 

Sweet, Soft, Plenty Rhythm by Laura Warrell 

Gorilla, My Love by Toni Cade Bambara 

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff): 

Juliet, Naked by Nick Hornby

Utopia Avenue by David Mitchell

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app. 

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here

Sep 27, 2022
Hafizah Augustus Geter on THE BLACK PERIOD: ON PERSONHOOD, RACE, AND ORIGIN
55:13

“I did nothing but read the entire time I was writing this….literally every waking moment, I was doing some type of research and a lot of research I did for this book was on joy and celebration and on community. Because, yes, we're going through all of these things, but there's a reason the cover is bright and celebratory, because that's also where the book goes, where the journey goes.” Hafizah Augustus Geter covers an incredible amount of ground in her memoir The Black Period: On Personhood, Race, and Origin: past and present, able-bodied and disabled, home and away, grief and love. She joins us on the show to talk about her family’s story, her father’s art (which appears in full color throughout the book), who gets to make history and why, her literary influences and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books: 

The Black Period: On Personhood, Race, and Origin by Hafizah Augustus Geter 

Little Devil in America by Hanif Abdurraqib 

The Yellow House by Sarah Broom 

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer 

Year of The Tiger by Alice Wong 

Border and Rule by Harsha Walia 

  

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here

Sep 24, 2022
Hilary Mantel on THE MIRROR & THE LIGHT
30:17

“I think I made a shrewd pick when I chose this character. Because the last thing you want is to be able to say—I understand everything about you—is a character with a lot of ambiguity. And I think some of that is calculated ambiguity. And some of it is probably caused by the fact that the historical record is erased in one way or another. But there’s plenty scope for creative conjecture with Cromwell.” That’s Hilary Mantel from this interview, which originally ran in March 2020 when The Mirror & the Light was published in hardcover.

Once the Queen’s head is severed, he walks away. It’s a fabulous opening line, that first line of The Mirror & the Light, the final volume of Hilary Mantel’s stunning Wolf Hall trilogy. Anne Boleyn is dead and Thomas Cromwell, that brilliant self-made man, Lord Privy Seal, fixer and enforcer the man who drove the English reformation continues his ascent. And his fall, when it comes, is brutal. You may have heard at least part of the story behind the story; Hilary Mantel thought about Thomas Cromwell for 30 years before she started work on Wolf Hall in 2005. What she thought would be a single book became to bring up the bodies arrived in 2012, two years earlier than expected, because she realized 400 pages in that she needed a third volume to tell the story of Thomas Cromwell as it needed to be done. Both Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies won The Booker—Hilary Mantel is the only woman to have won the prize twice…

Sep 23, 2022
Bobby Finger on THE OLD PLACE
46:24

“Ever since we left, when I was 13, it's a place that I think about constantly. I think about it in hypothetical terms. It's something that I just sort of lose myself in all the time. I left before things really got complicated. I left when I was 13. What if I had stayed until now? And what if I had left and gone back? You know, the book kind of stemmed from this story that I had been working through in my mind, all of these hypothetical versions of myself. And then it turned into this.” Bobby Finger, writer and co-host of the celebrity and entertainment podcast Who? Weekly, breaks new ground in his debut novel, The Old Place. Inspired by his real-life roots in Texas, Finger explores the consequences of love and loss in this small-town narrative centered around a retired schoolteacher burdened by a decade-old secret. Bobby discusses his journey to writing a novel, his literary influences and creative process—and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.  And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode): 

The Old Place by Bobby Finger
Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple 

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh 

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff): 

Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perotta 
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman 

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here

Sep 22, 2022
Andrew Sean Greer on LESS IS LOST
46:35

“I already had a kind of Don Quixote set up in mind. And so I was like, Wouldn't it be funny if Arthur was the sort of Sancho Panza in this? I'll just barely touch on it and see where it goes. And I thought he needs someone totally full of himself to shake him up…” Readers fell in love with Arthur Less — and Andrew Sean Greer took home a Pulitzer Prize for Less, the novel that introduced us to Arthur. Andrew joins us on the show to talk about his new novel, the not-really-a-sequel, Less Is Lost, turning tragedy into comedy, rewrites, what scares him as a writer, his literary influences, the writing advice that he still relies on and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we finish this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Less (winner of the Pulitzer Prize) by Andrew Sean Greer
The Confessions of Max Tivoli by Andrew Sean Greer 
The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells by Andrew Sean Greer
Story of a Marriage by Andrew Sean Greer

Chéri by Colette

Don Quixote by Cervantes
A Boy's Own Life by Edmund White

Travels with My Aunt by Graham Greene
Moby Dick by Herman Melville

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood

Bucky F*cking Dent by David Duchovny

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 20, 2022
Saeed Jones on ALIVE AT THE END OF THE WORLD
45:17

“This book feels very much…drawing from the Black Saints: Whitney Houston, Paul Mooney, Little Richard, Luther Vandross, almost my own canon, my own tradition, my own history, to make sense of what's happening now. I’m not going back to Homer, necessarily. I'm kind of trying to create a new lineage, because I feel that we've been betrayed by our presented histories.” Saeed Jones joins us on the show to riff on his incredibly personal and indelible new poetry collection Alive at the End of the World, along with the pervasiveness of grief, how both he and his writing have changed since he published his memoir, what’s up with his new podcast, Vibe Check, and much more with Poured Over’s host Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Alive at the End of the World by Saeed Jones

Prelude to Bruise by Saeed Jones

How We Fight for Our Lives by Saeed Jones

Furious Cool by David Henry and Joe Henry

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 17, 2022
Abdulrazak Gurnah on AFTERLIVES
48:17

"Well, home is a complicated concept....So you've shaken me awake at three o'clock in the morning. Where's home? I’ll say Zanzibar without hesitation. Oh, but then on the other hand, I've been living here and working here for 50 years, my family, my children, and my grandchildren live here. The idea that this is not my home, it's just ridiculous. I just won't have it. You know, this is my home. So home is complicated, both are home, but it means something different." An epic story of life, loss, and love set against an unforgiving landscape of colonial violence, Afterlives is a multi-generational novel set in East Africa that is at once wistful, grounded—and unforgettable. 2021 Nobel Laureate Abdulrazak Gurnah joins us on the show to discuss his body of work, the legacy of colonialism, what it was like to win the Nobel and much more with Poured Over's host, Miwa Messer.

 

Feature Books (Episode):

Afterlives by Abdulrazak Gurnah
Paradise by Abdulrazak Gurnah
Memory of Departure by Abdulrazak Gurnah
Admiring Silence by Abdulrazak Gurnah

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Home by Toni Morrison
Dear Life by Alice Munro

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 15, 2022
Ian McEwan on LESSONS
53:29

“I'm heading into my mid 70s and I really want to just get into a novel and live inside it. No sense of hurry. No deadline, no sense that anyone's waiting for this. I don’t want to talk to anyone about it, but I just want to inhabit it.” Award-winning author Ian McEwan’s new novel, Lessons, takes readers on an emotional journey through the life of one man and McEwan joins us on the show to talk about aging, writing a novel in lockdown, what kinds of books make us cry and much more with Poured Over's host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode):

Lessons by Ian McEwan

Atonement by Ian McEwan

Herzog by Saul Bellow

Cocoon by Zhang Yueran

Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Black Swan Green by David Mitchell

Moonglow by Michael Chabon

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 13, 2022
Jonathan Escoffery, Yiyun Li and Ling Ma on The Art of Fiction
54:35

“I start with the emotion. I don't know what the story is. I don't know who the characters are necessarily. I'm working on very little like, I'm thinking, ‘oh, well, the way this light looks through a window’, or something — very few details here and there. But I don't know what happens in this story.” Join three amazing authors talking about their three fabulous fall reads: If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery, The Book of Goose by Yiyun Li and Bliss Montage by Ling Ma. The authors speak with Poured Over's host, Miwa Messer, about the balance between humor and dread, how they start a project, some of their favorite writers & more.

 

Featured Books (Episode)

If I Survive You by Jonathan Escoffery

The Book of Goose by Yiyun Li

Bliss Montage by Ling Ma

Severance by Ling Ma

How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia by Moshin Hamid

Passing by Nella Larsen

Quicksand by Nella Larsen

The White Boy Shuffle by Paul Beatty

Moby Dick by Herman Mellville

Mrs. Caliban by Rachel Ingalls

The Collected Poems of Frank O’Hara by Frank O’Hara

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin

Artist in the Floating World by Kazuo Ishiguro 

St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised By Wolves by Karen Russell

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 10, 2022
Margaret Wilkerson Sexton on ON THE ROOFTOP
47:28

“…In this particular book, I think I wanted to combat the feeling that we were already inundated with, and even the feelings that are attached to social justice issues. I wanted to combat the feelings of anger and helplessness and all of that with joy.” Margaret Wilkerson Sexton follows her NAACP Image Award-winning novel The Revisioners with On the Rooftop, a stunning novel about a mother whose dream of stardom for her three daughters clashes with their own desires in a rapidly gentrifying 1950s San Francisco. Margaret joins us on the show to talk about wanting to write a book that sits in conversation with Fiddler on the Roof, how her research led her to the Harlem of the West, writing a love story for an older couple, her literary inspirations and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

Featured Books (Episode)

On the Rooftop by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

The Revisioners by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

A Kind of Freedom by Margaret Wilkerson Sexton

The Yellow House by Sarah M Broom

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan

Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout

The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw

All Aunt Hagar’s Children by Edward P. Jones

The Known World by Edward P. Jones

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Swing Time by Zadie Smith

Amy and Isabelle by Elizabeth Strout

 

A complete transcript of this episode is here.

Sep 08, 2022
Javier Zamora on SOLITO
45:22

“That nine-year-old kid still follows me and is with me and is very much a part of me... And this is the hope for the book, not only for non-immigrants, but for immigrants, to really start to have that internal conversation about what we have been through. And I think this book is mostly for them. The book was for me, and then putting it around the world is for everybody. But I hope that non-immigrants can see that we don't want to do this, and that it's difficult, and that we carry this with us every single day.”

Solito is the story Javier Zamora has been trying to get out ever since he started writing. Through choppy waters and unforgiving deserts, this intimate, gripping memoir is an immersive look into the consciousness of a young boy seeking to be reunited with his parents. Listen as Javier talks about reliving trauma, growing up undocumented, poetry as a gateway to therapy, and what it was like to give his nine-year-old self back his voice, with the host of Poured Over, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books (Episode)

Solito by Javier Zamora

Unaccompanied by Javier Zamora

Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

The Long Walk by Slavomir Rawicz

Enrique’s Journey by Sonia Nazario

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 06, 2022
Mason Hereford on TURKEY AND THE WOLF: FLAVOR TRIPPIN' IN NEW ORLEANS
36:11

“I think about food constantly, but more so than anyone else it's the people I work with who are inspiring me now.... I'm always inspired by the people I cook with, and the people I work with in the restaurants, and they're, you know, they're the ones who are inspiring me most right now, because they're making it all happen.” Chef and restaurant owner, Mason Hereford’s new cookbook Turkey and the Wolf: Flavor Trippin’ in New Orleans is full of flavorful, fun recipes and beautiful photos that will delight any appetite. Mason talks about cooking with nostalgia, vintage McDonald’s plates, what his day in the restaurants looks like, what’s inspiring him in the kitchen now, and more with Poured Over guest host Kat Sarfas.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Turkey and the Wolf: Flavor Trippin’ in New Orleans by Mason Hereford

Without Getting Killed or Caught by Tamara Saviano

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 03, 2022
Jessie Burton on THE HOUSE OF FORTUNE
44:42

“I think it is a conversation I'm having with my younger self, who loved the idea of time travel, who loved the idea that these people perhaps not so different from us, who quite quickly could imagine herself out of her body and into another world against all the laws of physics. And I know I'm not alone in that. I think so many people want to read for a moment in their day or week, of escape, but not mindless escape, but detailed, pleasurable, important escape…” Jessie Burton’s debut novel, The Miniaturist, is a stellar, entertaining work of historical fiction that sold a million copies in its first year and has been translated into 40 languages. Jessie returns to 17th century Amsterdam with an unforgettable cast of characters (including a few familiar faces) in her latest, The House of Fortune. She joins us on the show to talk about writing and rewriting, story points and Post-It notes, revisiting characters, her favorite authors and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Titles (Episode)

The House of Fortune by Jessie Burton

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

Brother of the More Famous Jack by Barbara Trapido

 

Featured Titles (TBR Topoff)

The Binding by Bridget Collins

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays with occasional Saturdays.

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Sep 01, 2022
Sarah Addison Allen on OTHER BIRDS
46:25

“I think they grew out of the setting of this weird island, this odd place, this place of southern stories and ghosts and food and how they are misfits, but they find their tribe, they find where they belong with other people who think they don't belong either. And I think that is a universal truth for us all.” Sarah Addison Allen’s charming new novel, Other Birds, is our September B&N Book Club pick and she joins us on the show to talk about ghosts, unconditional love, mothers and mothering, place as a character, the problem with notebooks, her writing process, and more with guest host Allyson Gavaletz. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Other Birds by Sarah Addison Allen

Bittersweet by Susan Cain

The Passion by Jeanette Winterson

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Allyson Gavaletz and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here

Aug 30, 2022
Ada Limón on THE HURTING KIND
46:57

“I think it's really important to remember that poetry has always sort of existed in the moment. It's full of the life that we're living right now. It is a remnant of the life that we're living right now. You know, distilled moments, it's the mess of our life. It's all of those things. And I think we do ourselves a disservice if we think those things don't include joy, that don't include breath and contentedness and moments of peace. And we all have that sometimes, as we struggle.” Ada Limón, our 24th US Poet Laureate and host of the poetry podcast The Slowdown, joins us on the show to take us behind the scenes of her newest book, The Hurting Kind, and talk about the purpose of art, honoring the slipperiness of time, the importance and pleasure of reading out loud, her literary inspirations and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

The Hurting Kind by Ada Limón

Lucky Wreck by Ada Limón

The Friend by Sigrid Nunez

Less by Andrew Sean Greer

Chilean Poet by Alejandro Zambra

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is here.

Aug 27, 2022
R.F. Kuang on BABEL
40:48

“We're all constantly translating ourselves to the world—we all are trying to take the inevitable stuff that happens in our psyche, our fears, and hopes and desires and dreams and trying to communicate that with others. And some of us are more successful at it than others.” A group of four friends find themselves at the center of a deadly battle between good and evil at an alternate 1800s Oxford University in Babel, the epic new novel from R.F. Kuang, author of the bestselling Poppy War series. Rebecca joins us on the show to talk about world-building, friendship, colonialism, her literary inspirations (including The Secret History by Donna Tartt), Victorian ideas of masculinity and queerness, how she writes, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from interns Issa and Jenna.

Featured Books (episode)

Babel by R.F. Kuang

The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell by Susanna Clarke

Racial Melancholia, Racial Dissociation by David L. Eng

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson

Legendborn by Tracy Deonn

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 25, 2022
Beth Macy on RAISING LAZARUS: HOPE, JUSTICE AND THE FUTURE OF AMERICA'S OVERDOSE CRISIS
44:30

“And so, then I thought, Who do I most admireWho taught me the most, and also, they're doing it for completely selfless reasons, right? And I thought, Oh, that moment and the parking lot. So, I thought, I'm going to start a book in the parking lot of a McDonald's dumpster in a dying town and show you how, in the most unlikely places, magic is happening.” Beth Macy’s 2018 bestseller Dopesick and the Emmy-nominated Hulu streamer it inspired have helped changed our national conversation about Opioids and addiction. Her new book, Raising Lazarus, takes a new approach to our ever-growing crisis, focusing on solutions and the people bringing those solutions to our communities. Beth joins us on the show to talk about harm reduction, meeting people where they are, organizing at a local level, the lawsuit against Purdue Pharma and the behavior of the Sackler family, activism, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Raising Lazarus by Beth Macy

Dopesick by Beth Macy

Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)           

Undoing Drugs by Maia Szalavitz

Death in Mud Lick by Eric Eyre

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 23, 2022
Keith Corbin on CALIFORNIA SOUL: AN AMERICAN EPIC OF COOKING AND SURVIVAL
41:40

“But I had fun growing up, you know, kids Double Dutch and playing football in the front yard, trash can basketball, running around 40 deep into projects with extended family, cutting the lights off—we really have fun. Of course, you've seen the drug selling, you've seen the dice games. We found a way to become comfortable in an uncomfortable situation.” Keith Corbin’s story is unlike any we’ve heard for a James Beard Award nominated chef, and he holds nothing back in his candid memoir, California Soul: An American Epic of Cooking and Survival. Keith joins us on the show to talk about representation, the realities of second chances (and why opportunity without support isn’t enough), fact-checking his memories with members of his community, the start of his friendship with fellow chef Daniel Patterson, unexpected loneliness and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Book:

California Soul by Keith Corbin

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 20, 2022
Dr. Moiya McTier on THE MILKY WAY: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF OUR GALAXY
40:45

“To me, science is the rigorous attempt at understanding the world around you. And most people think that that means you're in a lab wearing a coat, working with test tubes. But I think that that's just a matter of using the scientific method in your everyday life. It's a matter of observing the world around you and being curious enough to ask questions and having the logic skills and some math and science skills to find the answers to those questions. But it goes beyond physics and chemistry. It goes beyond math. It goes beyond psychology and sociology, the social sciences.” Dr. Moiya McTier delivers a very fun and somewhat surprising look at our universe in her debut, The Milky Way: An Autobiography of Our Galaxy. Dr. McTier joins us on the show to talk about stepping outside of herself to find our galaxy’s voice, the importance of story (and how it relates to science), growing up in rural Pennsylvania, her hit Exolore podcast, why space isn’t just for billionaires, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we finish this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode)

The Milky Way: An Autobiography of Our Galaxy by Moiya McTier

House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)       

Physics of the Impossible by Michio Kaku

How I Killed Pluto by Mike Brown

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here

Aug 18, 2022
Julian Barnes on ELIZABETH FINCH
01:00:28

“This is one of the great differences between journalism and literature, which I practice in. You write journalism in order for everything to be absolutely clear at the first reading … you write fiction in order to reflect the complexity of the world. And that complexity isn't necessarily grasped at first meeting.” Elizabeth Finch is the latest (and deceptively slim) new novel from Julian Barnes, author of the Booker Prize-winning novel The Sense of an Ending. He joins us on the show to talk about cutting to the chase, unreliable narrators, the intersection of time and memory and history, translating Flaubert, his friendships with fellow Booker Prize-winners Anita Brookner and Ian McEwan, electric typewriters and Blackwing pencils, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we finish this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Elizabeth Finch by Julian Barnes

Flaubert’s Parrot by Julian Barnes

Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (translated by Frances Steegmuller

Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (translated by Lydia Davis)

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Hotel du Lac by Anita Brookner

Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here

Aug 16, 2022
Jana Casale on HOW TO FALL OUT OF LOVE MADLY
43:36

“To me, the thing as a writer that you should always be working towards is like, how can I make this just be delicious for the reader?”

Jana Casale has perfected the art of writing about the ordinary lives of women in such a way that fans of Elena Ferrante and Sally Rooney will flock to, and her latest story following the lives of three young women as they navigate love, How to Fall Out of Love Madly, is just out. Jana joins us on the show to talk about the lives and relationships of Millennial women, body image issues, self-love, loneliness, the influence one teacher had on her decision to be a writer, and much more with guest host, Elani Wilson. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

How to Fall Out of Love Madly by Jana Casale

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

Hello, Molly! by Molly Shannon

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Next Year, for Sure by Zoey Leigh Peterson

Real Life by Brandon Taylor

 

This episode of Poured Over is produced and hosted by Elani Wilson and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 11, 2022
Jasmine Guillory on Writing Characters We Love
42:34

“All three of the books that I have written during the pandemic have really been my way of going into another world and finding a place where none of this was happening. And that I could just relax and have fun. And so, I hope that my books are that kind of fun, joyous of maybe slightly salacious time for readers, too, because that's what I enjoyed as I was writing them.” Jasmine Guillory is one of our favorite rom-com authors, with her seventh and eighth books (By the Book and Drunk on Love) releasing this year. Jasmine joins us on the show to talk about writing Black leads in romance, her literary influences, releasing three books during the pandemic and connecting with readers in person again, her love for the Bay Area, the elements that make up a signature Jasmine Guillory novel, and much more with guest host, Elani Wilson. And we end this episode with a TBR Topoff with Marc and Rhys riffing on their favorite Jasmine Guillory novels

 

Featured Books (episode)

Drunk on Love by Jasmine Guillory

While We Were Dating by Jasmine Guillory

By the Book by Jasmine Guillory

Party of Two by Jasmine Guillory

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory

The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory

Royal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory

The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory

Counterfeit by Kirstin Chen

 

This episode of Poured Over is produced and hosted by Elani Wilson and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 09, 2022
Tess Gunty on THE RABBIT HUTCH
44:50

“To write a young woman who refuses to define herself by anything other than her activism, her mind, her curiosity, that was just a delight, and she wasn't the most predictable character, but she was the one who told me what to do on every page.” How to describe Tess Gunty’s dynamic debut, The Rabbit Hutch? Think Jennifer Egan + Denis Johnson. Think polyphonic novel about climate change and gentrification and coming-of-age in a dying American Dream with an unforgettable 18-year-old as its heart. Tess joins us on the show to talk about loneliness and connection, South Bend and Studebaker automobiles, needing to leave home in order to write about it, how an anxious kid became a writer, mysticism, revision, the poets and writers who inspire her and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

The Rabbit Hutch by Tess Gunty

A Swim in a Pond in the Rain by George Saunders

A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

NW by Zadie Smith

Great House by Nicole Krauss

Middlemarch by George Eliot

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward

The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays, with occasional Saturdays.

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 06, 2022
Ryka Aoki on LIGHT FROM UNCOMMON STARS
45:51

“But when I write, that's when I feel I can take part in society, I can contribute to ideas, and to teach and to share, and to say, I love you to society—to maybe talk about some of the difficult things in life, but to affirm that these experiences only serve to make life what it is.” From space aliens and cursed violins to a Queen of Hell with a heart, to found family, coming-of-age and living in your truest self, Ryka Aoki’s Light from Uncommon Stars is our latest Speculative Fiction Monthly Pick and it’s an absolute blast to read. Ryka joins us on the show to talk about world-building, the San Gabriel Valley, writing love stories, the evolution of science fiction, her literary inspirations, donuts and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Book (episode)

Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Blackwater Sister by Zen Cho

The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays with occasional Saturdays.

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 04, 2022
Anthony Marra on MERCURY PICTURES PRESENTS
45:28

“There's just so much rich material in Hollywood during the 1940s—which is where much of the book is set—there is just sort of an endless rabbit hole you can go down. And of course, one of the problems with writing a book about the movie industry is that sitting around watching movies technically counts as research.” We still think about Anthony Marra’s incredible debut, A Constellation of Vital Phenomena, years after first reading. His newest novel, Mercury Pictures Presents, is an epic story of family secrets, love and war, loyalty and reinvention that cuts between Hollywood and Mussolini’s Italy in the 1930s and 40s—and it’s the August B&N Book Club pick. Anthony joins us on the show to talk about mapping stories, the landscape of exile and imprisonment, the importance of humor, research and rewrites and snappy dialogue, his literary inspirations (including Zadie Smith and David Mitchell), and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book reviews from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode):

Mercury Pictures Presents by Anthony Marra

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

The Tsar of Love and Techno by Anthony Marra

Los Angeles in the 1930s: The WPA Guide to the City of Angels by Federal Writers Project of the Works Progress Administration

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

West of Sunset by Stewart O’Nan

A Touch of Stardust by Kate Alcott

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Aug 02, 2022
Eleanor Brown on ANY OTHER FAMILY
45:20

“I just had so many questions about adoption and motherhood. And you know, you've read my books, you know that I'm very interested in what makes a family and how does our family influence us. And that's all part of this book, too.” From her sparkling debut, The Weird Sisters, to her latest, Any Other Family, Eleanor Brown writes big-hearted novels with hopeful endings about family and finding ourselves. She joins us on the show to talk about the story behind her latest novel, how questions and character drive her novels, capturing children’s voices on the page, how she approaches the writing process, what she’s been reading and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Titles (episode)

Any Other Family by Eleanor Brown

The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

The Light in Paris by Eleanor Brown

All You Can Ever Know by Nicole Chung

The Lioness by Chris Bohjalian

The Foundling by Ann Leary

Cult Classic by Sloane Crosley

On Writing by Stephen King

 

Featured Titles (TBR Topoff)

Run by Ann Patchett

The Jane Austen Society by Natalie Jenner

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 28, 2022
Eric Kim on KOREAN AMERICAN: FOOD THAT TASTES LIKE HOME
56:19

“What's really interesting about taste memory is it's not that you're trying to necessarily replicate the dish exactly as it was, I think you're actually just trying to replicate your memory of it, because your memory is always going to be the platonic ideal of it.” Eric Kim has a delightful approach to food, and his debut cookbook is a charming exploration of the Korean American table. He joins us on the show to talk about home cooking and how our family stories connect to food, representation (and how his parents landed in Atlanta), the politics of spam, his pantry must-haves, making kimchi, finding joy in a creative space, testing recipes with his mom, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Korean American: Food That Tastes Like Home by Eric Kim

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Free Food for Millionaires by Min Jin Lee

I’ll Be the One by Lyla Lee

Crying in H-Mart by Michelle Zauner

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 26, 2022
Alice Elliott Dark on FELLOWSHIP POINT
47:29

“One thing I really have learned—or at least for myself about writing—is never to explain why a person is the way they are, just to make a dramatic case for why they are the way they are. So, the moments I have that are backstory, or that go back and forth in time, it's because that backstory or that moment of slippage of time is dramatically relevant to the present moment of the story.” Alice Elliott Dark (In the Gloaming) returns with Fellowship Point, a spectacular novel of friendship and family, love and loss, loyalty and legacy. She joins us on the show to talk about her modern 19th-century novel, where she’s been for the last few years, what we often take for granted when it comes to women’s lives, the craft of writing, her literary influences, what’s next for her and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer, live from our flagship store at Union Square in New York City. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode):

Fellowship Point by Alice Elliott Dark

In the Gloaming by Alice Elliott Dark

The Hours by Michael Cunningham

Middlemarch by George Eliott

Matrix by Lauren Groff

Oh William! by Elizabeth Strout

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Nightwoods by Charles Frazier

Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café by Fannie Flagg

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 21, 2022
Isaac Fitzgerald on DIRTBAG, MASSACHUSETTS
43:29

“I wish I could tell you that I went to a cabin and wrote it perfectly and got it in on time, and it just flowed out of me. But really, the truth of the matter is, it came in fits and starts. And it was written on notepads and half-filled notebooks and phone apps and bar napkins….I grew up in a time of a lot of white men writing, Oh, my sad childhood stories. And so, my whole thing was I'm not going to do that, I'm not going to do that.” Isaac Fitzgerald walks through the world with an open heart, and luckily for readers, he takes notes. Dirtbag, Massachusetts is his memoir-in-essays, and it covers plenty of ground, from his unconventional childhood and the librarians who helped change the trajectory of his life, to issues of class and code switching and complicated family dynamics, to the craft of writing and his literary inspirations. He joins us on the show to talk about all that and more, including a few things that didn’t make the book’s final draft, with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Dirtbag, Massachusetts by Isaac Fitzgerald

Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay

The White Boy Shuffle by Paul Beatty

The Stories of Breece D’J Pancake  by Andre Dubus III, Breece D'J Pancake

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs

The Tender Bar by J.R. Moehringer

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 19, 2022
Becky Chambers on A PRAYER FOR THE CROWN-SHY
41:55

“The primary intent of these books is to take a break... have something you can just curl up with for an afternoon. This is a book that is not going to hurt you. And I think that that's so vital in this day and age, to be able to just pause for a second. I want the book to feel like a cup of tea as well... But I wanted to give you the option of chewing on some of the stuff in there.”

Hugo Award-winning author Becky Chambers is arguably a master of the space opera, with her complex, hopeful characters and her compelling world-building. Sibling Dex and Mosscap return in A Prayer for the Crown-Shy, the latest book in the Monk and Robot series and Becky joins us on the show to talk about creating a story that incorporates the same comfort as watching your favorite TV show for the 10,000th time, how a good cup of tea can make a bad day better, what’s on her TBR list, and much more with guest host, Allyson Gavaletz. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

A Prayer for the Crown-Shy by Becky Chambers

A Psalm for the Wild-Built by Becky Chambers

Spear by Nicola Griffith

How to Do Nothing by Jenny Odell

Light from Uncommon Stars by Ryka Ayoki

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

I, Robot by Isaac Asimov

A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C. A. Fletcher

 

This episode of Poured Over is produced and hosted by Allyson Gavaletz and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jul 16, 2022
T. Kingfisher on WHAT MOVES THE DEAD
44:45

“When you're writing a children's book, it shares much relation with horror, because it has to be usually very immediate and very visceral and gripping. Because otherwise the kids are gonna get bored. And your window of opportunity to grab the reader is … longer with horror, you can do the slow creeping dread better, but you have to grab the reader, metaphorically, by the throat.”

Whether you know her as Ursula Vernon or T. Kingfisher, one thing is for sure—this Hugo, Nebula, and Locus award-winning author always pulls us in with her captivating fantasies and chilling thrillers—which remains true of her two new books, Nettle & Bone and What Moves the Dead, both releasing this year. Ursula joins us on the show to talk about the fine line between writing children’s books and writing horror and her love for gothic stories, the artwork that inspired this stunning cover, mycology, the lesser-known life of Beatrix Potter, what she’s working on next and what games she’s playing, and much more with guest host, Kat Sarfas. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher

Nettle & Bone by T. Kingfisher

The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Writings by Edgar Allen Poe

The White People and Other Weird Stories by Arthur Machen

The Willows by Algernon Blackwood

The Angel of the Crows by Katherine Addison

The Haunted Mesa by Louis L'Amour

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

The Initial Insult by Mindy McGinnis

The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard

 

This episode of Poured Over is produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jul 14, 2022
Caleb Gayle on WE REFUSE TO FORGET: A TRUE STORY OF BLACK CREEKS, AMERICAN IDENTITY, AND POWER
45:40

“But there is joy in advocating for changing of the world for the better, for not allowing the world to tell you who you shall be, but rather reimagining a world in which you can be anything.”

Award-winning journalist and professor at Northeastern University Caleb Gayle delivers a stunningly original story of America in his first book, We Refuse to Forget: A True Story of Black Creeks, American Identity, and Power. Caleb joins us on the show to talk about growing up in Tulsa, Oklahoma and the aftermath of the 1921 Tulsa Massacre, the untold stories of marginalized communities, his hopeful outlook for the future of the country, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

We Refuse to Forget: A True Story of Black Creeks, American Identity, and Power by Caleb Gayle

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff):

Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann

Jonny Appleseed by Joshua Whitehead

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jul 12, 2022
Chris Bohjalian on Telling Stories
46:41

“I decided to give myself the license to fail, and to write across gender, to write in the voice of a midwife's daughter. And if the book isn't working, fine, we'll write it from the perspective of the midwife's husband, from some other male character. But I loved it. It was so emancipating to not be me, to not be (at the time) this 30-something dude. And I loved it. And I think, my best books, my best characters, whether it's first person or third person, are women.”

 

Bestselling author and all-around charmer Chris Bohjalian has written 23 books, including our May 2021 B&N Book Club pick Hour of the WitchThe Flight Attendant—now a hit HBO series—and his latest, The Lioness. Chris joins us on the show to talk about his love of bookstores, not writing the same story twice, researching and asking questions and learning stories, letting his characters guide the plot and going back to the first sentence, geography as a character, and so much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with a TBR Topoff with Marc and Becky riffing on their favorite Bohjalian novels.

 

Featured Books:

Water Witches by Chris Bohjalian

Midwives by Chris Bohjalian

The Red Lotus by Chris Bohjalian

The Sandcastle Girls by Chris Bohjalian

Hour of the Witch by Chris Bohjalian

The Lioness by Chris Bohjalian

The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian

The Night Strangers by Chris Bohjalian

The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian

The Light in the Ruins by Chris Bohjalian

Skeletons at the Feast by Chris Bohjalian

Our Country Friends by Gary Shteyngart

Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jul 09, 2022
Ibram X. Kendi on HOW TO RAISE AN ANTIRACIST
30:13

“And so, too often, kids are raised to have empathy for people who look like them, or worship like them or act like them. And we're also taught to have empathy for people who deserve it. And I wanted to convey the importance of raising our kids to have empathy for people who don't look like them or don't live near them. And for us to not make our empathy almost like a tip in which it's transactional."

 

Award-winning, bestselling author and MacArthur Genius Grant recipient Ibram X. Kendi returns with How to Raise an Antiracist, a book that parents, caregivers and teachers won't want to miss. Ibram joins us on the show to talk about his own family's experiences, as well as the intersection of ableism and racism, learning from our children, the importance of joy, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

How to Raise an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

Magnolia Flower by Zora Neale Hurston

Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You: A Remix of the National Book Award-winning Stamped from the Beginning by Jason Reynolds, Ibram X. Kendi

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jul 07, 2022
Gabrielle Zevin on TOMORROW, AND TOMORROW, AND TOMORROW
45:22

“I never thought I would be writing something where there would be a lot of intricate feelings around the game engine. But then if you think about something like say, like Sally Rooney's Normal People, who would think that you could feel so much passion over whether like, they go to that dance together, you know?” Gabrielle Zevin’s delightful new novel, Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is part love story, part coming of age and entirely unforgettable—which is why it’s our July B&N Book Club pick. Gabrielle joins us on the show for a spoiler-free conversation about her latest book, from the parallels between writing novels and video games, to Shakespeare and Emily Dickinson, money and class, creativity, friendship and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (episode)

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin

The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 05, 2022
Brian Broome on PUNCH ME UP TO THE GODS
45:17

“The most important thing is the reader. I tell my students, Look, if you're writing about yourself, it's great that you want to get your feelings out. You want to maybe, you know, have some catharsis. You want to get the earliest things out. But, if you bore the reader, you're done. You know, and it's important to consider the fact that you're telling a story…this is not a therapy session, you know, you're telling a story. And hopefully that story enlightens, or maybe makes the reader think.” Brian Broome’s acclaimed memoir Punch Me Up to the Gods is a stunning story of love and loss, secrets and shame, sorrow and joy. He joins us on the show for a wise and often very funny conversation about spelling bees and ballet, addiction and recovery, how his memoir is in conversation with Gwendolyn Brooks and bell hooks and James Baldwin, what his students have taught him and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books (Episode):

Punch Me Up to the Gods by Brian Broome

We Real Cool: Black Men and Masculinity by bell hooks

 

Featured Books (TBR Topoff)

How We Fight For Our Lives by Saeed Jones

Unprotected by Billy Porter

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jul 02, 2022
Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin on MY NAME IS JASON, MINE TOO
46:24

“For me, and perhaps for both of us, I think that our greatest sort of skill set is audacity. It's so funny the way people sort of negatively connote ego, but I think it's necessary to have some, because one has to have a little bit of, I mean, like, when we were 20 years old, our whole thing was we're gonna rearrange and change the way people think of the book, right?” Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin have been friends for 20 years and that friendship has led to an incredible artistic collaboration in Ain’t Burned All the Bright and the now reissued My Name is Jason, Mine TooJason and Jason join us on the show to talk about how their collaboration works, how they make art (and when the medium matters), masculinity, the incredible range of artists and media that inspire them both, why paper and pencil is sometimes all that you need, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Ain’t Burned All the Bright by Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin

My Name is Jason, Mine Too by Jason Reynolds and Jason Griffin

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jun 30, 2022
Patrick Radden Keefe on ROGUES: TRUE STORIES OF GRIFTERS, KILLERS, REBELS AND CROOKS
46:02

“It's so painful to me to feel as though the very notion of objective truth or that journalism could be a vehicle for expressing a kind of objective truth is under assault today.” Patrick Radden Keefe is one of the best longform journalists working today, and we’d follow his dogged reporting anywhere, from bestselling books like Say Nothing and Empire of Pain, to his work as a staff writer at The New Yorker, some of which is collected in his latest book, Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks. Patrick joins us on the show to talk about the art of the write-around and why access is overrated, how one story can lead to the next (or not), writing about morally complicated people (and the stories they tell themselves), the importance of media literacy and getting the facts right, his literary influences and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks by Patrick Radden Keefe

Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe

Say Nothing by Patrick Radden Keefe

Snakehead by Patrick Radden Keefe

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesday and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 28, 2022
Ava Reid on JUNIPER & THORN
42:24

"So much classic fantasy exists in this sort of timeless state where, you know, whatever fantasy world it's set in has kind of always existed....I've always been really interested in kind of disrupting that and kind of setting my books during periods of like, enormous change and upheaval, like, I'm really interested in the idea of a fantasy world that has not always been the same, because that's not how the world works, and kind of taking apart these things that are really taken for granted.”

 

Ava Reid knows how to do unforgettable fractured fairy tale retellings with fabulous, fierce heroines, hidden magic and family ties based on Hungarian and Jewish folklore. The Wolf and the Woodsman was her debut novel and her latest, Juniper & Thorn, is a gothic horror retelling of the Grimm Brothers’ The Juniper-Tree, and she joins us on the show to talk about world-building by starting from the present and working backwards, diversifying the stereotypical Eastern European fantasy setting, killing off characters for the right reason, designing the cover art, her upcoming YA fantasy debut, what she’s reading right now, and much more with guest host Kat Sarfas. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

The Juniper-Tree by Brothers Grimm     

Matrix by Lauren Groff

Our Crooked Hearts by Melissa Albert

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas, and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 25, 2022
Ed Yong on AN IMMENSE WORLD
48:48

“I sort of figured that, having been interested in science from as long as I can remember, I would be a PhD student, and make a career for myself and research. And it turned out that the one hitch with that plan was that I am catastrophically bad at doing actual research. I was the world's worst graduate student….So instead, I thought that I would find a different purpose and better joy in talking and writing about science, which is what I did. That nourishes my soul much more; I get to learn about a lot of really cool things.” An Immense World is the delightful new book from The Atlantic staff writer Ed Yong, and he joins us on the show to talk about meeting animals on their own terms, the connection between Jane Austen and mice, peacocks and The Bee Gees; how hearing is also a kind of touch and how deer-like creatures transformed into whales; his pandemic puppy and his literary inspirations (including Mary Roach) and much more, with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

An Immense World by Ed Yong

I Contain Multitudes by Ed Yong

How Far the Light Reaches by Sabrina Imbler

H Is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jun 23, 2022
Ottessa Moshfegh on LAPVONA
40:48

“I wanted to write something that was going to take me away, literally and metaphorically, literally take me away from sitting with my feelings about the present moment and take me to another place and this time where you couldn't travel at all. I barely left the neighborhood to play out some imagined incredible drama … I think escapism has its purpose, you know, and so does fiction in general, if we want to live in the biggest world possible, we need everybody's imagination to be there in the ether so we can grab it and follow it and follow ourselves through this journey beyond what we know.” Acclaimed author Ottessa Moshfegh (EileenMy Year of Rest and Relaxation) joins us on the show to take us behind the scenes of Lapvona, her unexpected new novel set in a medieval village. Ottessa riffs on putting so much of what disgusts her into this new novel, writing in the third person, faith, the importance of creating a new topography, what’s next for her and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his guest bookseller, Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Lapvona by Ottessa Moshfegh

My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh

Homesick for Another World by Ottessa Moshfegh

McGlue by Ottessa Moshfegh

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Jun 21, 2022
Geraldine Brooks on HORSE
47:12

“You know, Marlon James said something once, he said, if you're going to write about the enslaved, and you're not going to write about the resilience, and the brilliance, and the incredible ability to make a life in a brutal system, a life full of love and some joy, then he said, he's not interested in reading that book.”

Geraldine Brooks, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, March, is known for her moving historical novels. Her latest, Horse, is a stunning new novel that transports readers between 1850s Kentucky and the present day following a legendary thoroughbred racehorse named Lexington.

Geraldine joins us on the show to talk about the real-world experiences of her unforgettable characters and why we still talk about slavery, growing up on the mindset that books are food, reading poetry before writing as part of her creative process, her literary influences and so much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Horse by Geraldine Brooks

March by Geraldine Brooks

Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks

The Island of Adventure by Enid Blyton

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 18, 2022
Sloane Crosley on CULT CLASSIC
47:50

“...A part of the point of the book was to not shy away from what we shy away from in real life. And one of the things we shy away from in real life is admitting for exactly how long we are a mess and don't know what we're doing.”

From her classic essay collections, including I Was Told There Would Be Cake through her last bestselling novel, The Clasp, Sloane Crosley keeps us entertained with her trademark wit, voice and gimlet eye. Her latest, the genre-busting new novel, Cult Classic, is gobs of fun and utterly original, and Sloane joins us on the show to talk about love and relationships and finding our sense of self, the fantasy of consistency, aiming through the wood and at the chopping block, having the same editor (or therapist) for 14 years, her literary influences, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. 

 

Featured Books:

Cult Classic by Sloane Crosley

The Clasp by Sloane Crosley

The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. by Adelle Waldman

Loitering with Intent by Muriel Spark

Pitch Dark by Renata Adler

The Flamethrowers by Rachel Kushner

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 16, 2022
Hannah Whitten on FOR THE THRONE
42:22

“And when you give people the option to kind of live inside the head of a different character … if you're doing your job, and you make it a character that they can see themselves in and they can empathize with, and then you kind of throw these things at them. And then it just changes the way that people think about something.” 

For the Throne is the stunning conclusion to the Wilderwood duology that invokes familiar fairy tales with sharp prose and epic world-building, and it’s out now. Hannah joins us on the show to talk about what draws readers to retellings, The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings as a gateway to all fantasy, writing fanfiction and what she does with all those candles, The Foxglove King, her dream cast, what she’s reading and watching right now and much more with guest host Kat Sarfas. 

 

Featured Books:

For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten

For the Throne by Hannah Whitten

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien

The Hunter by Kerrigan Byrne

Follow Me to Ground by Sue Rainsford

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas, and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 14, 2022
Corban Addison on WASTELANDS: THE TRUE STORY OF FARM COUNTRY ON TRIAL
39:08

“It was the people really, that convinced me that this was a story not just worth telling, but needed to be told, and needed to be told the right way, in a way that would actually be fun to read and engaging, that would reach broader than an academic audience that would reach deep into the community and say, you know, this is a story about ordinary people trying to get justice in a time and place in America where it's pretty hard to do that…”

Wastelands: The True Story of Farm Country on Trial is the true story of an epic battle of power and justice, good and evil, with heroes to remind us that there is virtue in the world. Corban Addison joins us on the show to talk about his nonfiction legal thriller—a book John Grisham says he wished he'd written—centered on the Black and brown residents of eastern North Carolina, two million hogs and the men who run the big business of pork, along with the ways story connects and empowers communities, the hours of personal interviews and research that informed his writing, what next for him, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

A Civil Action by Jonathan Harr

Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

City on Fire by Don Winslow

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 11, 2022
Leila Mottley on NIGHTCRAWLING
43:46

“I really wanted to depict the ways that young Black girls are made adults by a culture that sees us as that. And I wanted to show the way that that pressure piles on and what it does to teenage Black girls, who are really often forgotten in our culture.”

 

Nightcrawling is a powerful story of family, grief and justice with an unforgettable teenage narrator (and equally unforgettable author), and it’s out now. Leila Mottley joins us on the show to talk about writing her first novel at 14, sibling dynamics, the importance of published Black authors, the portrayal of young Black girls in the media, gentrification in Oakland, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. 

 

Featured Books:

Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

There There by Tommy Orange

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Jun 09, 2022
Tom Perrotta on TRACY FLICK CAN'T WIN
41:49

“Tracy never went away. So yes, you can say I'm bringing her back, but the culture kept her in circulation in a way that was really interesting to me, and at times a little alienating. It’s like you create a character and, suddenly, she's played brilliantly by Reese Witherspoon, and in a sense, that becomes the public's image of the character — and I love that performance as much as anybody. But then Tracy got picked up by political journalists and by the internet as a kind of shorthand for an overly ambitious woman… In a sense she became a kind of touchstone and a shorthand and sometimes a bit of a stereotype, caricature, whatever.”

Tracy Flick Can’t Win is the first time Tom Perrotta (ElectionLittle Children, The Leftovers, Mrs. Fletcher) has revisited a character from one of his bestselling novels, and his timing couldn’t be better. Tom joins us on the show to talk about comic (and counterintuitive) openers, why he returned to Tracy’s orbit, how our own stories change over time, mental gymnastics, why he doesn’t see himself as a satirist, adapting his work for the screen and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured Books:
Tracy Flick Can’t Win by Tom Perrotta
Election by Tom Perrotta

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jun 07, 2022
Katie Runde on THE SHORE
50:18

“I missed it so much. And definitely didn't get it or appreciate the specialness of it, or this particular beauty of it … until you have to show up at a party full of strangers. And answer that, where are you from question so many times. I'm not sure I would have written this book, if I didn't have to do that over and over and over again, in so many different places.” That’s Katie Runde, riffing on the Jersey Shore; it’s more than just the setting for her debut novel, The Shore, it’s a character in its own right. Katie joins us on the show to talk about writing a coming-of-age novel for an entire family, homesickness, grief, sisterhood, jump-starting her own writing career with help from Jami Attenberg’s #1000wordsofsummer + a Catapult class + a Tin House workshop, her literary inspirations for this book and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the show with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his guest bookseller, Becky.

 

Featured Books:

The Shore by Katie Runde

Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance by Alison Espach

We Are Not Ourselves by Matthew Thomas

Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong

Wild by Cheryl Strayed

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Jun 04, 2022
David Levithan on BOY MEETS BOY
44:18

“I was very, very unintentionally smart in that I started it as a short story, I genuinely believed it was a short story, which was good, because if I hadn't sat down and said, I'm now going to write my first novel I'd probably still be working on it, but because it was a short story that got longer and became a long story, and then became a novella. And then like, Oh, I'm writing the book that I want in the world, both as a person and as an editor.” David Levithan’s Boy Meets Boy is one of the most charming rom-coms we’ve ever read, and David joins us on the show to talk about his development as a writer and editor, the power of story, his creative process, his writing partnerships with Rachel Cohn (Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares) and others, his literary influences, Heartstopper, what he’s learned from his readers and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the show with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his guest bookseller, Rhys.

Featured Books:

Boy Meets Boy (B&N Exclusive Edition) by David Levithan
Every Day by David Levithan
Answers in the Pages by David Levithan


Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

 

Jun 02, 2022
Sarai Walker on THE CHERRY ROBBERS
45:09

“I didn't want it to be just a very overwhelming dark book. I mean, it has so much tragedy that I had to balance that I wanted to make it part of, you know, light and airy and fun and frothy and feminine to contrast with what's going to happen. I think there's power in that contrast ... I felt like it can't all be this very goth all the time, this very gothic world, the kind of fog-on-the-Moors kind of thing…” We were utterly thrilled by Sarai Walker’s debut novel, Dietland—inspired in part by beauty culture and in part by Fight Club (yep, that one)—and we’re delighted by her newest, The Cherry Robbers. Sarai joins us on the show to talk about sisterhood, love, marriage, romance, feminism, her literary inspirations (including Emily Dickinson and Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life), and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his bookseller guest, Becky.

 

Featured Books:

The Cherry Robbers by Sarai Walker

Dietland by Sarai Walker

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

May 31, 2022
Steve Almond on ALL THE SECRETS OF THE WORLD
51:39

"And I had to actually give up and say, Okay, maybe I'll go to the grave not having written a novel, and I don't have to carry around shame about that. I can just do the kind of writing that I'm maybe better at or that it is my calling to do, and the moment I stopped putting so much pressure on myself and stopped making it a big ego drama about me, that actually opened up space in my creative life for me to enter the hearts and minds of all these characters who were all keeping secrets from one another.” Steve Almond—bestselling author, co-host of The Dear Sugars podcast, writing teacher—has just published his first novel, All the Secrets of the World, and he joins us on the show to talk about revisiting California in the 80s, keeping empathy for all of his characters, his literary influences (including Kurt Vonnegut, George Saunders and Lorrie Moore), share some great writing advice, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

All the Secrets of the World by Steve Almond

William Stoner and the Battle for Inner Life by Steve Almond

Stoner by John Williams

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 28, 2022
Honorée Fanonne Jeffers on The Love Songs of W.E.B Du Bois
46:20

“I'm always coming back to Chicasetta, in the same way that Ernest Gaines always comes back to Bayonne parish. And William Faulkner always comes back to that county that I cannot pronounce, your top or whatever it is, right. You know, in the same way that Louise Erdrich returns to the particular reservation, I'm always coming back to these characters.” Finalist for the National Book Award, poet Honorée Fanonne Jeffers has conjured an epic and indelible story of an American family with The Love Songs of W.E.B. Du Bois; beautifully written, it’s a story we never wanted to end (and you won’t either). Honorée joins us on the show to talk about love and home and family, the legacy of slavery, colorism, feminism, writing about Black joy, Lucille Clifton, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his bookseller guest, Becky.

Featured Book:

The Long Songs of W.E.B Du Bois by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 26, 2022
Akwaeke Emezi on YOU MADE A FOOL OF DEATH WITH YOUR BEAUTY
43:28

“I had a dream about them. I have like these really cinematic dreams. And I woke up from this one. And I was like, this is a fantastic, messy little story, this is a love triangle that I want to read about. I want to—as a reader, as a viewer—I want to see this play out. And the only way I could get it to play out was to you know, write it.” Critically acclaimed author Akwaeke Emezi (FreshwaterThe Death of Vivek Oji, and Pet, among other novels) delivers a page-turning modern romance in their fabulous new novel, You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty. They join us on the show to talk about their love of romance novels and belief in love at first sight, grief and growing up, celebrity and food, fun and sex, their own work in the visual arts, the writers and artists who inspire them, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Book: 

You Made a Fool of Death With Your Beauty by Akwaeke Emezi

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 24, 2022
Candice Millard on RIVER OF THE GODS
40:56

“…You have to have so much primary source material that you are drowning, you think you can never get through it all. That's the only way you get dialogue, you get all those details, you know, that really make you feel like you're there and kind of at you just like sinking into the story and forgetting everything else.” We’ll follow bestselling author Candice Millard anywhere at any time—her latest book, River of the Gods, takes us on the epic search for the head of the Nile River with Sir Richard Burton, John Hanning Speke and Sidi Mubarak Bombay, the man who helped them succeed (and stay alive). Candice joins us on the show to talk about the stories and the characters behind “one of the greatest mysteries in this history of human exploration,” her field research and writing process, human nature, disease and disaster, the writers who’ve inspired her and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations featuring Marc and his bookseller guest, Erin.

 

Featured Books:

River of the Gods by Candice Millard

The River of Doubt by Candice Millard

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 21, 2022
Emma Straub on THIS TIME TOMORROW
44:18

“That was really what I wanted to get at. The relationships that you have with the people who you love so much, and who you're so close with that you don't have to talk to them all the time.” All of Emma Straub’s novels have big beating hearts, no matter who or what or where or when she’s writing about. This Time Tomorrow is her “autobiographical time travel novel” and it’s an absolute delight. Emma joins us on the show to talk about why she writes, giving herself permission to try something new, how she set her rules for time travel (and how she stays grounded), her horrifying teenage diaries, bookselling and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and bookseller guest Becky.

 

Featured Books:

This Time Tomorrow by Emma Straub

Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures by Emma Straub

The Colossus of New York by Colson Whitehead

Desperate Characters by Paula Fox

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 19, 2022
Selma Blair on MEAN BABY
39:11

“But then when I read that Raymond Carver said he didn't have the ability to write, you know, a full novel. He was a sprinter and I thought, Oh, maybe I could do itIs there any such thing as a half a paragraph short story, because that was all I had the focus for. So, it took me a long, long time to write this book.” Actress (Cruel IntentionsHellboyLegally Blonde), model, muse to Karl Lagerfeld, mom to a young son, subject of an indelible documentary (Introducing, Selma Blair on discovery+), now author of the memoir Mean Baby, Selma Blair joins us on the show to talk about the title of her book, her relationship with her mother and mentors Ingrid Sischy of Interview Magazine and Carrie Fisher, her love of Joan Didion and C.S. Lewis, the village that came together to help her get her memoir into the world, living with multiple sclerosis and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Marc and his bookseller guest Becky.

 

Featured Books:

Mean Baby by Selma Blair

The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

Till We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 17, 2022
Alison Espach on NOTES ON YOUR SUDDEN DISAPPEARANCE
39:57

“For me, part of the fun of coming-of-age novels, both reading and writing, is getting to have that adult perspective on these youthful moments and kind of allow you to make sense of them in a way you couldn't before; it can allow you to forgive yourself for some of the things maybe you did, it can allow you to laugh at some of the things that horrified you, and that can bring peace and joy and resolution.” It’s been a minute since Alison Espach’s debut novel The Adults — she joins us on the show to talk about the inspiration behind her new novel, Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance, writing love stories, sitting with grief, her obsession with the passage of time in life and in books, Lorrie Moore’s Self-Help, and much more with Poured Over’s Host, Miwa Messer. And we end the show with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Notes on Your Sudden Disappearance by Alison Espach

Self-Help by Lorrie Moore

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 14, 2022
Jennifer Weiner on THE SUMMER PLACE
43:05

“I was thinking about caretaking. And I was thinking about mothers because I lost my mom last year, but just the places that feel familiar and how they almost become characters in our heads. Like when I think about the house where I grew up, and I can remember it so specifically right down to the way like the closet smelled or when I think about all the time I spent in Cape Cod, the way the sand on the beach feels at low tide or the way the wind sounds when it's late at night.” Bestselling author Jennifer Weiner (Mrs. Everything and That Summer, among others) joins us on the show to take us behind the scenes of her newest novel, The Summer Placeand talk about love and loss, family and home, motherhood, money and much more with B&N’s Marie Cummings. And we end the show with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Book: 

The Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Marie Cummings and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (and occasional Saturdays)

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 12, 2022
Heather Walter on MISRULE
44:59

"…It's like if Tim Burton decorated Versailles for Halloween…” Heather Walter’s queer retelling of Sleeping Beauty kicked off with Malice, which we think of as more than just a remix to a familiar story—It's a complex, character-driven story with action, political intrigue, betrayal, and of course, a slow burn romance ... Heather’s closing out her Malice duology with Misrule, and she joins us on the show to talk about good vs. evil, why readers love morally grey characters, the fun she has writing her novels, what she’s reading and recommending now, what’s next (hint: Anne Boleyn) and much more with B&N’s Kat Sarfas. And we end the episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Misrule by Heather Walter

Malice by Heather Walter

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 10, 2022
Monica Ali on LOVE MARRIAGE
40:14

“For me, the novel form is the greatest expression because it has that room, that latitude to really explore for the full complexity of human existence and psychology and diversity, and there's no other single format that I think comes close, even with the amazing ways in which television drama has grown and become more complex and more satisfying, I still think that it's the novel form that did it first, and still does it best.”

Monica Ali made a splash with her Booker-nominated debut novel, Brick Lane — and she's back with a new novel, Love Marriage, a story of love and family and manners set in modern-day London. Monica joins us on the show to talk about her unforgettable characters, balancing comedy and tragedy, Jane Austen's influence, what screenwriting taught her about novel writing, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff featuring book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Love Marriage by Monica Ali

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 07, 2022
Hernan Diaz on TRUST
41:29

“And the title, of course, has this double meaning, the financial meaning of trust, and let's call it, emotional meaning of trust … To what extent can I trust this voice and the book, to a large extent is questioning the contracts we enter into as readers.” Hernan Diaz follows up his acclaimed debut novel, In the Distance (a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), with Trust, a stunning book-about-a-book, an exploration of capital and greed and the making of myths. Hernan joins us on the show to talk about how the stories of Great Men influenced his latest, bringing women back into the story of American business and capital, authenticity, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and other literary influences, why he writes, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the segment with a TBR Topoff segment featuring book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Trust by Hernan Diaz

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley  

            

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

May 05, 2022
Vaishnavi Patel on KAIKEYI
43:02

“I grew up hearing The Ramayana over lunch. My grandma would tell me little bits and pieces to me and my younger sister, she would tell us little bits and pieces every day. And we would ask to hear the same stories over and over again.” If you’re a fan of imaginative retellings like CirceAriadne and The Witch’s Heart, you don’t want to miss Vaishnavi Patel’s Kaikeyi. Vaishnavi joins us on the show to talk about the origins of her debut novel, her love of retellings and epic fantasy, what writing her first novel taught her about herself, balancing law school with writing fiction, Season 2 of Bridgerton and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end this episode with TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured books:

Kaikeyi by Vaishnavi Patel

The Ramayana

The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

 

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

May 03, 2022
Viola Davis on FINDING ME
41:05

“And so then, I felt like that's when I had to go back to the beginning of telling my story of sort of rediscovering the young Viola, who definitely may have been traumatized, but was pure.”

Multi-award-winning actress Viola Davis has poured herself into the characters she portrays on the big screen and on stage. And, now, in her most deeply personal and inspiring role yet, as author, she has released her memoir, Finding Me — out now.

Viola joins us on the show to talk about rediscovering the younger version of herself in order to write this book, the impact of Miss Cicely Tyson and August Wilson, the magic of artistry, the Black best friend role, the freedom and bravery that came with playing Annalise Keating, the connection between joy and peace and trauma, the radical act of forgiveness and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff featuring book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Finding Me by Viola Davis

Educated by Tara Westover

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls

Manchild in the Promised Land by Claude Brown

Native Son by Richard Wright

Black Boy by Richard Wright

A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

A History of God by Karen Armstrong

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 28, 2022
Bonnie Garmus on LESSONS IN CHEMISTRY
43:35

“And I think it's just overall her humanity and her recognition of what other people could accomplish. If you just say the right things, if you create the right chemistry, that really drove me to her. And she does—she has her own chemistry with everyone in the book.” That’s Bonnie Garmus talking about Elizabeth Zott, the unforgettable center of Bonnie’s debut novel, Lessons in Chemistry. Bonnie joins us on the show to talk about her spectacular characters, never giving up (and the writing advice that helped her the most when she was stuck), having empathy for all of her characters (even the evil ones), a most extraordinary dog, The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, rowing, what she’s reading now, how writing a novel is scarier than open water swimming, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff featuring book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus

On Animals by Susan Orlean

Rationality by Steven Pinker

The Friend by Sigrid Nunez

The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Moby-Dick by Herman Melville

The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 26, 2022
Margo Jefferson on CONSTRUCTING A NERVOUS SYSTEM
44:07

“I didn't want that more traditional kind of arc of childhood to a certain stance of wisdom or resignation or triumph. I wanted—partly because I felt with Negroland, and very much with this book—that ability to change persona, change my position, to acknowledge that one was performing at times, and that one played many, many roles … I wanted to be able to take in all of that, and a traditional memoir structure wasn't going to allow it.” Margo Jefferson is one of our most astute and elegant cultural critics, full stop. Winner of a Pulitzer Prize for criticism, she’s also the acclaimed author of several books, including her latest, Constructing a Nervous System. Margo joins us on the show to talk about finding a new language for criticism, engaging with art on her own terms, Bing Crosby and Ella Fitzgerald, investigating herself as a critic and a teacher, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with another set of TBR Topoff book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Constructing a Nervous System: A Memoir by Margo Jefferson

Negroland by Margo Jefferson

Song of the Lark by Willa Cather

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 23, 2022
Nghi Vo on THE CHOSEN AND THE BEAUTIFUL
45:04

“There's an intense pleasure in viewing the flaws of the people around you and saying, I'm not a part of that, even if maybe at the beginning you want to be or even maybe you still do, but you learn to come from where you stand. And that's part of what Jordan is doing. She's very comfortable in her discomfort…” Nghi Vo won the Hugo Award for Debut Novella with The Empress of Salt and Fortune, the first volume of her Singing Hills Cycle. Nghi’s remixed and remastered The Great Gatsby for her new paperback, The Chosen and the Beautiful, and she joins us on the show to talk about re-imagining an American classic with a layer of magic, taking Gatsby out of the male gaze and putting Jordan Baker in the center of everything, the art of Vietnamese paper cutting, interesting arc of her career (starting with the slush pile), her next novel, Siren Queen (based on the life of Anna May Wong) and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff featuring book recommendations from Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Empress of Salt and Fortune by Nghi Vo

Siren Queen by Nghi Vo

Pussy, King of the Pirates by Kathy Acker

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 21, 2022
Susan Cain on BITTERSWEET: HOW SORROW AND LONGING MAKE US WHOLE
46:09

“Leonard Cohen is like my all-time favorite musician … I, all my life, have had this reaction to sad music, of not feeling sad at all when I listened to it. Instead, what I feel is a kind of sense of uplift, and a sense of wonder and awe that a musician could take pain and turn it into beauty. And most of all, a kind of sense of connection with the musician and with all the other people who are listening to it. It's a kind of like beautiful acknowledgement that the state of being human involves loss and involves sorrow.” Susan Cain changed the way we think about introverts with her first bestseller, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, and now she’s going to change the way we approach some difficult feelings with Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole. Susan joins us on the show to talk about the thinkers and poets who influenced the new book, the veneer of effortless belonging, resolving her own grief, impermanence, collective creativity (and shifting our communal thinking), Susan David’s concept of Emotional Agility, how writing this book changed her and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole by Susan Cain

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

Gold by Rumi

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Apr 19, 2022
Douglas Stuart on YOUNG MUNGO
46:41

“I knew that after writing this sweeping family portrait that goes over about 40 years in the Bain family's history, that for my next novel, I wanted to write something that was very focused, that was quite propulsive, and quite edited in the scope and the time that we spend with the characters. And so, for me, it was about romance. It's about that love between these two young men.” Douglas Stuart has charmed more than a million and a half readers with his National Booker Award and Booker Prize-winning debut novel, Shuggie Bain. Douglas joins us on the show to talk about his incredible new novel, Young Mungo, optimism, writing about the working class and being gay, masculinity, love, mobility, Margaret Thatcher’s legacy, the importance of having a plan before you sit down to write, the writers who inspire him, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Young Mungo by Douglas Stuart

Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart

How Late It Was, How Late by James Kelman

Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy

Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy

 

Poured Over is hosted and produced by Miwa Messer. This episode was mixed by Chris Gillespie. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this show is available here.

Apr 16, 2022
Chloé Cooper Jones on EASY BEAUTY
50:28

“You know, beauty is such an interesting term. I think it's really important how vast and complex it is … we call people beautiful, I call my dog beautiful every day. I call food I eat beautiful, I call bitter, bitter coffee, beautiful, I call an idea beautiful. A mathematical concept can be beautiful, a sunset, the natural world, a performance, a song, certainly works of art, but … I've heard myself say, What a beautiful attempt, a failed attempt, but a beautiful or like a beautiful mistake, what a beautiful mistake that was, a beautiful error or a beautiful cutting remark even, so it's such an interesting term, because we can use it in so many ways.”

Easy Beauty is Chloé Cooper Jones’ first book, and it’s an incredibly smart and provocative combination of memoir, travel essay and philosophical treatise on beauty and our experience with beauty, and it’s out now. Chloé joins us on the show to talk about what beauty looks and feels like to her, how it feels to live in a body that people stare at (and touch without invitation), how we talk and think about disability, vulnerability and self-acceptance, and so much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Easy Beauty by Chloé Cooper Jones

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer. This episode was mixed by Chris Gillespie. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of the show is available here.

Apr 14, 2022
Sara Nović on TRUE BIZ
46:03

True Biz is an ASL idiom. It doesn't have one direct translation into English, but a few of the things that it could mean: seriously, literally. Real talk is one that I think gets used a lot. No kidding. Like, if someone says like, No, you made that upno true biz, you know, and I thought that it was a good title for the book, because it doesn't quite translate directly into English.” We’ve been fans of Sara Nović since her page-turning, coming-of-age debut, Girl at War. Sara’s back with a new novel, True Biz, which she calls both a “coming-of-age and a coming-of-middle-age” story set at a school for the Deaf. She joins us on the show to talk about CODA’s Oscars, Deaf culture and degrees of Deaf experience, punk rock, the fluidity of ASL and how best to represent it on the printed page, giving her Deaf characters agency and the space to be real teenagers, writing joy into her story and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

True Biz by Sara Nović

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer. This episode was mixed by Chris Gillespie. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 12, 2022
Grace D. Li on PORTRAIT OF A THIEF
44:50

“I really wrote it for me, I didn't think anything would come about — I wanted something that could bring me a bit of joy, where Asian American characters could live their lives and do something as fun and ridiculous as robbing art museums across the world.” Grace D. Li loves a caper flick, and now she’s written Portrait of a Thief, a caper novel with a very fun Chinese American cast. Grace joins us on the show to talk about the true story that inspired her debut, the Chinese diaspora, calling Texas home, the movies that inspired her fiction, the books she’s reading and recommending now, being a medical student who writes fiction on the side, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li

Chemistry by Weike Wang

Joan is OKAY by Weike Wang

The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka

Searching for Sylvie Lee by Jean Kwok

Fault Lines by Emily Itami

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 09, 2022
Jennifer Egan on THE CANDY HOUSE
53:43

"In the end, all the good ideas and sort of fancy craft approaches get you absolutely nothing if there's no emotional content. That's what it is. I mean, fiction is about going inside other people's minds and consciousnesses and looking through their eyes and living their lives in a way and that's all about emotions.” Jennifer Egan challenged the way many of us thought about how (but not why) we tell stories in A Visit from the Goon Squad—which went on to win the Pulitzer. She joins us on our 100th episode of the show to talk about her latest, The Candy House, which she describes as a “sibling novel” to Goon Squad, along with truth and time and space and memory and nostalgia, the interplay between tech and story (including finding poetry in elliptical, 140-character tweets), finding inspiration in slightly unexpected places like baseball and Dungeons + Dragons, returning to characters she never really left (including the peripheral ones), and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

The Candy House by Jennifer Egan

A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan

Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan

In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust

The Three Pigs by David Weisner

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton, introduction by Jennifer Egan

Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis

The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays) here and on your favorite podcast app.

A complete transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 07, 2022
Emily St. John Mandel on SEA OF TRANQUILITY
43:36

“I love being immersed in the grand project of a novel. When I was a kid, I was drawn to books about secret worlds, like The Secret Garden, or The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe where you disappear to the back of a wardrobe…”

How many times have you re-read Emily St. John Mandel’s genre-blending novels Station Eleven and The Glass Hotel? Emily joins us on the show to talk about her latest novel Sea of Tranquility — our April 2022 Barnes & Noble Book Club pick­ — along with what she loves most about writing, breaking the rules of time + space, how character development makes an imaginary world real, the writers and books who inspire her, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer. And we end the episode with a TBR Topoff segment featuring Margie and Marc.

 

Featured Books:

Sea of Tranquility by Emily St. John Mandel

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

The Singer’s Gun by Emily St. John Mandel

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Await Your Reply by Dan Chaon

The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu

The Executioner’s Song by Normal Mailer

Suite Francaise by Irene Nemirovsky

White Teeth by Zadie Smith

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

A full transcript of this episode is available here.

Apr 05, 2022
Viet Thanh Nguyen on THE COMMITTED
49:43

“…Cynical as he is of the world that he encounters, he's also pretty cynical and critical of himself. And that manifests itself in that sense of humor that you're talking about not a light-hearted sense of humor, but a very cynical and dark sense of humor, a sense of the absurd.” Viet Thanh Nguyen, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sympathizer and The Committed (now out in paperback), among other books, joins us on the show to riff on the return of his unnamed narrator, why he followed his prize-winning spy thriller with a crime novel set in 1980s Paris, how his novels are in conversation with Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man, the American canon, his literary inspirations and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

Native Speaker by Chang-rae Lee

American Spy by Lauren Wilkerson

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold by John Le Carré

The Land at the End of the World by António Lobo Antunes

Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

The Quiet American by Graham Greene

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us her for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

 

A full transcript of the show is available here.

Apr 02, 2022
Maud Newton on ANCESTOR TROUBLE
46:12

“As you might imagine, over the years, many people heard stories about my family. And they said, Hey, why don't you write a memoir? I really wasn't very interested in writing a memoir as I perceived a memoir to be, so the idea of spending years working on a book about the issues in my immediate family, which I grew up with, and was intimately familiar with, it felt like I would be locked in a closet with that somehow. And then I became sort of interested in looking backward...” Maud Newton used to believe her research into her family’s genealogy was just a distraction from the novel she’d been working on. Not so. Ancestor Trouble: A Reckoning and a Reconciliation is just out, and Maud joins us on the show to talk about where her curiosity took her, DNA sleuthing, facing her family’s legacies (genetic + historical + behavioral), epigenetics, what Harry Crews taught her about writing, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

Featured book: Ancestor Trouble: A Reckoning and a Reconciliation by Maud Newton

And a few of the books that Maud mentions in hers:

Where I Was From by Joan Didion

The Heartbeat of Wounded Knee by David Treuer

The Gene by Siddhartha Mukherjee

On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin

The Mismeasure of Man by Stephen Jay Gould

The Mistress’s Daughter by AM Homes

Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity and Love by Dani Shapiro

Touched with Fire by Kay Redfield Jamison

The Collected Schizophrenias by Esmé Weijun Wang

Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth by Sarah Smarsh

Searching for Zion: The Quest for Home in the African Diaspora by Emily Raboteau

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Poured Over is produced and hosted Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

 

Mar 31, 2022
Francesca May on WILD AND WICKED THINGS
44:21

“They're not all villains and all heroes, I think a lot of people are very morally gray…” The atmospheric and haunting Wild and Wicked Things is a beautifully written tale of queer love in an alternative post-WWI England that invokes the glittering world of Gatsby with a blend of blood magic and gothic mystique. Francesca May joins us on the show to talk about the appeal of The Great Gatsby, the power of community, the thin line between good and wicked, reinventing the ideals of class and privilege, spirit animals and so much more.

 

Featured in this episode:

Wild and Wicked Things by Francesca May

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier

The Lighthouse by Fran Dorricott

Rachel's Holiday by Marian Keyes

For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten

Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth

The Lord Of The Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien

Daughter of the Moon Goddess by Sue Lynn Tan

 

This episode of Poured Over was hosted and produced by Elani Wilson and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Mar 29, 2022
Jane McGonigal on IMAGINABLE: HOW TO SEE THE FUTURE COMING AND FEEL READY FOR ANYTHING — EVEN THINGS THAT SEEM IMPOSSIBLE TODAY
38:47

“We should call no future unthinkable and no future unimaginable. We have to be willing to think about the hard things and ready ourselves for them, we also have to free ourselves from the limitations of the present so that we can find refuge in the future that we want.” Futurist and game designer Jane McGonigal wants to help you change your brain with her new book, Imaginable: How to See the Future Coming and Feel Ready for Anything — Even Things That Seem Impossible Today, and she joins us on the show to talk about when the future starts, Dator’s Law (any useful statement about the future should at first seem ridiculous), normalcy bias, how our future selves are strangers to us, curiosity + empathy, mental time travel, the writers who inspire her, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured in this episode:

Imaginable: How to See the Future Coming and Feel Ready for Anything — Even Things That Seem Impossible Today by Jane McGonigal

Rebecca Solnit’s books

Emergent Strategy by Adrienne Maree Brown

Pleasure Activism by Adrienne Maree Brown

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays.)

Mar 24, 2022
John Cho on TROUBLEMAKER
37:15

“The original impulse to write a book for this age was knowing that this is a time of identity formation for me, curiosity about the outside world. And I guess I wanted to make an offering in that space … I just wanted to write a book with an Asian American protagonist. And I thought, how cool it would have been for me at that age to see that at the library.” Actor John Cho (SearchingBetter Luck TomorrowStar TrekHarold & Kumar Go to White Castle) steps into a new role, author, with the publication of Troublemaker, his first book for middle grade readers. John joins us on the show to talk about why he needed to write this book now (it wasn’t what he originally pitched to his editor); the legacy of 4/29 in the Korean American community and the murder of Latasha Harlins; his fondness for the Little House series; the elasticity of the English language (and not using italics to call out Korean words) and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

Troublemaker by John Cho

The Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder

IQ by Joe Ide

Your House Will Pay by Steph Cha

 

Poured Over is hosted and produced by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Mar 22, 2022
Peter Swanson on NINE LIVES
35:01

“My book starts in my brain with me telling myself a story. And I choose not to write it down, as I'm thinking about it. Sometimes for months, sometimes even maybe for a couple of years. My feeling is that if I stop thinking about it, or stop daydreaming about the story, then it's died a natural death in my brain and shouldn't make it to the page.” Nine strangers, one determined detective and plenty of devious ways to die; Peter Swanson’s latest whodunnit, Nine Lives, is a creepy, entertaining ride, and he joins us on the show to talk about Agatha Christie and Ruth Rendell and his other literary influences, Maine, trading poetry for crime fiction, and much more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

Nine Lives by Peter Swanson

Eight Perfect Murders by Peter Swanson

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Mar 17, 2022
NoViolet Bulawayo on GLORY
35:01

“And within that time, I realized that the story needed to be about regular citizens. But because so much had been written, I found myself needing a new way of telling the story, a story that was very public, that was on everybody's lips.” In 2017, Robert Mugabe was deposed in coup, an act that novelist NoViolet Bulawayo never thought she would see in her lifetime. She joins us on the show to talk about her fantastic new novel, Glory, the distance she needed to write a novel about the fall of a freedom fighter turned dictator and the chaos that followed, George Orwell’s Animal Farm and other literary influences, the power of story and social media, her faith in a new generation and hope for the future, and more with Poured Over's host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

Glory by NoViolet Bulawayo

We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo

Animal Farm by George Orwell

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang.Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Mar 15, 2022
Lee Kravetz on THE LAST CONFESSIONS OF SYLVIA P.
38:15

“The thing that really sort of blew me away, one of the reasons why we have sort of the type of poetry that we have today and the type of literature that we have today — it bloomed and was, I think, seeded in some ways by Sylvia Plath and her experience.” Lee Kravetz joins us on the show to talk about his unexpected and entertaining debut novel, The Last Confessions of Sylvia P., part literary mystery, part portrait of an immensely talented young woman and her impact on the world around her. Lee tells us about re-reading The Bell Jar, what he learned about poetry in order to write his new novel, the connection between confessional poetry of the 1960s and grunge music of the 1990s, the writers who’ve influenced him, and much more.

 

Featured books:

The Last Confessions of Sylvia P. by Lee Kravetz

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

Life Studies and For the Union Dead by Robert Lowell

The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon

Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays).

Mar 10, 2022
Hanif Abdurraqib on A LITTLE DEVIL IN AMERICA: NOTES IN PRAISE OF BLACK PERFORMANCE
37:18

“The book's title comes from Josephine Baker’s speech at the March on Washington … she was speaking to a crowd that was younger, and maybe did not know her from her heyday of performance. And she compels them to go and ask their parents and grandparents about her and the system, They'll tell you that I was a devil and they'll be right. I was a devil in other countries. And I was a little devil in America, too.” Hanif Abdurraqib ­— MacArthur genius grant recipient, National Book Award finalist and winner of a Carnegie Medal from the American Library Association — joins us on the show to talk about his latest book, A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance, which is dedicated to the iconic Josephine Baker and just out in paperback. Hanif riffs on what joy sounds like to him, magician Ellen Armstrong, the line between consumption and affection, what performance means for himself and others, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Books:

A Little Devil in America: Notes in Praise of Black Performance by Hanif Abdurraqib

A Fortune for Your Disaster by Hanif Abdurraqib

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays).

Mar 08, 2022
Jeff Yang, Phil Yu & Philip Wang on RISE: A POP HISTORY OF ASIAN AMERICA FROM THE 90s TO NOW
49:37

“…A big part of this book is to have a more whole picture of our history here. It is the last 30 years, 90s to now, but we do devote a big chunk of the before as well because we want to plant those roots and say This began a long time ago. Let's at least start this conversation where we acknowledge and have a more deep understanding of our history. It doesn't all end with this book either." Jeff Yang, Phil Yu, and Philip Wang join us on the show to talk about their fabulous, beautifully illustrated new book, Rise: A Pop History of Asian America from the 90s to Now, which covers all things—not just East—Asian American. Jeff, Phil and Philip riff on where we’re really from, things we love, what the words Asian American and representation really mean, Vincent Chin, Fresh Off the Boat and Crazy Rich Asians, Jeff and Phil’s podcast They Call Us Bruce, and more with Poured Over’s host, Miwa Messer.

 

Featured Book:

Rise: A Pop History of Asian America from the 90s to Now

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Mar 03, 2022
Olivie Blake on THE ATLAS SIX
34:44

“If you want to create art, and you want to create art the way you want to, and it's just for you, that's fine. But if you want to have a writing career, then my advice is...” Olivie Blake’s dark academic fantasy debut, The Atlas Six, has a cult following for a reason (believe the hype!) and she joins us on the show to talk about her character-driven epic (and which of her characters appeared first), her writing process and what she’s learned over time, her daydream playlists, what she’s reading and watching, and so much more.

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced and hosted by Kat Sarfas, and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays).

 

Featured Books:

The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake

Book of Night (Barnes & Noble Exclusive Edition) by Holly Black

Mar 01, 2022
Gal Beckerman on THE QUIET BEFORE: ON THE UNEXPECTED ORIGINS OF RADICAL IDEAS
43:35

“I'm writing about group creativity, which is not something we often do … what's interesting to me is what happens in the friction between people's minds through conversations, through discussion, through the exchange of ideas, through debate, through sort of egging one another on … bringing about any idea that's going to sort of undermine the nature of reality as we know it.” Gal Beckerman of The Atlantic joins us on the show to talk about his fascinating new book, The Quiet Before: On the Unexpected Origins of Radical Ideas, including the story behind the Ph.D. he earned in order to write it, how he found the people who drive his narrative from 17th-century France to present-day Minneapolis, how technology helps (or hurts) the exchange of ideas, and so much more.

 

Featured Books:

The Quiet Before: On the Unexpected Origins of Radical Ideas by Gal Beckerman

Parting the Waters: America in the King Years 1954-63 by Taylor Branch

Pillar of Fire: America in the King Years, 1963-65 by Taylor Branch

At Canaan’s Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-68 by Taylor Branch

King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa by Adam Hochschild

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

Feb 26, 2022
Julie Otsuka on THE SWIMMERS
47:10

“I sketched out some of these pool scenes a long, long time ago, maybe 15 years ago, but just you know, a few paragraphs. And then I don't know, I put them in a drawer somewhere...” It’s been 20 years since Julie Otsuka’s sublime debut, When the Emperor was Divine, almost 10 since the collective voice of The Buddha in the Attic. Julie’s third novel, The Swimmers, is just out, and she joins us on the show to talk about her elegant, witty and elegiac new book and its “soft beating heart,” the joy (and comedy) she found writing about this community, writing in pencil (and more of her creative process), silence and memory, and more.

 

Featured books:

The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka

When the Emperor was Divine by Julie Otsuka

The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka

The Nick Adams Stories by Ernest Hemingway

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway

Intimacies by Katie Kitamura

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

Feb 24, 2022
Debbie Millman on WHY DESIGN MATTERS
42:19

“It's a great question. And no one has ever asked me that question. I think it's taught me about how to construct the arc of a narrative.” We’ve learned so much from Debbie Millman and her fabulous interviews on her long-running podcast Design Matters. Since 2005, Debbie’s introduced us to incredible thinkers from a variety of disciplines, and now 55 of the more than 500 interviews she’s done are collected in a beautiful (and provocative) new book, Why Design Matters. Debbie joins us on the show to talk about what design has taught her about interviewing, how she never really planned to be a designer (and what changed), her research process, the stories we tell ourselves about images, what’s next for her, and much more.

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

Featured Book: Why Design Matters by Debbie Millman

Feb 22, 2022
Erik Larson on THE SPLENDID AND THE VILE
39:22

“Believe me, there probably was not a day that went by where I didn't say to myself, What on earth am I doing? And why did I take this on? Early on in the process, I was talking with a Churchill expert over breakfast in Washington, DC, and he was basically asking me, Why on earth are you doing this? And my answer to him, which stuck throughout the whole project, is that it's all in the telling.” The Splendid and the Vile spent most of 2020 and ‘21 on top of the bestseller charts, and it’s just out in paperback. Erik Larson joins us on the show to talk about the craft of writing, how his background in journalism prepared him for a career writing bestselling books, how he conducts his research, the fiction that inspires him, the surprises he uncovered while writing about one of the world’s most-documented men, and more.

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang.  Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

Featured books:          

The Splendid and the Vile by Erik Larson

Isaac’s Storm by Erik Larson

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

The Alienist by Caleb Carr

Feb 19, 2022
Marlon James on MOON WITCH, SPIDER KING
48:09

“There's a reason why all our old stories are fantastical and mythological, and why our fairy tales are so old. Because I think there is something in these mythologies and these folklore stories that tell us something about ourselves. And we've always done it, we've always put it into fantastical to explain the real.” Marlon James returns with Moon Witch, Spider King, the second installment of his Dark Star trilogy, and this time, Sogolon the witch is center stage. Marlon joins us on the show to talk about the reality behind fantasy and the fantasy behind reality, false starts, his fascination with court intrigue, WWBD? (What Would Boo Do?), handing the story over to his characters, his playlist and his podcast (Marlon and Jake Read Dead People), and more.

Featured books:

Moon Witch, Spider King by Marlon James

Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

Restoration by Rose Tremain

Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo

East of Eden by John Steinbeck

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang.  Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Feb 17, 2022
Sarah J. Maas on HOUSE OF SKY AND BREATH
45:19

“...It means the world to me to witness any kind of massive scale love of books.” Sarah J. Maas knows how to build worlds that readers never want to leave. The second installment of her fiery (and spicy) Crescent City series, House of Sky and Breath, is just out and Sarah joins us on the show to riff on #booktok, fandom, the screen adaptation she’s working on with Ron Moore, her love of Lord of the Rings and Jane Austen, her playlists, and more. 

Featured Books: 

House of Sky and Breath and House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

Twin Crowns by Catherine Doyle and Katherine Webber

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen

 

This episode of Poured Over was produced by Miwa Messer, hosted by Kat Sarfas, and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

Feb 15, 2022
Heather McGhee on THE SUM OF US
46:01

“I wrote The Sum of Us in the hopes that people would read it together, that people from all walks of life, different backgrounds, whether they're connected by something, a community, a school, a workplace, would pick it up and find for each person, a way into the story of America's troubled history with racism, and then a way out together.” Trained as a lawyer, and an expert in economic and social policy, Heather McGhee also excels at getting Americans to tell their stories — and look for solutions. Her urgent, important book, The Sum of Us is just out in paperback and she joins us on the show to talk about The Zero-Sum Hierarchy, The American Dream and other stories (and stereotypes) we tell ourselves, where we can go from here, the writers who inspire her, and more.

Featured Books: The Sum of Us by Heather McGhee

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with bonus episodes on occasional Saturdays).

Feb 12, 2022
Tara Westover on EDUCATED
45:07

“You know, when I wrote the book, I sort of thought it would resonate with a fairly narrow… I was writing it for people who are more or less like me, you know, little girls who grew up in junkyards and didn't go to school, and then going to college and everything changed.” Tara Westover’s memoir was a massive hit with readers everywhere when it was first published; four years later, Educated is out in paperback, and Tara joins us on the show to talk about choices and boundaries, family and home, how excited she is for new readers to come to the book in paperback, what’s next for her and much more.

Featured Books:

Educated by Tara Westover

Second Place by Rachel Cusk

Playing and Reality by D.W. Winnicott

Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert, translated by Lydia Davis.

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus eps on Saturdays).

 

Feb 10, 2022
Chuck Klosterman on THE NINETIES
44:56

“The Nineties were the last decade that we're ever going to talk about as a decade…” Chuck Klosterman has been challenging how we think, see and hear since his first book, Fargo Rock City, in 2001 to 2016’s But What If We're Wrong?: Thinking About the Present As If It Were the Past. He joins us on the show to talk about his new book, The Nineties, Gen X, the end of monoculture, the rise of independent moviemaking, The New Sincerity, Nevermind + Exile in Guyville and more.

 

Featured Books: The NinetiesFargo Rock City and Eating the Dinosaur, all by Chuck Klosterman.

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and mixed by Harry Liang.

 

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus eps on Saturdays).

Feb 08, 2022
Chang-rae Lee on MY YEAR ABROAD
35:33

“And fiction is all about obstacles. It's all about misapprehension, misunderstanding, lack of information, lack of connection, and the problems that come up, arise out of those things.” Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Chang-rae Lee’s most recent novel, My Year Abroad, is now out in paperback and it's unlike anything he’s written before. Chang-rae joins us on the show to talk about homecomings and hunger, the limitless imagination of a new generation of immigrants, his 20-year-old narrator and the sense of play at the heart of this new book, what’s on the syllabus for his Asian American autobiography class at Stanford, and much more.

 

Featured books: My Year Abroad, Native Speaker and Aloft, all by Chang-rae Lee.

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

 

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Feb 05, 2022
Lan Samantha Chang on THE FAMILY CHAO
40:52

“But I do feel like I was on a quest as a writer, for my work to get bigger. I just wanted it to contain a larger portion of the world than it started off with… I tried to make it large in its emotional scope, as well as in the amount of action that happens in it.” Lan Samantha Chang did, in fact, have as much fun writing our February 2022 B&N Book Club pick, The Family Chao, as we had reading it. She joins us on the show to talk about her post-immigrant novel, the brothers Chao themselves and the debt they owe to The Brothers Karamazov, wanting to throw away the rules of writing she'd been taught, Philip Roth’s fiction, a dog called Alf, and more. Featured Books: The Family Chao by Lan Samantha Chang and The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Feb 03, 2022
Dana Schwartz on ANATOMY: A LOVE STORY
48:09

“It's about people following their passions, and it's about falling in love for the first time whether that love is romantic, or with a professional industry.” Anatomy: A Love Story is everything Noble Blood’s creator and host Dana Schwartz loves in a story: spooky and fast-paced with a dash of romance, a perfect mix for the BN YA Book Club, and our pick for February ‘22. Dana joins us on the show to talk about her love of story and her creative process, finding her voice, the books that inspire her, explain the delights of reading historical fiction, and more.

 

Featured books:

Anatomy: A Love Story by Dana Schwartz

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

Little by Edward Carey

Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Feb 01, 2022
Wajahat Ali on GO BACK TO WHERE YOU COME FROM
36:51

“If you aren't writing your story in America, your story is being written for you. And if you're not telling your story, your story is being told to you….I was able to create my own superhero origin story when I was 10 years old.” Left-handed, lactose intolerant, wisecracking Wajahat Ali joins us on the show to talk about his first book, Go Back to Where You Came From, growing up brown and Muslim in the Bay Area, his parents’ time in jail, trading his law degree for the writer’s life, becoming a playwright with help from Ishmael Reed (and what Toni Morrison said to him after Ishmael Reed introduced them) and more in this very funny and fast-moving episode. Featured Book: Go Back to Where You Came From by Wajahat Ali. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

 

[1:40 PM] Miwa Messer

Elani/Chris - just fixed a typo (follow us not follow up)

 

Jan 29, 2022
Isabel Allende on VIOLETA
37:44

“I want my readers to be entertained. And if possible, to take a look at that period of that century that was so fascinating, a time of violence, and change, and great steps forward for humanity…” Isabel Allende’s epic new novel, Violeta, is out now, and she joins us on the show to talk about memory and history and justice, love and freedom and family, her creative process (and what the date January 8th means to her) and much more. Featured books: Violeta, A Long Petal of the SeaThe Soul of a Woman and The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.  Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Jan 27, 2022
Imani Perry on SOUTH TO AMERICA
38:13

"…I read every day. Reading feels like part of my identity…[it] feels essential as a writer to be reading always.” Imani Perry is the acclaimed author of Looking for Lorraine: The Radiant and Radical Life of Lorraine Hansberry and Breathe: A Letter to My Sons among other books; her latest, South to America, is an extraordinary blend of personal memoir and American history, and she joins us on the show to talk about her travels around the American South, the people she spoke with and the friendships she made, her own mother’s story, and the writers she holds close, including Kiese Laymon, Jesmyn Ward, Sarah M. Broom, and Richard Wright. Featured Books: South to America by Imani Perry, The Yellow House by Sarah Broome, and Native Son by Richard Wright. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Jan 25, 2022
John Darnielle on DEVIL HOUSE
42:34

“…Try reading it out loud. That's what I do. I read the whole book out loud, seven or eight times…four or five times… before it ever goes to edit. I believe that writing was made to be heard.” From the age of five, John Darnielle knew he was going to be a storyteller, and he joins us on the show to talk about the structure and the shifting perspectives of his new novel, Devil House, who has standing to tell a story, the difference between touring and performing as an author instead of a musician, the books he loved as a boy, why we should all be reading literature in translation and so much more. Featured Books: Devil House by John Darnielle, James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl, The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe and The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis, and No One is Talking About This by Patricia Lockwood. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays.)

Jan 22, 2022
Weike Wang on JOAN IS OKAY
35:26

“…So much of American media is, As long as we have each other, it doesn't matter what happens, we're going to be fine. I don't always think that's true. Circumstances can really tear families apart. But, you know, I'm not going to write Succession.” Weike Wang follows up her acclaimed debut novel, Chemistry, with the deadpan, darkly comic Joan is Okay. She joins us on the show to talk about how (and why) work becomes home for Joan, family and grief and William Faulkner, the horror of Mickey Rooney’s yellowface performance in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, and much more.  Featured books: Joan is Okay and Chemistry by Weike Wang, Convenience Store Woman by Sayata Murata, The Stranger by Albert Camus, As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner, Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe, and The Art of Revision by Peter Ho Davies. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Jan 20, 2022
Bernardine Evaristo on MANIFESTO: ON NEVER GIVING UP
38:01

“Well, this is the thing about being an overnight success after forty years.” Bernardine Evaristo made history when Girl, Woman, Other won the 2019 Booker Prize, for she is the first Black woman and the first Black British person to have won the coveted prize in its more than fifty-year history. Bernardine joins us on the show to talk about her fabulous memoir, Manifesto: On Never Giving Up, “overnight fame” (after decades of work in literature and the theater), her creative process, the writers who’ve inspired her work in the theater and on the page—and she even offers some advice for those who are stuck in their work and see no way through. Featured books: Manifesto: On Never Giving Up and Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo and For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow Is Enuf by Ntozake Shange. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Jan 18, 2022
Jami Attenberg on I CAME ALL THIS WAY TO MEET YOU: WRITING MY WAY HOME
35:32

“I think bookstores are really magical places, and not to be too idealistic about it, I really think that they're so important, they're cornerstones to communities, and they are treasures and we need to keep them alive.” Jami Attenberg, author of St. Mazie and The Middlesteins, among other novels, joins us on the show to talk about her first memoir, I Came All This Way to Meet You: Writing My Way Home, as well as the difference between loneliness and solitude, managing anxiety, her life as a writer, the books her book club has convinced her to read, her #1000wordsofsummer project, and more. (If writing a book is one of your goals for ’22, you don’t want to miss this episode.) Featured books: I Came All This Way to Meet You: Writing Myself Home, St. Maizie and The Middlesteins by Jami Attenberg, Mrs. Bridge by Evan S. Connell, the Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath and Intimacies by Katie Kitamura. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes on Saturdays).

Jan 15, 2022
Anna Malaika Tubbs on THE THREE MOTHERS
36:37

“This is not just for us to say, ‘How interesting’ now we know three more people, it's for us to say, ‘What can we do now that we know their stories?’" Anna Malaika Tubbs delves into the stories of Alberta King, Louise Little and Berdis Baldwin in our January Nonfiction Pick, The Three Mothers: How the Mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and James Baldwin Shaped a Nation. Anna joins us on the show to talk about the importance of reclaiming Black women’s stories, motherhood and the lives women lead before they have children, the moments of joy she found writing this book, and much more. Featured Books: The Three Mothers by Anna Malaika Tubbs, Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly, The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson, and In Search of Our Mother’s Gardens by Alice Walker. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episodes Saturdays.

Jan 13, 2022
Hanya Yanagihara on TO PARADISE
40:06

“And when you are lucky enough as a writer to have your book be found, and then have it be a source of someone's passion, someone who is not normally spoken to by the book publishing industry, who then with generosity and real passion, finds a way to tell other people about it, you cannot get luckier than that.” Hanya Yanagihara’s second novel, A Little Life was already a word-of-mouth must read, a finalist for the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Award and winner of the Kirkus Prize when #Booktok introduced Jude & Co. to a new set of readers and kicked the book’s sales into the stratosphere. Hanya’s following up her massive hit with To Paradise, a story of love and ambition, loneliness and freedom, that cuts across time and reimagined Americas. Hanya joins us on the show to talk about Hawaii and New York, her admiration for the novels of Kazuo Ishiguro, what paradise means for her characters, the helix of history, and more. Featured Books: To Paradise and A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara, The Remains of the Day and Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro, The Hours by Michael Cunningham, and Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus eps on Saturdays).

Jan 11, 2022
Xochitl Gonzalez on OLGA DIES DREAMING
35:23

“You know, there's something that we don't talk about, which I think is like the underside of success and ambition, which is that for every step that we take towards something, it's a step away from something. And the more that we have these rarefied experiences, the more isolating they can be…” Olga Dies Dreaming is one of 2022’s most anticipated debuts and our January Discover pick; Xochitl Gonzales joins us on the show to talk about her fabulous new novel and unforgettable protagonist, what it means to be part of a community (or leave one behind), heading to the Iowa Writers Workshop and earning an MFA in her forties, the books and writers who inspire her, and more. Featured books: Olga Dies Dreaming by Xochitl Gonzales, The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, The World According to Garp by John Irving, and Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus episode Saturdays).

 

New episodes of Poured Over land Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus eps on Saturdays) on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and wherever you listen to podcasts.

Jan 08, 2022
Jessamine Chan on THE SCHOOL FOR GOOD MOTHERS
34:51

“One thing that I was interested in doing is making literal the surveillance that parents feel every day, because there is the sense that you're being watched and judged and shamed all the time.” Jessamine Chan joins us on the show to talk about her debut novel, The School for Good Mothers (think The Handmaid’s Tale meets Klara and the Sun), writing a Chinese American main character that she wanted to read, making sure her satire is laced with humor, how a self-proclaimed Luddite came to write a book like this one, and more. Featured Books: The School for Good Mothers by Jessamine Chan, Plainwater by Anne Carson, Karate Chop by Dorothe Nors, Mrs. Caliban by Rachel Ingalls, Orange World and Other Stories by Karen Russell, The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith, Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado and How to Write an Autobiographical Novel by Alexander Chee. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (with occasional bonus eps Saturday).

Jan 06, 2022
Noah Hawley on ANTHEM
35:56

“I describe it as a fantasy novel about the real world we live in, or a realistic novel about the fantasy world we live in.” Anthem is Noah Hawley’s terrific, page-turning sixth novel, and his first after his Edgar Award-winning bestseller, Before The Fall—it’s also our January 2022 Barnes & Noble Book Club pick. Noah joins us on the show for a wide-ranging, spoiler-free conversation about breaking the fourth wall, the death of satire, how we can use fiction to help us make sense of a nonsensical world (even when our brains are working overtime “to maintain the illusion we believe in.”), writing for the screen vs. writing for the page, and more, including the ways Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings inspired Anthem. Featured books: Anthem by Noah Hawley, Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut, Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera, Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison, The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides, White Noise by Don DeLillo, and One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

 

Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays (and occasional bonus eps on Saturdays).

Jan 04, 2022
Poured Over: David Mitchell and Aleksandar Hemon From Page to Screen
37:35

“And so we wouldn't be here without Natalie Portman, which isn't a sentence I was expecting to say this evening. But if you ever watched this, Natalie, thank you. Really thank you.” That’s novelist and screenwriter David Mitchell explaining the genesis of his friendships and working relationships with Lana Wachowski and Aleksandar Hemon—which includes screenplay credits on Sense8 and now, The Matrix Resurrections. David and Aleksandar join us on the show to talk about creativity and collaboration, their writing partnership, how language changes from page to screen, envisioning the future, and much more. Featured books: Cloud AtlasUtopia AvenueThe Bone Clocks and Black Swan Green by David Mitchell and My Parents: An Introduction/This Does Not Belong to YouLove & Obstacles and The Lazarus Man by Aleksandar Hemon. Poured Over is produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. (P.S. We’re taking a little break for the rest of this year and returning with a new episode on 1/4/22.)

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Dec 16, 2021
Mary Beard on TWELVE CAESARS
42:36

“And imagine what did it feel like to think this was new? Their life, all kinds of different images as time goes on, and people in the Renaissance and later want to recreate for themselves, particularly in painting, but not always in painting….what it is to create a likeness of someone who's been dead for a millennium or more?” Historian and bestselling author Mary Beard (SPQR, Women & Power, Confronting the Classics) joins us on the show to talk about her new book, Twelve Caesars, what it means to make a likeness if you’ve never met your subject, power and representation and propaganda, trying to help us see under-appreciated museum displays (tapestries and coins to start) with fresh eyes, and more. Featured book: Twelve Caesars by Mary Beard. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Dec 14, 2021
Juhea Kim on BEASTS OF A LITTLE LAND
35:50

“I went running in Fort Tryon Park in the northern reaches of Manhattan. And it was snowing. And during that run, I had this vision of a hunter lost in the snow…” Beasts of a Little Land is a remarkable debut novel about love and redemption, covering five tumultuous decades of Korean history. Juhea Kim joins us on the show to talk about writing and rewriting an epic novel with a large cast of characters, caring for her antagonists, Anna Karenina and more. Featured books: Beasts of a Little Land by Juhea Kim and Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Dec 09, 2021
Michelle Zauner on CRYING IN H-MART
37:57

“But at the end of the day, so many people have lost a loved one. This story is about mothers and daughters. It's about parents and children. It's about a different culture and relating to it. It's about food. It's about grief. It's about loss. It's about family.” Two-time GRAMMY nominee Michelle Zauner joins us on the show to talk about her bestselling memoir Crying in H-Mart, one of the finalists for our B&N Book of the Year, as well as her literary influences, what she leaned about her mom (and herself), how rewrites helped her in unexpected ways, and more. Featured books: Crying in H-Mart by Michelle Zauner, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys, and Wild by Cheryl Strayed. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Dec 07, 2021
Rachel Smythe on LORE OLYMPUS
36:09

“Making connections with people has often been quite difficult for me, you know, this can be really isolating, but it's so incredible to make this book that so many people are interested in reading and enjoying, and they look at it, and they're like, Oh, this feels really relatable.” More than 5.4 million people follow Rachel Smythe’s Lore Olympus on Webtoons, and now she’s adapted the first 25 chapters of her retelling of the myth of Persephone into a fabulous book. Rachel joins us on the show to talk about the inspiration behind her relatable story and unforgettable art; her favorite books and writers, including The Odyssey translated by Emily Wilson, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett; color theory and the joys of brainstorming, and more. (She even shares a little advice for comics creators at the start of their career.) Produces/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Dec 02, 2021
Brené Brown on ATLAS OF THE HEART
38:02

"We're going to have to learn to be cartographers in our own lives." Brené Brown is the author of five number one New York Times bestsellers, including Dare to LeadDaring Greatly, and Rising Strong; co-editor with Tarana Burke of You Are Your Best Thing; The host of two podcasts, Unlocking Us and Dare to Lead. Her Netflix documentary, The Call to Courage, is a huge hit—and her 2010 TED talk, The Power of Vulnerability, the one that launched her career as we know it, it is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world. Brené joins us on the show to talk about her new book, Atlas of the Heart, including how language shapes how we feel, how to become great story stewards for ourselves and others, plus nostalgia, hopefulness, and more. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Nov 30, 2021
Louise Penny on THE MADNESS OF CROWDS
21:21

“I'm constantly surprised by the books. Because I think about books a lot before I start writing them, I don't write structure and a formal outline. But I carry a notebook around with me for about a year before I start writing and I write down quotes and thoughts and ideas and snippets of overheard conversations and things from the newspaper…some of them are used later and some just are never used, but eventually a pattern forms and that becomes then the idea for the book…” Who hasn’t thought of moving to Three Pines after reading one of Louise Penny’s Chief Inspector Armand Gamache novels? Louise joins us on the show to talk about the story behind the 17th book in the series, The Madness of Crowds, choosing kindness, the evolution of Gamache, Agatha Christie’s relationship to Poirot, and more. Featured book: The Madness of Crowds by Louise Penny. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 23, 2021
Jung Yun on O BEAUTIFUL
37:49

“…And I had arrived at McDowell, with about 200 pages in the summer of 2018…And the great thing about these writing retreats is that they give you a chance to do nothing but just think about your work. And that was a real gift to me, because it was both time and peace and quiet, to just think about this book. And to be really honest with myself about what was doing well and what it wasn't doing well at all….” Jung Yun had our attention from the very first page of her debut novel, Shelter, and we’ve been waiting for her terrific new novel, O Beautiful, set during the North Dakota oil boom. Jung joins us on the show to talk about The American Dream, shame (and hope), when it’s time to scrap a draft that just isn’t working, and more. Featured books: O Beautiful and Shelter by Jun Yung.

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Nov 20, 2021
T.J. Klune on UNDER THE WHISPERING DOOR
58:12

“I love bookstores, with all of my heart for everything that they've done for me and my stories, but it is the booksellers that are at the front putting these books into the hands of readers, so they do absolutely deserve a majority, if not all of the credit.”  Our booksellers will be the first to tell you that T.J. Klune writes charming, heartfelt must-reads—The House on the Cerulean Sea was one of our favorite Monthly Picks this year—and his newest book, Under the Whispering Door is our Speculative Fiction Book of the Year! T.J. joins us on the show to talk about his extraordinary world-building, being honest about grief, Buddy Holly, and more. Featured Books: The House on Cerulean Sea and Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune and Light From Uncommon Stars by Ryka Aoki. Allyson Gavaletz guest hosts this episode, which was produced by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 18, 2021
Nikole Hannah-Jones on THE 1619 PROJECT
40:35

“But we all want to see ourselves in a story of our country. And we call this a new origin story, not the origin story for reason. There are many origin stories; every person wants to feel a part of the narrative of our country.” Nikole Hannah-Jones is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist, a recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship (a.k.a. The Genius Grant), the Knight Chair in Race and Journalism at Howard University, and the driving force behind the revelatory, necessary 1619 Project. She joins us on the show to talk about the evolution of The 1619 Project from The New York Times magazine to book form; the book’s extraordinary contributors, a veritable who’s who of historians, poets, novelists, cultural critics, filmmakers, activists, playwrights, academics, and journalists; the conversations we can’t have on Twitter, and more. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Nov 16, 2021
Natashia Deon on THE PERISHING
30:41

“I don't remember my dreams a lot. But when I remember them, I stand up and pay attention.” Both of Natashia Deon’s novels, NAACP Image Award nominee Grace, and her latest, The Perishing, started with dreams she couldn’t forget. Natashia joins us on the show to talk about her new novel—think N.K. Jemisin and Octavia Butler—1930s Los Angeles, love and justice, life and death, what it means to truly live in the present moment and more. Featured books: The Perishing and Grace by Natashia Deon. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Nov 11, 2021
Louise Erdrich on THE SENTENCE
40:01

“I'd always wanted to write a ghost story. And I always wanted to write about what it was like to be haunted, because I feel that so many of us are.” Louise Erdrich’s new novel, The Sentence—her first after The Night Watchman, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction—is a funny, big-hearted and profound story of second chances and ghosts, books and bookselling, and the messy love between spouses and parents and children. Louise joins us on the show to talk about hauntings, perfect short novels, the joys of bookselling, the power of names and more. Featured books: The Sentence by Louise Erdrich and Euphoria by Lily King. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 09, 2021
Neal Shusterman & Jarrod Shusterman on ROXY
36:43

“One of the comments that I've often gotten from parents who say, my son read Scythe, or my daughter read, Unwind, and made me read it, because they wanted to talk to me about it. And then we discussed it. And then the parent would say, I never knew my kid thought that deeply. You know, I think when we write things that ask the reader to rise to the level of the writing, and the level of the ideas behind the writing, they will do it, and they will appreciate not being talked down to.” Acclaimed, prize-winning author Neal Shusterman continues to thrill readers of all ages with his series books like Scythe and Unwind, and standalones. He’s co-written his latest novel, Roxy, with his son, Jarrod Shusterman, and they join us on the show to talk about collaborating with family, connecting with their readers through story, creating unforgettable characters and more. Featured book: Roxy by Neal Shusterman and Jarrod Shusterman. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 06, 2021
Kal Penn on YOU CAN'T BE SERIOUS
35:01

“I wanted to tell my story in a way that made you feel like you were having a beer with me. And…even though I delve into things like identity and politics and family history and things that things that I'm really excited to share with everybody, I want it to be accessible to people who might disagree with me or might not have experience with the things that I have experiences with.” From the Hollywood to the White House, Kal Penn’s careers have been anything but boring; he’s just published a very funny and honest memoir called You Can’t Be Serious, which covers the work and the people he loves and the lessons he’s learned. He joins us on the show to talk about growing up South Asian, stereotyping and that accent, Jhumpa Lahiri’s fiction and more. Featured books: You Can’t Be Serious by Kal Penn and Interpreter of Maladies and The Namesake, both by Jhumpa Lahiri. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 04, 2021
Gary Shteyngart on OUR COUNTRY FRIENDS
43:39

“I'm here to have a dialogue with a person. And if I'm just gonna sit there and look down at my lap, well, speaking profoundly into my lap. That's not enough for me, I need to speak out--and entertain.” Gary Shteyngart’s new novel, Our Country Friends, is our November B&N Book Club pick, and it’s a charming (and provocative) story of friendship and the family we make. Gary joins us on the show to talk about how friendships evolve (or don’t), societal scorecards and lost paradises, why he wrote a memoir in his late thirties, the writers who’ve influenced him, from Chekhov to Chang-rae Lee, and more. Featured books: Our Country FriendsThe Russian Debutante’s HandbookAbsurdistan and Little Failure by Gary Shteyngart. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Nov 02, 2021
Drew Magary on THE NIGHT THE LIGHTS WENT OUT
42:28

“And so, what was to me a relatively — at least in terms of storytelling — a tidy story of me collapsing and having my wife and my co-workers save my life and be getting up and getting out of the hospital and getting to write again, was a bit more involved than that.” In his new book, The Night the Lights Went OutDefector columnist Drew Magary delivers a darkly comic and deeply honest story about his recovery from the traumatic brain injury that almost killed him. Drew joins us on the show to talk about what happened the night he almost died, what came later (including his deafness and cochlear implant), why he writes (and what he learned self-publishing a novel), the books and writers he loves to read, and more. Featured book: The Night the Lights Went Out by Drew Magary. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 28, 2021
Alice Hoffman on THE BOOK OF MAGIC
34:37

"And I had a great, great professor named Albert Guerard when I was starting out, and he said to me, 'Some people will tell you to write what you know. But I'm going to tell you write what you can imagine.' And that was such a gift." Words are magic (and truth and love and power) in Alice Hoffman's newest novel, The Book of Magic. It's the fourth in a series that started with Practical Magic in 1995, and features three generations of the fabulous (and sometimes prickly) Owens family, as it cuts between Essex, Massachusetts and Essex, England. The Book of Magic delivers a truly satisfying, emotional read about familial love, and Alice Hoffman joins us on the show for a spoiler-free conversation about turning a beloved stand-alone novel into a series, writing about sisters and mothers, her favorite books of all time, Amelia Bassano (and those rumors), and more. Featured books: The Book of Magic, The Rules of Magic, Magic Lessons, Practical Magic, The Dove Keepers and The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte, Frankenstein by Mary Shelly and Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

Oct 26, 2021
Joshua Ferris on A CALLING FOR CHARLIE BARNES
32:28

“I love it, when, as a reader, I am surprised by the way people behave, you know that you're aghast and shocked and standing back a little bit. And I love it even more when I'm writing it, when I have tapped into a sense that I'm not in control of this guy, either.” We’ve been fans of Joshua Ferris since his very funny and acclaimed 2007 debut, Then We Came to the End — and he had us howling with laughter as we read his latest, A Calling for Charlie Barnes. Joshua joins us on the show to talk about second chances and whether or not people can change, family mythology, writing comedy without losing sight of his characters, and more.

Featured books: A Calling for Charlie Barnes and Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris and To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf.

Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. 

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 21, 2021
Elizabeth Strout on OH WILLIAM!
44:34

“I'm so interested in people. I have been fascinated by people since I was just my first memory. I just think people are, for me, they are the most interesting things in the world.” No one captures the nuances of complicated lives quite like Elizabeth Strout, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author who likes to return to her characters and their communities in sometimes surprising ways, as she does in her new novel, Oh William! Elizabeth joins us on the show to talk about the world of Lucy Barton and her first husband William, writing with her readers in mind and reading with an open heart, William Trevor’s short stories and more. Featured books: Oh William!My Name is Lucy Barton and Anything is Possible by Elizabeth Strout. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 19, 2021
Andrea Elliott on INVISIBLE CHILD
42:12

“Because for every kid who makes it out, there are thousands more who are just as capable, who don't. And I think we need to shift the conversation away from what was it that helped that one kid make it out to why are all these other kids not?” Andrea Elliott’s Invisible Child belongs on the shelf next to Evicted by Matthew Desmond and Alex Kotlowitz’s books There are No Children Here and An American Summer. She joins us on the show to talk about eleven-year-old Dasani and her family, how systems feed the poverty cycle, why we need to challenge our love of success stories, and more. Featured book: Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival and Hope in an American City. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 14, 2021
Nick Offerman on WHERE THE DEER AND THE ANTELOPE PLAY
24:54

“I'm so grateful to be part of the world of books. And that's what makes me work so hard on them because it's possibly the greatest privilege I've been afforded.” Nick Offerman’s fifth book, Where the Deer and the Antelope Play, is charming, earnest and a little pointed, and, of course, very funny. It opens with Nick gallivanting in Glacier National Park with pals George Saunders and Jeff Tweedy, sees him repairing a stone wall and buying a livestock with his buddy James Rebanks, and roadtripping with his wife, Megan Mullally and her excellent audiobook recommendations. Nick joins us on the show to talk about how the fun’s really an excuse to ask big questions about our place in the wider world, offer some thoughts on where we need to go and some nuanced ideas for how we might get there, and more. Featured titles: Where the Deer and the Antelope Play by Nick Offerman, Sharks in the Time of Saviors by Kawaii Strong Washburn and Leaving Isn’t the Hardest Thing by Lauren Hough. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 12, 2021
Beth Macy on DOPESICK
26:26

America’s opioid crisis shows no signs of slowing down, and if you want to know how we got where we are, Beth Macy’s 2018 bestseller Dopesick is coming to Hulu as a limited series on October 13th, produced by Danny Strong (Game Change and Recall), Warren Littlefield (The Handmaid’s Tale), director Barry Levinson, actor Michael Keaton and Beth herself, among others. Beth joins us on the show to talk about the screen adaptation of her powerful book—and what she learned writing for the screen for the first time—how the community she’s covered is responding, and more, including a sneak peak of her next book, Raising Lazarus: Hope and Justice in the Future of America’s Overdose Crisis. Featured books: Dopesick by Beth Macy, Empire of Pain by Patrick Radden Keefe, The Urge: Our History of Addiction by Carl Erik Fisher and Unsettled: How the Purdue Pharma Bankruptcy Failed the Victims of the American Overdose Crisis by Ryan Hampton. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 09, 2021
Alix E. Harrow on THE ONCE AND FUTURE WITCHES
33:19

“Suffragettes, but witches.” That was the three-word pitch that Alix E. Harrow used to sell her very fun and very smart second novel, The Once and Future Witches, our newest Monthly Speculative Fiction pick. Alix joins us on the show to talk about portal fantasy, our fascination with fairy tales (and why we keep returning to them), being a messy reader and more. Featured books: The Once and Future Witches, The Ten Thousand Doors of January and A Spindle Splintered, all by Alix Harrow, Ammonite and Spear by Nicola Griffith, and Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 07, 2021
Naomi Novik on THE LAST GRADUATE
39:24

“One of the ways you make magic work is by believing it’s going to work.” Readers love Naomi Novik’s series set at the mysterious (and deadly) Scholomance. Volume two, The Last Graduate, has just landed, and our favorite prickly heroine Galadriel (El) is back, along with her gang of friends, and, of course, Orion Lake, who El might just hate a little less these days. Naomi Novik joins on the show for a spoiler-free conversation about worldbuilding, El’s evolution, Ursula Leguin’s story The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas, and more. Featured books: The Last Graduate and A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik. Produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 05, 2021
Wiley Cash on WHEN GHOSTS COME HOME
39:19

“You never know what’s going to happen in a bookstore.” Wiley Cash joins us on the show to talk about the story about a too-big aircraft and a too-short runway that inspired his new novel, When Ghosts Come Home; tell us why he had to set the book in the 1980s; and how excited he is by the current rise of the Rural South in literary fiction. He also delivers a couple of reading lists you’ll want to add to your TBR pile now. Featured books: When Ghosts Come Home by Wiley Cash, Razorblade Tears and Blacktop Wasteland by S.A. Cosby, Hell of a Book by Jason Mott, Aftershocks by Nadia Owasu, and Writers and Lovers by Lily King. Produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes ever Tuesday and Thursday.

Oct 02, 2021
Phoebe Robinson on PLEASE DON'T SIT ON MY BED IN YOUR OUTSIDE CLOTHES
37:57

“I was honing my writing voice before anyone knew anything or cared about me as a writer.” Phoebe Robinson’s a force of nature with her standup shows, podcasts, TV shows and books. And now she’s adding publisher to her list of accomplishments with her new imprint, Tiny Reparations Books. Phoebe joins us on the show to talk about her newest book, Please Don’t Sit on My Bed in Your Outside Clothes, her new imprint and the incredible debut authors she’s publishing, black hair, performative allyship and more. Featured books: Please Don’t Sit on My Bed in Your Outside Clothes by Phoebe Robinson, What the Fireflies Knew by Kai Harris, Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li, Queenie by Candace Carty-Williams, Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid and Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson. Produced/Hosted by Elani Wilson and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 30, 2021
Anthony Doerr on CLOUD CUCKOO LAND
43:48

“But if you say today, I'm just working on this little monologue by this one character, you can trick yourself into making something bigger…” Anthony Doerr joins us on the show to talk about his epic new novel-about-everything, Cloud Cuckoo Land, his first since his Pulitzer Prize-winning All the Light We Cannot See. Featured books: Cloud Cuckoo Land , All the Light We Cannot Seeand Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr, The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros, Platero and I by Juan Ramón Jiménez, and Annals of the Formal World by John McPhee. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 28, 2021
Ruth Ozeki on THE BOOK OF FORM AND EMPTINESS
34:11

Ruth Ozeki’s new novel, The Book of Form and Emptiness, is a beautiful story about books and libraries, life and love. Ruth joins us on the show for a lively conversation about hearing voices, the connections between her last bestseller A Tale for the Time Being, and her latest, the relationship between her writing practice and her meditation practice, her very funny debut novel My Year of Meats, and more. Featured books: The Book of Form and Emptiness, A Tale for the Time Being, My Year of Meats, and The Face, all by Ruth Ozeki.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 25, 2021
Brendan Kiely on THE OTHER TALK
41:47

Brendan Kiely’s an award-winning author of YA fiction, including All-American Boys, which he co-wrote with Jason Reynolds. His fifth book is a bit of a departure for him; The Other Talk: Reckoning with Our White Privilege is a nonfiction book that asks us to consider where we are in the world today and how we start and sustain necessary conversations about race and whiteness with young people and ourselves. Brendan joins us on the show to talk about his own experience growing up white in a Boston suburb, his days as a teacher, and what he’s learned from talking with and listening  to students from middle school through college. Featured books: The Other Talk by Brendan Kiely, All-American Boys by Brendan Kiely and Jason Reynolds. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 23, 2021
Richard Powers on BEWILDERMENT
44:27

Richard Powers is the author of 13 novels, including The Overstory, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. His new novel, Bewilderment, shortlisted for The Booker Prize and longlisted for the National Book Award for Fiction, is an intimate story of two lost boys—father and son—and it’s a bit of a departure from his earlier books. Richard joins us on the show for a charming conversation about where the title came from, why he used a first-person narrative for this book, the connection between writing fiction and computer code, writing about grief, and more. Produces/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 21, 2021
Mary Roach on FUZZ
35:40
We've seen what death and dying do to the human body and we've investigated the afterlife thanks to Mary Roach. We've gone to space and to war with her. We've learned more than a little about taste and our digestive tracts, and, well, bonking--all thanks to Mary and her very, very funny books, her seventh book Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law has just landed. And as with all of her earlier books, we're pretty sure like us, you're going to feel smarter after you've read it. Mary joins us on the show to talk about her new book and more. Featured books: Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law by Mary Roach Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.
 
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Sep 16, 2021
Colson Whitehead on THE HARLEM SHUFFLE
27:31

Two Pulitzers, a National Book Award, and a MacArthur Genius Grant: Colson Whitehead is one of the greatest novelists working today. From The Intuitionist to The Underground Railroad and The Nickel Boys, his incredible body of work is driven by sharp insight and brilliant sentences. Harlem Shuffle is his newest novel, a character study, a caper flick, and an absolute thrill to read. Colson joins us on the show to talk about his love of 1970s heist flicks, walking aimlessly around Harlem, messy internet searches, and more. Featured Books: Harlem Shuffle and The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead, Richard Stark’s Parker novels, and The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Sep 14, 2021
Qian Julie Wang on BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY
37:47

Qian Julie Wang’s unforgettable memoir, Beautiful Country, belongs on the shelf next to modern classics like Educated by Tara Westover, When I Was Puerto Rican by Esmeralda Santiago, The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls and Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi. Qian Julie joins us on the show to talk about capturing the universality of childhood (no matter how difficult the details), facing down shame in order to tell the truth and more. Featured books: Beautiful Country by Qian Julie Wang, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou, Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt, Minor Feelings by Cathy Park Hong, Detransition Baby by Torrey Peters and Middlemarch by George Elliott. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

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Sep 12, 2021
Joy Harjo on POET WARRIOR
31:32

“My ears were bent for stories.” Poet Warrior is the indelible new memoir by Joy Harjo, Poet Laureate of the United States. Joy joins us on the show to talk about her family’s stories, making music, Emily Dickinson’s poetry, how reading work out loud helps with the editing process, and more. Featured Books: Poet Warrior and An American Sunrise by Joy Harjo.

Produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Folow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 09, 2021
Lauren Groff on MATRIX
30:24

A new book from Lauren Groff is always a hit with us, from her early novels, The Monsters of Templeton and Arcadia, to her massive 2015 bestseller, Fates and Furies, and her story collections, Delicate Edible Birds and Florida. We can’t get enough of her gorgeous sentences, evocative details, and the worlds she conjures. We’ll follow Lauren anywhere, and now that includes a 12th Century Abbey; her fabulous new novel, Matrix, is out today, and it’s our September Barnes & Noble Book Club selection. Lauren joins us on the show to talk about how the past and present collide in Matrix, her love of research, the joy of reading, and more. Featured books: Matrix by Lauren Groff, Mariette in Ecstasy by Ron Hansen, Middlemarch by George Elliott and Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. Featured poets and writers: Emily Dickinson, Anne Carson, James Salter, Dennis Johnson, Grace Paley and Alice Munro. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Sep 07, 2021
B.B. Alston on AMARI AND THE NIGHT BROTHERS
50:12

We love B.B. Alston and his Supernatural Investigation series—his debut novel for Middle Readers, Amari and the Night Brothers, is the Overall Winner of the Barnes & Noble Children’s and YA Book Awards—and the second book in the series is due in 2022. B.B. joins us on the show to talk about writing for children (and how to bring reluctant readers around to the sheer joy of books and reading); the writers who made him want to be a reader (and a writer); and more. Featured books: Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, The Night Circus by Erin Morganstern, and Black Boy Joy, edited by Kwame Mbalia. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and sound mix by Emily Hiott.

 Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Sep 02, 2021
Min Jin Lee on THE GREAT GATSBY
28:09
Love it or hate it (and there really seems to be no middle ground), The Great Gatsby still speaks volumes about us, our society, and the American Dream. Min Jin Lee, the acclaimed author of Pachinko and Free Food for Millionaires, has a written an introduction for this classic, and she joins us on the show to talk about Fitzgerald’s characters, what the novel means to her, and more. Featured books: The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald, with an introduction by Min Jin Lee, and Free Food for Millionaires by Min Jin Lee. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer, sound mix by Emily Hiott.
 
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Aug 31, 2021
Linden Lewis on THE SECOND REBEL
37:23

A fun, spoiler-free conversation with Linden Lewis about her fabulous new novel The Second Rebel, the sequel to The First Sister, our first Speculative Fiction Monthly Pick. Linden joins us on the show to talk about Space Opera, world-building, scrapping full first drafts, giving yourself permission to write what you want to write, and more.


Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Featured Books: The Second Rebel and The First Sister by Linden Lewis, Red Rising by Pierce Brown, The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang, The Handmaid’s Tale and Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes drop every Tuesday and Thursday.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Aug 26, 2021
Kat Chow on SEEING GHOSTS
33:50
Grief, trauma and tragedy run through Kat Chow’s family tree, with everything coming together in 1980s Connecticut. Kat joins us on the show to talk about death and grief, ghosts and survival and debt, what it was like to report her own family’s story, taxidermy as metaphor, and more.
Featured books: Seeing Ghosts by Kat Chow and Wave by Sonali Deraniyagala. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.


Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Aug 24, 2021
Miranda Cowley Heller on THE PAPER PALACE
37:08

If you were offered a life-changing do-over, would you take it? That’s the central question at the heart of Miranda Cowley Heller’s stunning debut novel, The Paper Palace. Miranda joins us on the show to talk about impossible choices, her love of Jane Austen, getting out of your own way, what poetry taught her about writing prose, and more. Featured books: The Paper Palace by Miranda Cowley Heller, Light Years by James Salter and 99 Stories of God by Joy Williams. Featured poets: Dorianne Laux, Sharon Olds, James Wright, Walt Whitman and Percy Bysshe Shelley. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

 

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.

 

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Aug 19, 2021
Silvia Moreno-Garcia on VELVET WAS THE NIGHT
35:15

We stayed up impossibly late one night because we just had to know how Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s The Gods of Jade and Shadow ends. (Sleep is overrated when you need to know if a young woman can help the Mayan God of Death reclaim his throne in Jazz-era Mexico). We did it again with the creepy, unsettling Mexican Gothic, one of our favorite books last year, and again with The Beautiful Ones, our May 2021 Speculative Fiction Monthly Pick. Silvia joins us on the show to talk about her new noir, Velvet Was the Night, breaking convention and writing across genres for each of her books, the importance of storytelling, and more. Featured titles: Velvet was the Night and Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Bath Haus by P.J. Vernon. Hosted/Produced by Kat Sarfas and engineered by Harry Liang.

 

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.

 

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Aug 17, 2021
Kristin Hannah on FOUR WINDS
35:32
Vianne and Isabelle, Leni, Elsa: Millions of readers have fallen head-over-heels for the heroines of Kristin Hannah’s most recent blockbusters, each one an unforgettable literary page-turner combining character, story and emotional payoff. Kristin joins us on the show to take readers behind the scenes of three of her biggest books, her evolution as a writer and more. Featured books: The Four Winds, The Great Alone and The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah; We Begin at the End by Chris Whitaker (a B&N Book Club Pick); Lightning Strike by William Kent Krueger; The Nickel Boys and Harlem Shuffle by Colson Whitehead; The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien; and Whose Names Are Unknown by Sanora Babb. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.
 
Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.
Aug 12, 2021
Naomi Hirahara on CLARK AND DIVISION
37:54
Chicago, 1944. Aki Ito and her parents arrive in town, expecting to be met by Rose, their oldest daughter. But tragedy has struck, and now Aki Ito is determined to discover what happened to her sister in this historical thriller. Naomi Hirahara joins us on the show to discuss sisterhood and coming-of-age, Japanese-American Internment and the 100-442nd Infantry Battalion, and the influence Chester Himes, Walter Mosley and Barbara Neely had on her work — and more. Featured Books: Clark and Division and the Mas Arai series by Naomi Hirahara and Japanese Americans in Chicago, Illinois by Alice Kishiye Murata. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.
 
Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Aug 10, 2021
Charlotte McConaghy on ONCE THERE WERE WOLVES
33:25

Everyone has a secret to protect in a small Scottish Highlands town in Charlotte McConaghy’s new novel, Once There Were Wolves, the follow-up to her hit debut, Migrations (now in paperback). Charlotte joins us on the show to talk about writing literary fiction with crime elements, rewilding places and people, exploring empathy and hope through dark stories, and more. Featured books: Once There Were Wolves and Migrations by Charlotte McConaghy and The Overstory by Richard Powers. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes drop Tuesday and Thursday.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Aug 05, 2021
Ash Davidson on DAMNATION SPRING
36:49

Prepare to have your heart broken in all the best ways by Ash Davidson’s miraculous debut novel, Damnation Spring — our August Discover Pick. She joins us on the show to talk about starting with endings (and making big last-minute story changes); grounding her beautiful prose in real-life stories and first-person research; her love for her characters, and more. Featured Books: Damnation Spring by Ash Davidson, East of Eden by John Steinbeck, Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner, The Round House by Louise Erdrich, How Much of These Hills Is Gold by C. Pam Zhang, and A Bitter Fog by Carol Von Strum. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Aug 03, 2021
Ben Macintyre on AGENT SONYA
40:39

If you love reading pulse-pounding stories about fictional spies, you’ll love Ben Macintyre’s thrilling true (and bestselling) stories about real-world spies, like The Spy and the Traitor, A Spy Among Friends: Kim Philby and the Great Betrayal, and Operation Mincemeat. His latest yes-this-is-absolutely-a-true-story (Ben has the documentation to prove it) book, Agent Sonya, has the pacing of a great novel and plenty of incredible details as the story cuts from Shanghai and Manchuria in the 1920s and 30s to Switzerland and the UK during WWII and into the Cold War (and beyond). Ben joins us on the show to talk about Ursula Burton — wife, mother and dedicated spy — John le Carré, and the joys of writing about espionage (Hint: It’s all about the hunt). Featured book: Agent Sonya by Ben Macintyre. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes drop every Tuesday and Thursday.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 29, 2021
Eddie S. Glaude, Jr. on BEGIN AGAIN
39:27

James Baldwin died in 1987, but his work still speaks to us — as if it was written last year, or last month, or even last week. Eddie S. Glaude, Jr. joins us on the show to discuss leaving the U.S. in order to write about Baldwin (and why Baldwin came back from Paris); why we’re reaching for Baldwin now, more than three decades after his death; what Baldwin has to teach us about the intersection of memory, history, identity and race — and more. Featured books: Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Our Own by Eddie S. Glaude, Jr.; No Name in the Street, Nothing Personal and Nobody Knows My Name by James Baldwin. Produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Poured Over is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Stitcher. New episodes land Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Jul 27, 2021
Carolyn Ferrell on DEAR MISS METROPOLITAN
38:21

This is what we talk about when we talk about voice: Fern, Gwin and Jesenia are the heart of Carolyn Ferrell's acclaimed new novel, Dear Miss Metropolitan, and their voices are unforgettable. Their story is a story of trauma and grief and hope unlike any you've read before, though readers who love The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison and The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead won't want to miss this one. Carolyn joins us on the show to talk about her electrifying novel, the inspiration she draws from the work of Edward P. Jones, and more. Featured books: Dear Miss Metropolitan by Carolyn Ferrell, the short stories of Edward P. Jones, Friday Black by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, and Ill Will by Dan Chaon. Produced/hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 22, 2021
Helen MacDonald on VESPER FLIGHTS
38:16

We've run out of superlatives to describe Helen Macdonald’s memoir, H is For Hawk. She’s followed her acclaimed bestseller — which showed many readers a new way of looking at the natural world — with a delightfully smart collection of essays in Vesper Flights, now out in paperback. Helen joins us on the show to talk about how birds’ nests changed her understanding of home, writing in hotel rooms, and what the natural world can teach us about building community and more. Featured books: Vesper Flights and H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald, My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, Missionaries by Phil Klay, and Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 20, 2021
Catherine Raven on FOX & I
38:31

Fox & I, Catherine Raven’s tale of an intentional friendship with a wild red fox and how it changed her, is a kaleidoscopic meld of quiet observation, sharp reflection, wry humor and poetry. She joins us on the show to talk about empathy, what it means to be alone but not lonely, and other brilliant and surprising lessons she learned from her companion. Featured titles: Fox & I: An Uncommon Friendship by Catherine Raven, The Little Prince and Wind, Sand and Stars by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Moby Dick by Herman Melville, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Wolf Hall trilogy by Hilary Mantel, All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, and The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 15, 2021
Sam Kean on THE ICEPICK SURGEON
34:41
Sam Kean is an eclectic writer with an affinity for scientific subjects and their weird and darker paths, and he has an inimitable knack for transforming this passionate interest into astonishing story, punctuated with humor and rife with the absurd in his books The Disappearing Spoon, The Violinist’s Thumb, Caesar’s Last Breath, The Tale of the Dueling
Neurosurgeons and The Bastard Brigade. His latest book, The Icepick Surgeon, is a tale of scientists and doctors gone amok, crossing the line from experiment to crime, often wrong for all well-intentioned reasons, and what these stories reveal about historic times in which they took place. Sam Kean joins us on the show to talk about pirates, mad paleontologists, scientist-spies, and more. Featured books: The Icepick Surgeon by Sam Kean and Evolution Gone Wrong by Alex Bezzerides.
 
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Jul 13, 2021
Matt Haig on THE BOOK OF COMFORT
42:29

Readers LOVE Matt Haig's charming, full of heart, and genuinely unputdownable novels The Midnight Library and How to Stop Time and made both of them bestsellers. Like many of us, Matt spent much of 2020 feeling a little anxious, a little frazzled--and looking for comfort, the subject of his latest work, The Book of Comfort. He joins us on the show to talk about hope, change and the importance of weird thinking. Featured books: The Comfort Book, The Midnight Library and Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig, Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke, Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne and the 1812 version of Grimm's Fairy Tales. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 08, 2021
S. A. Cosby on RAZORBLADE TEARS
40:50

We’re huge fans of S.A. Cosby’s pulse-pounding noir novels set in Red Hill County, VA—and we’re not alone: Dennis Lehane, Walter Mosley, Lee Child, Stephen King and Laura Lippman are too. But Blacktop Wasteland and Razorblade Tears are more than action-packed thrill rides where the bad guys are very bad and the good guys are doing the best they can with what they have. S.A. Cosby joins us on the show to talk about redemption, family, writers he loves, and making up lies to find the truth. Featured books: Razorblade Tears and Blacktop Wasteland by S.A. Cosby, A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley, and The Devil All the Time by Donald Ray Pollack. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.

Jul 06, 2021
Ayad Akhtar on HOMELAND ELEGIES
35:01
Ayad Akhtar’s plays—Disgraced (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama), The Who and the What, and Junk¬—and his novels, American Dervish and Homeland Elegies, are electrifying, unforgettable works of art that push audiences and readers to think about community and power, money and success, and what it means to be American. He joins us on the show to talk about the inspiration for the outrageous and wildly funny Homeland Elegies (now available in paperback), Shakespeare and more. Featured books: Homeland Elegies, American Dervish, Disgraced and Junk by Ayad Akhtar; Ravelstein and The Adventures of Augie March by Saul Bellow; Hadji Murat by Leo Tolstoy; Henry IV Part One and Part Two and Coriolanus by William Shakespeare; and Portnoy’s Complaint by Philip Roth. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.
Jul 01, 2021
Casey McQuiston on RED, WHITE AND ROYAL BLUE
39:58
We’re not the only readers who adore Casey McQuiston’s super-fun, hilarious—and bestselling—love stories. She joins us on the show to talk about using astrology to help with character development (and more), writing rom-coms during the pandemic, the magical power of true love, Tik Tok and more. Featured titles: Red, White and Royal Blue and One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston, Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid, She’s Too Pretty to Burn by Wendy Heard, How to Find a Princess by Alyssa Cole, The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo, Somebody’s Daughter by Ashley C. Ford, Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir and I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Mary McNamara. Produced/Hosted by Elani Wilson and engineered by Harry Liang.
 
Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.
Jun 29, 2021
Kiese Laymon on LONG DIVISION
40:50

Kiese Laymon — memoirist, essayist, novelist — is one of the most extraordinary and exciting writers working today. Best known for his acclaimed memoir Heavy, he recently bought back the rights to his first two books, the essay collection How to Slowly Kill Yourselves and Others in America and the picaresque coming-of-age novel, Long Division, so he could revise them and send them back into the world as they’re meant to be. He joins us on the show to talk about language and memory, rewriting and rereading. Featured Books: Long Division, How to Slowly Kill Yourselves and Others in America and Heavy by Kiese Laymon, Punch Me Up to the Gods by Brian Broome, The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deeshaw Philyaw, Gorilla, My Love by Toni Cade Bambara, and Corregidora by Gayl Jones, Sing, Unburied Sing by Jesmyn Ward and There There by Tommy Orange. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Jun 24, 2021
Laura Lippman on DREAM GIRL
43:37
Writer Gerry Allen is trapped at home after a bad fall, isolated in his swank apartment high over Baltimore Harbor — and the strange calls and letters he’s getting won’t stop. Laura Lippman’s killer new novel Dream Girl is a nod to a classic Agatha Christie locked-room mystery with a twisty plot, crackling dialogue, and lots of literary fun. Featured Books: Dream Girl, Lady in the Lake and My Life as a Villainess by Laura Lippman, Misery by Stephen King, Zuckerman Unbound by Philip Roth, Circe by Madeline Miller, Still Here: The Madcap, Nervy, Singular Life of Elaine Stritch by Alexandra Jacobs, and What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes every Tuesday and Thursday.
Jun 22, 2021
Kristen Arnett on WITH TEETH
43:19
We fell head over heels for Mostly Dead Things, Kristen Arnett’s wonderful, darkly comic debut novel about family (and taxidermy) set in central Florida — and we’ve been waiting, waiting, waiting for her latest novel, With Teeth, which we tore through as soon as it arrived. Kristen joins us on the show to talk about the family dynamics at the center of With Teeth, queerness on and off the page, nostalgia and more. Featured books: With Teeth by Kristen Arnett, Ordinary Girls by Jaquira Diaz, Long Live the Tribe of Fatherless Girls by T. Kira Madden, Edinburgh by Alexander Chee, Detransition, Baby by Torrey Peters, Memorial by Bryan Washington, Filthy Animals by Brandon Taylor, and Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang. Follow us here for new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Jun 17, 2021
John MacLean on HOME WATERS
36:52

You don't have to be an avid fly fisher to appreciate John Maclean's beautiful new book HOME WATERS, but it will certainly inspire you to spend more time outside. A former Washington correspondent for the Chicago Tribune, with a second career writing books about wildfire, John now splits his time between DC and his family’s cabin on Seeley Lake in Montana. And if you’ve read John’s father’s book, A River Runs Through It and Other Stories, you know that cabin, and the Blackfoot River, and John’s Uncle Paul — though you won’t know Uncle Paul’s whole story, until you read HOME WATERS.
Featured books: Home Waters by John Maclean, A River Runs Through It by Norman Maclean, Ernest Hemingway's short story, The Big Two-Hearted River (included in his collection In Our Time), and a Sherlock Holmes omnibus. Produced/Hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Jun 15, 2021
Danielle Henderson on THE UGLY CRY
38:12

You might know Danielle Henderson as the creator of the legendary feminist Ryan Gosling meme (which she later turned into a book); or from her most excellent recaps of Scandal and other shows for Vulture; her work as a television writer; or as the co-host of the screamingly funny movie podcast, I SAW WHAT YOU DID. Danielle’s memoir, THE UGLY CRY, is the unforgettable, darkly comic, true story of her unconventional childhood in the 80s — it’s a complex and wry do-I-laugh-or-do-I-cry memoir, and Danielle’s sublime writing is smart and sharp and not to be missed, but just wait until you meet her wise, horror-movie loving grandmother.
Featured books: The Ugly Cry by Danielle Henderson, Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris and Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs. Hosted and produced by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 
Jun 10, 2021
Clint Smith on HOW THE WORD IS PASSED
58:00

HOW THE WORD IS PASSED is one of our most anticipated books for June 2021 — it’s a powerful portrait of America today, built from our history and Clint Smith’s incredible insight. Writer for @TheAtlantic, teacher and Doctor, Clint Smith is also a poet (Counting Descent) and the host of @thecrashcourse Black American History. Our interview with Clint runs a little longer than usual because there’s so much shared ground to cover.
Featured books: How the Word is Passed by Clint Smith, Long Division by Kiese Laymon, The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris, and The Secret Lives of Church Ladies by Deesha Philyaw. Hosted and produced by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

Jun 08, 2021
Ashley C. Ford on SOMEBODY'S DAUGHTER
33:47

Ashley C. Ford's essays and journalism have run in The Guardian and Buzzfeed; She's profiled Serena Williams and Anne Hathaway for Allure, Stacey Abrams for Marie Claire, and Vice President Kamala Harris for Elle; and her most recent podcast was Lovecraft Country Radio, the official companion to the hit show. No matter the subject or the format, Ashley knows how to tell a story with deep honesty and a lot of style, and now the story she's telling is hers. Glennon Doyle (Untamed) says Ashley's a "writer for the ages," and Oprah Winfrey's featuring Ashley's memoir, SOMEBODY'S DAUGHTER on her imprint, An Oprah Book. Featured Books: Somebody's Daughter by Ashley C. Ford, Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, and Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.

This episode was produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

Jun 03, 2021
Maggie O'Farrell on HAMNET
31:29

Maggie O'Farrell joins us to talk about HAMNET, her dreamy, intoxicating story of grief and love and Shakespeare, now out in paperback. Featured Books: Hamnet, The Vanishing of Esme Lennox and I Am, I Am, I Am by Maggie O'Farrell, the stories of Alice Munro (Dear Life is a great place to start) and Mary Oliver's poetry. This episode was produced and hosted by Miwa Messer and engineered by Harry Liang.

Follow us here for new episodes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

Jun 01, 2021