Vick Mickunas

Host - Book Nook

Vick Mickunas introduced the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1500 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Listen to the Book Nook with Vick Mickunas for intimate conversations about books with the writers who create them.  Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.

Ways to Connect

Ken Ilgunas decided that he wanted to take a walk. It was a long walk. Ilgunas hiked from Fort McMurray in Canada to the Gulf Coast of Texas. He was following the route of the proposed Keystone/XL pipeline. He tried to follow the actual course so most of his trip was made across grasslands and range lands. He was trying to stay off the roadways. Ilgunas was trespassing on private land for most of his journey. But he never got arrested. Nobody shot him. And he had some amazing adventures and met some wonderful people along the way. This is a fabulous adventure story.

Simon Sebag Montefiore has just published a history book that is a must read. He's also a fabulous person to interview. Here's my review that just ran in the Cox Ohio newspapers:

Over the years that I have been paying attention I have noticed that women tend to read mostly fiction. Men, if they read any books at all, frequently prefer non-fiction. At least that is what I have been observing.

Melissa Fay Greene has had a long and successful career as a writer of non-fiction books. She is frequently approached by people who are wondering if she can help them to find publishers or agents for their book projects. Greene is patient and polite. Even so the sheer volume of these requests can cause her to be somewhat hesitant to offer advice. One day she was contacted by a woman in Atlanta about a book idea. Greene, who lives in Atlanta, agreed to meet the woman for coffee.

Steve Hamilton has had a long and successful career as the author of a series of crime novels set in northern Michigan which feature Alex McKnight. Hamilton has just unveiled the first book in a new series that will be featuring a criminal named Nick Mason. In this debut Hamilton sketches out the outrageous circumstances that allowed Nick Mason to exit prison after serving only 5 years out of a 25 year sentence.

Some wonderful things come from Scotland; single malt whisky, haggis, and Tartan Noir. OK, let's forget the haggis. I do live for the Tartan Noir though. Perhaps you are unfamiliar with this dazzling literary genre? Scottish writers produce some of the finest crime novels; thus the term Tartan Noir. Should it be capitalized? I think so.

On May 4, 1970 a terrible event transpired on the campus of Kent State University. Ohio National Guardsman fired their rifles into a crowd of students. Four students died and a number of others were injured. The carnage was the end result of a cascading chain of troubling events that had unfolded over one horrific weekend in northern Ohio.

In his book "67 Shots - Kent State and the End of American Innocence" Howard Means examines the escalating turbulence which ultimately led to this horror. It should have never happened. But it did. It is good to remember. Lest we forget.

Manhattan was once a place where ordinary people could afford to live. People with dreams. People with low paying jobs. Even starving artists. Molly Prentiss has set her debut novel in New York City as the 1970's are ending. Her book is populated by distinctive characters from the period; a barmaid who has followed her dreams and moved to the city from the wilds of Idaho, an art critic for the New York Times who has a rare perceptive gift, and a struggling painter who has fled the Dirty Wars in his native Argentina.

Can you name the original 13 British colonies that then became the United States? Okay, can you name what was once considered to be a potential 14th colony? Did you say Canada? You are well informed. Apparently the US has had designs upon Canada for years and according to Steve Berry those plans to annex Canada continued right up until World War Two.

The "Prey" series by John Sandford is one of the most popular crime fiction series around. The books sell and sell and sell. There's a good reason for that- they are really good books.

As we scan the world around us we can focus on many troubling things that are happening. Just to name a few that spring from the forefront of my perceptions at this moment: climate change, the horrifying situation in Syria, and the wanton destruction of precious cultural treasures by groups that justify their violence somehow through their warped concepts of what is unacceptable to them.

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