Vick Mickunas

Host - Book Nook

Vick Mickunas created the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1200 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.

Ways To Connect

Chris West has been a stamp collector for many years. His collection includes some of the first postage stamps that were issued in Britain. West has written "A History of Britain in Thirty-Six Postage Stamps." He selected particular stamps that seemed to speak to him about the history of the particular time periods in when each one was printed.

As we surge headlong through this crazy culture do you ever feel the need for some new words to describe what you are seeing and experiencing? Fortunately for us Liesl Schillinger has stepped forward to plug some of these linguistic gaps.

In her book "Wordbirds" Schillinger coins new expressions to relieve some of these vocabulary shortfalls. Do you hate television or at least pretend to loathe it? According to Schillinger you have a case of "telaversion."

When Bill Bryson was mulling over his next project he was thinking about writing a dual biography of Charles Lindbergh and Babe Ruth. Lindbergh flew solo across the Atlantic Ocean to Paris during the summer of 1927. Nobody had ever done that before. He became an instant celebrity.

Cover Art by David Battle

This essay appears in The Antioch Review's Fall 2013 edition Cartography 101 with a Twist.

Here's an excerpt:

The central character in Larry Baker's novel is Harry Ducharme. Harry was once at the top of the radio world but his fortunes have taken a real hit. Harry washes up in Saint Augustine, Florida. He's living in his car. He drinks. A lot.

Then Harry hears this voice coming out of the radio. Her name is Nora James. She hosts a cooking show on WWHD, the tiny little radio station in town. Harry feels compelled to meet Nora. He goes to WWHD and asks for a job.

Henry Shackleford begins his tale in the Kansas Territory. The year was 1856 and Henry was a slave. Soon the abolitionist John Brown appears on the scene. Brown is all fired up about fighting slavery. When he encounters Henry he thinks she's a girl named Henrietta. And he quickly coins an affectionate nickname for him (her): Onion. From that point onward Onion dresses like a girl. Many years later, when Henry was 100+ years old he told someone about his crazy adventures with John Brown.

Sue Grafton continues to work her way through the alphabet in her long-running detective series that features her beloved character Kinsey Millhone. "W is for Wasted" is the 23rd book in the series. In this interview Sue Grafton talks about the challenges she faces in trying not to repeat herself and what we might expect from the last three books and the letters of the alphabet that she will be covering as this series draws to a close in coming years.

Michael Ruhlman is a food guy. He loves to talk about food, write about it, cook it and eat it! Over the past 20 years Ruhlman has established his reputation as one of the most knowledgeable and discerning foodies in America.

In this interview we talked about schmaltz, the forgotten fat, and charcuterie, the art of salting, smoking and curing meats. As you listen to our conversation I dare you to stay out of the kitchen. I dare you. Bon appetit!

Hurricane Katrina brought many horrors to the New Orleans area. One of the worst things that happened eight years ago when Katrina made landfall occurred at the St. Rita's Nursing Home as a massive wall of water washed over the facility. 34 residents lost their lives.

This particular sad event stood out among the many horrors that took place. There was a media feeding frenzy. People wanted to know why these unfortunate souls had not been evacuated before the storm hit?

Ricky Skaggs has enjoyed a long career as one of the best mandolin players on the planet. He has been playing since he was a small boy. At an early age he met many of his musical idols; Bill Monroe, Lester Flatt, Ralph Stanley. He decided that it was finally time to tell his story. And what a story he has to tell in this memoir "Kentucky Traveler - My Life in Music."

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