Readers & Writers on the Air


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Lit by Mary KArrJoin the Readers & Writers Book Club

Our current discussion is around the memoir Lit, by author Mary Karr. We will talk with the author in late September

Literature Features:

Recent Books Recent regional books received at NCPR
Recommended by listeners and staff The 2010-01 Winter Reading List
Merriam-Webster Online
Find Out of Print Books

Aug 19, 2014 — The protagonist of Julie Schumacher's new Dear Committee Members is frustrated with the future of American arts and letters — and the feckless students who pester him for recommendation letters.
Aug 19, 2014 — In his new memoir, Doctored, Sandeep Jauhar describes a growing discontent among doctors and how it's affecting patients. He says rushed doctors are often practicing "defensive medicine."
Aug 18, 2014 — Author Adam Rogers says there are lots of myths about what causes hangovers. His new book, Proof: The Science of Booze, explores these and other scientific mysteries of alcohol's effect on the body.
Aug 18, 2014 — The novel is about a flavor chemist who tests a sweetener on lab rats and monkeys and finds side effects the company covers up. Author Stephan Eirik Clark says he was inspired by Fast Food Nation.
Aug 18, 2014 — For our look at summer poetry, we turn to Charlotte Boulay, a Philadelphia-based poet, with "The End of Summer." She offers a poem that, on its surface, is about an idyllic activity: taking a nap.
more author interviews from NPR

The program is supported by the donations of NCPR listeners and with the generous support of the New York State Council on the Arts Literature Program and by the The Corning Foundation.

Corning gift
Canton Plant Manager Joseph W. Neubert presented North Country Public Radio Underwriting Director Sandy Demarest with a $6,000 check representing Corning Incorporated Foundation’s ongoing support of NCPR's local and national news coverage and its contemporary literature series Readers & Writers on the Air. Corning Foundation has been a stalwart supporter of NCPR's mission since 1982.

Finding Readers & Writers books

The books to be discussed are available at public libraries throughout northern New York and western Vermont or may be purchased at discount prices at the following participating bookstores. Please identify yourself as a listener to North Country Public Radio's literature series when you request the discount:

The St. Lawrence University Bookstore, Canton, NY
Borders, Plattsburgh
The Bookstore Plus, Lake Placid, NY
The Peace & Justice Store, Burlington, VT
The Potsdam Food Co-op,
Potsdam, NY
The University Bookstore,
Potsdam, NY
Fact & Fiction Bookshop,
Saranac Lake, NY
The College Store at SUNY Potsdam, Potsdam, NY
Old Forge Hardware, Old Forge, NY
Hero's Welcome, North Hero, VT


Readers & Writers with hosts Ellen Rocco and Chris Robinson airs on an irregular schedule.

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Recent program audio | R&W bookstores

About Readers & Writers

Ellen RoccoReaders & Writers, NCPR's conversation on contemporary literature, invites into the studio visiting authors, and invites listeners to call in to join the conversation.

The program is hosted by NCPR station manager Ellen Rocco, and Chris Robinson of Clarkson University. Members of the St. Lawrence University English Department faculty sometimes join Ellen on the program.

 Recent Readers & Writers programs

Readers & Writers: Christian Bok

Our guest was poet Christian Bok, author of Crystallography and Eunoia. Bok explores the structure and science of language in his work. The first of these titles was originally published in the mid-90s and recently re-released after years of being unavailable. The second came out in 1992 and won the Griffin Prize for Poetic Excellence. Chris Robinson and Theo Hummer host. The author will give a reading on Thursday, March 18 at 8 pm in Sykes Common Room on the St. Lawrence University campus in Canton.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers: Antonya Nelson

Our guest is Antonya Nelson, author of Some Fun: Stories and A Novella and Nothing Right: Short Stories. The first is a just-published new collection; the second is a paperback edition of an earlier collection which received very strong reviews. We'll be talking about both. Ellen Rocco and Chris Robinson host.

The author will give a reading on Thursday, February 25 at 8 pm in Sykes Common Room on the St. Lawrence University campus in Canton.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers on the Air: Kim Barnes

Kim Barnes, A Country Called Home. The Washington Post selected this as one of the best novels of 2009; the New York Times hailed Barnes for her descriptive writing about the American frontier. She is a past Pulitzer finalist for her memoir.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers: Winter and Holiday Reading Call-in

This year, we've timed our reading list call-in as a resource for last-minute holiday shoppers. Once again, we'll invite your suggestions for winter reading and gift giving, for book lovers of all ages. The list will be available on our website or, by request, mailed as a hard copy. Co-hosts for this show: Ellen Rocco, Chris Robinson, Rick Hunter, and John Ernst--plus, of course, our listeners.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers: Dean Olsher, author of "From Square One, A Meditation, with Digressions, on Crosswords"

Dean has been a broadcaster for more than three decades, including years as an arts and culture correspondent for NPR and as the creator and host of The Next Big Thing. Will Shortz described this book as "the most literate book on crosswords" he's read. Maira Kalman wrote, "If Dean Olsher wrote a book on the history of plumbing supplies, I would snap it up. He whips the subject in a blender of love, curiosity, elation, mystery, humor and obsession." Ellen Rocco and Chris Robinson host.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers on the Air: Nathaniel Mackey

Bass Cathedral is the most recent work from the poet/novelist/cultural observer and seeker. Mackey has produced an extraordinary body of work based in jazz, poetry and prose, propelled by a curiosity and fervor that reaches back to the Middle Passage. Hosts Chris Robinson and Theo Hummer.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers: Scott Russell Sanders, A Conservationist Manifesto

Professor Sanders stands out as a conservationist writer, making our place on this planet, and what we need to do to preserve ourselves and our globe-clear and accessible. In this most recent work, Sanders carves a clear path with 40 steps to guide us  Go to full article

Readers and Writers: Steve Almond, (Not that You Asked): Rants, Exploits, and Obsessions

Look out Oprah, Sean Hannity, reality TV and other titans of modern culture. In this most recent collection of essays, the author of the bestseller, Candyfreak, takes on the kingpins of American inanity and mediocrity. Vanity Fair called the collection "gleefully unrepentant" and the NY Times described the book as "taunting, revealing, irreverent, and earnest." Ellen Rocco and Chris Robonson host.  Go to full article

Readers & Writers: Francine Prose, Touch

The author's most recent novel is a sexual coming-of-age story aimed at high school and adult readers. Ms. Prose's other works include the novels Goldenrod, Blue Angel and A Changed Man, as well as non-fiction--most recently--Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and For Those Who Want to Write Them, a NY Times Notable Book of the Year.  Go to full article

Readers and Writers Summer Reading Call-in

It's our annual Readers and Writers Summer Reading Call-in. Staff, guests and listeners hare the best beach reads and whatever else is on the summer reading bookshelf. Hosts Ellen Rocco and Chris Robinson are joined by book maven John Ernst. A compiled reading list will be available in a few days.  Go to full article

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