A Novel Idea

1st Sunday of each month at 4 pm

Non-fiction to pulp fiction, host Suzanne M. Lang explores the world of books featuring conversations with writers, academics, and readers. We all have a story to tell. It’s A Novel Idea.  
 

Ways to Connect

Suzanne Lang speaks with author Cynthia Lim, whose book  Wherever You Are, A Memoir of Love, Marriage, and Brain Injury is an odyssey through loss and disability in the aftermath of her husband’s suffering an anoxic brain injury as a result of a heart attack; it’s a tale of her life of self-empowerment, care-giving, and sustaining love.

Suzanne also speaks with Susan Avery Stewart, who shows us the many virtues that grace our lives through lifes’ transitions in her guide toward better living, Winter’s Graces: the Surprising Gifts of Later Life.

Jonah Raskin has a large and ranging body of non-fiction books and articles and now has come out with a detective fiction of a different order, Dark Land, Dark Mirror.

A Novel Idea with Suzanne Lang airs Sunday afternoons at 4:00 pm on KRCB-FM Radio 91 / streaming @ radio.krcb.org / Comcast channel 961 throughout the Bay Area / Download the FREE KRCB App @ iTunes & Google Play!

 

San Francisco’s City Lights Bookstore, the landmark independent bookstore founded in 1953 by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Peter D. Martin, recently featured rising author Bruce Holbert in conversation with KRCB’s Suzanne M. Lang in an evening hosted by Peter Maravelis. Holbert’s latest novel is Whiskey —“A gut-punch of a bleak family saga that satisfies on many levels.” says Kirkus Reviews.

A timely encore presentation of Rosemary Manchester in conversation with Brad Herzog, collaborator on Carolyn Goodman’s memoir, My Mantelpiece: a Memoir of Survival and Social Justice. Goodman, who died in 2007, was the mother of Andy Goodman, who in 1964 along with James Earl Chaney and Michael Schwerner, was murdered in Mississippi while trying to register black voters. Carolyn turned her son’s death into a mission to educate, communicate, and take action against injustice.

From Homer to Harry Potter, literary critic and philosopher Martin Puchner takes the reader on an epic journey through the history of literature, and so the history of humanity in The Written World, The Power of Stories to Shape People, History, and Civilization. This work is lively and accessible and Martin brings that energy to his conversation with Suzanne Lang.
 

It’s all about food. Suzanne Lang talks with Adam Federman on his book Fasting and Feasting, the Life of Visionary Food Writer Patience Gray. Gray became somewhat of a cult figure when she published Honey from a Weed in 1986. 

Also featured is Elaine Khosrova, a gastronomic rock star who specializes in stories about food history and culture, and Suzanne talks with Elaine about her book,  Butter, a Rich History

To celebrate the release of Bruce Holbert’s third novel, Whiskey, here is a reprise of two previous conversations between Bruce and Suzanne M Lang on the release of his first novel, Lonesome Animals, followed by the truly amazing The Hour of Lead. Bruce is a gritty and poetic writer who explores character and landscape with a unique voice. We’ll feature a conversation about Whiskey on a future episode, but this show will bring you up to speed on the emergence of Bruce Holbert.  

Suzanne Lang talks with two of the world's most celebrated animal writers, Sy Montgomery and Elizabeth Marshall Thomas. They have collaborated on a book of essays. Sy and Liz are also good friends and practically next door neighbors. Join us as we talk about the minds, lives, and mysteries of animals …in the wild and in our homes. 

It’s A Novel Idea. Sunday at 4 on KRCB-FM Radio 91.

Two California writers who both had long non-literary careers before publishing these heralded first works join Suzanne M. Lang in conversation. 
 

Barbara Ridley’s When It’s Over is a sweeping historical fiction set during WWII that exposes elements of that war and on European refugees that resonates today …and is a pretty good love story too. 
 

Laurie Ann Doyle’s collection of short stories, World Gone Missing, is a loving homage to Northern California and twelve searing tales of loss, love, and what goes missing.  Sunday at 4pm PT – it’s A Novel Idea

Emerging from the economic consulting and the tech sector, Jaime B. Hansen aims to inspire and empower women through videos, speaking and speaking out; her latest book is Expanding the Conversation.   

History, culture, and strong women are at the core of the two novels, The History Makers by Val Bodurtha and The Ballet Lover by Barbara Baer; these are two authors you’ll want to remember. 

Val Bodurtha’s first novel is The History Makers is chilling, funny, and a smart coming of age story which imagines a contemporary Aztec civilization, as if the Aztecs had prevailed over the Spanish. 
 

This month on A Novel Idea:

Featured are two novelists whose books hit big this year. 

Fierce Kingdom is a thriller of a book by Gin Phillips, which takes place over the course of three hours in a zoo that is under attack by gunmen, and where a woman and her young son are trapped; ultimately this is a story of motherhood.  

Top intellectual property and entertainment lawyer Peter Afrasiabi joins Suzanne Lang in conversation on his recent book Burning Bridges, America’s 20-year Crusade to Deport Labor Leader Harry Bridges. Bridges was an immigrant, a longshoreman, and a labor leader which was not a good combination in the 1930s. The imbalance of executive power in the federal government of that time resonates with our contemporary situation.

 Join us Sunday, October 1st at 4 pm.

Historical fiction radiates into the present with two novels featured on A Novel Idea. Join Suzanne M. Lang in conversations with Susan Sherman on her novel about mystics and Marie Curie, If You Are There and David Boling, whose novel is The Lost History of Stars, set during brutal Boar Wars in South Africa and told through the experiences of a fourteen year-old girl.  
 

Hear A Novel Idea, Sunday September 3rd at 4:00 pm on KRCB-FM Radio 91!  

 

July 30th on A Novel Idea:  

Suzanne M. Lang talks with Thais Nye Derich about her path of self-examination and learning to discover that she, like many other women, was a victim of the medical establishment that denied her the human right of birthing her own child. Second Chance, A Mother’s Quest for a Natural Birth after Cesarean is not just a book about childbirth, but about control over our own lives and simply, about being human.  
 

Neo-noir and crime fiction with Suzanne Lang in conversation with Daniel Pyne, screenwriter, show runner of Amazon’s hit drama Bosch, and author of Catalina Eddy, a Novel in Three Decades. Suzanne also talks with poet and playwright Stephen Mack Jones, who has published his first novel, a crime thriller set in Detroit, August Snow.

Listen to A Novel Idea - Sunday afternoon July 2nd at 4:00 pm on KRCB-FM Radio 91!

       

For June, A Novel Idea features two novelists, whose books couldn’t be more different. Both write about the challenges of difference, of motherhood, and of finding stability in a sometimes-hostile world.  

Shanti Sekaran brings us Lucky Boy, the saga of two women, strangers and cultures apart, whose lives are connected through the life of an infant boy.  

Shelby Londyn-Heath has written The Twilight Tsunami, a raw, funny, and hard-hitting account of the lives of people involved in the child welfare system.  

A Novel Idea with Suzanne M. Lang features Jessica Teich with her memoir The Future Tense of Joy. A Rhodes Scholar, Teich happens upon an obituary of a fellow Rhodes Scholar who took her own life by jumping out a hotel window, which leads Jessica on a transformative journey.    

Also featured is Cathy Wild, whose book Wild Ideas: Creativity from the Inside Out uses personal stories and analysis of her own life to identify difficult to articulate concepts of identity, suffering, gratitude, and health.  
 

This month on A Novel Idea: 
 

Elite North Koreans struggle to protect themselves and their families in the face of a paraonoid, tyrannical regime in award winning journalist, Paul H.B. Shin’s espionage thriller, Half Life. Suzanne M. Lang talks with Shin about the novel, set in 1997, during the period when famine was devastating North Korea and there were a series of high profile defections.