Chana Porter on A Novel Idea (Aired: August 2, 2020)

Risky authors play with form and defy easy description, and this is the case with two authors who through their radical storytelling take us on a good ride, but with something sound and poignant underlying. The Seep is an alien life form that comes to inhabit humanity in Chana Porter’s quasi-utopian, surreal fantasy, The Seep. […]

A Celebration of Food and Family with Two Award-Winning Authors on A Novel Idea (Aired: July 5, 2020)

Food and family sustain us, especially during trying times. We celebrate this with two award-winning authors in conversation with Suzanne M. Lang.  Meera Ekkanath Klein has just released “Seeing Ceremony -A Novel in Recipes”, a follow-up to “My Mother’s Kitchen -A Novel in Recipes”, both coming of age novels set in Southern India featuring its […]

Caitlin Hamilton Summie Explains Why Our Stories Are Important on A Novel Idea – June 7, 2020

Our stories are important. It is our stories that connect us. So says Caitlin Hamilton Summie, author of To Lay to Rest our Ghosts, a remarkable and moving collection of 10 stories that reveal the complexity of our families and relationships, and the influence of place -all with finely rendered prose that stirs and lingers. […]

Suzanne Lang Talks with J. Chester Johnson – May 31, 2020

White people kill black people. Despite Emancipation, despite the Civil Rights movement of now over fifty years ago, white people still kill African Americans in cold blood. In 1919 in the state of Arkansas in the fertile area of the Mississippi River, in a town called Elaine over the course of a couple of days, […]

Barbara L. Baer Talks About Her Latest Novel, The Ice Palace Waltz on A Novel Idea (Aired: May, 3, 2020)

Suzanne M. Lang welcomes Barbara L. Baer in conversation on her latest novel, The Ice Palace Waltz, the multi-generational saga of two Jewish immigrant families—the western pioneers of Leadville Colorado and the smooth ‘our crowd’ New Yorkers, who come together amid the financial and social turmoil of early 20th Century America. Barbara is a journalist, […]

Namwali Serpell & Martin Puchner on A Novel Idea – April 5, 2020

Namwali Serpell is an Associate Professor at UC Berkeley and a well-published cultural critic who has now released an epic novel of Zambia; it is sweeping in scope, wildly imaginative, and grounded in the place along the Zambezi River called The Old Drift Suzanne M. Lang talks with Namwali about it all. Also featured is […]

Margaret Wilkerson Sexton and Jessica Winters Mireles (Aired: March 29, 2020)

Suzanne M. Lang talks with two authors whose novels reflect on gender and family, race and ethnicity, and the effects of heritage on American culture Margaret Wilkerson Sexton talks about her NAACP Image Award-winning novel The Revisioners, a multi-generational story set in Louisiana that is real and magical all at once. Suzanne also talks with […]

Joan Frank – Try to Get Lost, Essays on Travel and Place on A Novel Idea – March 1, 2020

Try to Get Lost!  We continue celebrating the work of Joan Frank. We recently featured her book of four novellas, Where You’re All Going. Now we travel with her in Try to Get Lost, Essays on Travel and Place. This is no ordinary “travel writing”, but a journey into who Joan is and who we are as […]

Joan Frank Shares Her Wit and Insight on A Novel Idea – February 1, 2020

This week on A Novel Idea, richly drawn characters, vivid language, and compelling pace and story create the most satisfying literary experience for readers, and this is what Joan Frank always delivers. Suzanne M. Lang welcomes Joan’s wit and insight, and her luscious conversation on her recent book, Where You’re All Going -Four Novellas. A […]

Journalist and Author Susan Swartz Joins Suzanne on A Novel Idea – January 5, 2020

Death and dementia aren’t all that funny, but really, sometimes they are, especially when we open ourselves up to the conversation.  Journalist Susan Swartz has published her first novel, Laughing in the Dark, that is all about navigating life’s challenges in the company of friends and family. Suzanne Lang talks with Swartz and also talks […]