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Authors

Has our society got you down? Is our culture depressing you? Have you been unlucky in love? Are you tired of feeling like somebody's punching bag? I have just the book for you. The eminently quotable Cheryl Strayed has put together a self-help book called "Brave Enough." You might know Strayed as the writer who brought us the mega-memoir "Wild." She has a terse, pithy, and succulent mode of expression.

Perhaps you spurn the "self-help" category? I know that I do. Don't ignore this book. This is an inspiring collection of Cheryl's most resonant quotes. Here's an example:

Harold Holzer has dedicated much of his life to the study of one of our greatest presidents. Abraham Lincoln. Holzer has written many books about Lincoln and his recent book "Lincoln and the Power of the Press - the War for Public Opinion" was the one that finally delivered the ultimate honor for a Lincoln scholar. Holzer won the Lincoln Prize for it. 

Holzer writes exceptional books and he's an absolute delight to interview. I'm sure you'll understand what I mean as you listen to this one.

Kathi Reed makes her literary debut with this crime novel set in Cincinnati. Reed's sleuth, Annie Fillmore, is a mortgage loan officer at a big bank. She also has an uncanny talent for showing up right when murder victims are being discovered. In this case the dead body belongs  to her boss. Gosh, who  would  want to kill the most reviled man in the building? Lots of suspects. Very few clues. The cops want Annie to keep her nose out of this case.  But Annie just cannot stay away.

Chris Woodyard is the grand dame of "Haunted Ohio." Woodyard's dedication and devotion to unearthing the spookiest stories and superstitions have kept readers horrified,entertained and enthralled  for decades. For her latest collection Woodyard has excavated reams of creepy material from periodicals of the Victorian era. The Victorians could seem a bit obsessive about death.

These articles range from strange to bizarre, from chilling to mildly disturbing. Her passion for this  work shines through in her books  and in this interview.

Over the years that I have been conducting radio interviews I have had the opportunity to speak to some people who were in unusual locations. Cell phones are to blame. Back in the 1990's I called a woman who was living in a tree.  Julia Butterfly was perched high atop a redwood tree named Luna. A logging company in northern California was planning to chop the tree down. Julia had been living up in the tree for months to keep that from happening!

Anna Badkhen is one of my favorite writers. Her latest book is one of my favorite books of the year. My interview with Anna is one of my favorite interviews this year. I cannot wait for her next. Here's my review of her current book which ran in the Cox Ohio newspapers:

Beth Macy returned to the program for the paperback release of her phenomenal investigative study of the collapse of the US furniture industry which once thrived in states like Virginia. Macy was working on a newspaper story about displaced workers when she heard about a man who had managed to keep his furniture factory running after he fought back against the flood of cheap imported furniture that had put so many American factories out of business.

Julia Keller's gritty crime series featuring the West Virginia prosecutor Bell Elkins continues in "Last Ragged Breath" as a man who wants to develop a luxury resort in Bell's hardscrabble county is found murdered. The leading suspect is a reclusive hermit who just wants to be left alone with his pack of rescued dogs. Bell is leading the prosecution but something about this case just doesn't smell right. Bell finally gets to the bottom of things. Some secrets are harder and blacker than the coal that once powered the economy of that region

The first atomic bomb was dropped on the city of Hiroshima in Japan in 1945. Shortly thereafter another bomb was detonated over the Japanese city of Nagasaki. Our war with Japan ended shortly thereafter.

Much has been written about what happened at Hiroshima. Much less has been said about Nagasaki. Susan Southard conducted extensive interviews with some residents of Nagasaki who survived that nuclear blast.

Wallace Stroby returned to the program to talk about his latest novel featuring Crissa Stone, the third in this series. These books are crime novels and Crissa is a criminal. She's always looking for the next big score and in "The Devil's Share" she might have gotten a lot more than she bargained for. Crissa gets involved with some shady characters who are smuggling stolen art from a war zone in the Middle East. It is always good to learn from your mistakes especially when your errors can prove to be fatal ones.

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