When I’m not reading, I love listening to podcasts about books. They cause me problems because they discuss so many books that I end up wanting to read everything and there’s simply just not enough time in the world to read all the books I want! Nevertheless, they are a great source of book news and recommendations and a good way to find out about new authors or to hear from authors you love.
So I thought I’d share some of my favourite listens with you.
List Number Six: Nine great podcasts about books, reading and authors.
Simon Mayo is a British radio presenter who hosts the daily drive time show on Radio 2, Britain’s most popular radio station. His show has a fortnightly book club which is usually featured on his weekly podcast from the BBC. They talk to the author and get reviews from people who work on the show and from listeners. The reads they recommend tend to be of a very high quality and this podcast helped me discover two of the best books I’ve read in the past couple of years: Wonder by R J Palacio and The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.
This podcast features two Canadian blokes, Mark and Jon, taking it in turns to pick a book to be enthusiastic about and they often recommend other books during their discussions. They’ve been on hiatus for a while but they’ve got a big back catalogue of podcasts to listen to.
More podcasts from the BBC. The World Book Club is from the World Service and Book Club is from Radio 4. Each month they interview a best-selling author about one of their books and put questions to them from listeners from all over the world. They’re quite serious podcasts but they allow you to get a real insight into some great authors including Alice Walker, Donna Tartt, Malorie Blackman, Harlan Coben and Lionel Shriver.
Two podcasts from British newspaper The Guardian. A really good source of literary news. Podcasts often have a theme such as specific genres, books from certain countries or winners of book prizes. The children’s book version often gets interviews with great YA and kids authors.
Not strictly about books, this is a podcast where romance authors Jennifer Crusie and Lucy March watch and talk about films in order to pick up tips to improve their writing. Jenny Crusie is probably my favourite romance author and these podcasts are funny and interesting. Unfortunately they stopped podcasting in 2012 but there’s a back catalogue of about 80 podcasts to listen to on iTunes.
A weekly podcast from The Tattered Cover Bookstore, an independent bookshop in Denver, Colorado. They get an amazing number of fascinating authors who come to do book events at the shop and podcast these events which usually include an author reading followed by audience questions. I loved this podcast so much that I forced my husband to go on holiday to Colorado in 2011 just so we could visit the bookstore!
A final entry for the wonderful BBC. This is a weekly podcast featuring clips from Radio 4 book programmes Open Book and A Good Read. They are quite literary and fairly similar to the Guardian books podcast, but they get good author interviews and can often be quite fascinating.
Do you listen to any book podcasts? I’d love to hear your recommendations for good ones which I’ve overlooked!