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A Gentleman in Moscow Amor Towles
September 19, 2016 08:01 AM PDT
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Good afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Amor Towles (Toles), author of The Rules of Civility, which has been selling in hardback and paperback in my bookstore for seemingly the last decade or so! Now with his new novel A Gentleman in Moscow (Mosco)I am afraid that he will be taking up too much space in our crowded shop.

Suffice it to say that The Rules of Civility was a lovely book, which remains one of our best sellers, in part because we all tell everyone to read it. I have sent at least ten copies to friends.

This new book, set in another land and another time is of equal quality and introduces us to another side of an author whose books will one day, after I am gone, be in our classics section.

A Gentleman in Moscow explores a world in which a life is lived with pleasure curiosity and purpose although that life is constrained by space and by imprisonment. Characters are drawn to our protagonist through his charm, his kindness and his knowledge.

As he gives (as we all should) so he receives and so the book is suffused with love and possibility and helps the reader to remember that what is worthwhile in life is not measured in travels or houses or jewels or automobiles, but in our relationships with those that we love and the corollary relations with those who may not be ladies or gentleman, so with that ladies and gentlemen, welcome Amor and thanks for joining us once again on The Avid Reader.

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles
September 19, 2016 07:59 AM PDT
itunes pic

Good afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Amor Towles, author of The Rules of Civility, which has been selling in hardback and paperback in my bookstore for seemingly the last decade or so! Now with his new novel A Gentleman in Moscow (Mosco)I am afraid that he will be taking up too much space in our crowded shop.

Suffice it to say that The Rules of Civility was a lovely book, which remains one of our best sellers, in part because we all tell everyone to read it. I have sent at least ten copies to friends.

This new book, set in another land and another time is of equal quality and introduces us to another side of an author whose books will one day, after I am gone, be in our classics section.

A Gentleman in Moscow explores a world in which a life is lived with pleasure curiosity and purpose although that life is constrained by space and by imprisonment. Characters are drawn to our protagonist through his charm, his kindness and his knowledge.

As he gives (as we all should) so he receives and so the book is suffused with love and possibility and helps the reader to remember that what is worthwhile in life is not measured in travels or houses or jewels or automobiles, but in our relationships with those that we love and the corollary relations with those who may not be ladies or gentleman, so with that ladies and gentlemen, welcome Amor and thanks for joining us once again on The Avid Reader.

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko by Scott Stambach
September 12, 2016 02:05 PM PDT
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Scott give a terse and pithy answer in our 1Q1A feature!

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko by Scott Stambach
September 12, 2016 01:34 PM PDT
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Good afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of The Avid Reader. Today our guest is Scott Stambach author of, his debut novel The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko (Is ay enko).

Scott received his bachelor’s degree in Physics and Philosophy from SUNY and his Masters in Physics from UC San Diego. He teaches physics and Astronomy at Grossmont and Mesa Colleges [or San Diego City College and High Tech High]. He also collaborates with Science for Monks. Which is really cool.

He has published in several literary Journals including Ecclectica, Stirring and Convergence and Writing Disorder.

Especially read The Siren Disappeared in Writing Disorder which is as Gogolish as you can get. Think The Nose or The Overcoat.

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko is a novel about lacking, absence, presence, love, beauty and death.

Ivan who is 17 years old is a survivor or a legacy of Chernobyl and is doomed to a life long residency in Mazyr Hospital for Gravelly Ill Children. Not in the sense of Ms. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children or a Narnia, but more in the sense of a Gulag or more succinctly Hell.

The beauty of the book is that out of despair, death, resignation comes this pure white lotus of hope, beauty and love. The juxtaposition of these is what makes this book something special.

Ivan has no legs, one arm, a thumb and two fingers and a drooping face that produce a slur of a voice. But inside, in his own universe, resides an astounding intellect, wit and mischief and a bit of spite and malice.

Lost, waiting for something, trying to communicate to someone, other than his loving nurse Natalya, he finds Polina, this beautiful doomed creature who awakens what was a cinder in Ivan into a full blown fire.

I don’t want to spoil any aspect of this book and I sure could, as have, unfortunately in opinion other reviewers but suffice it to say that you will have never read another work like this, unless you spend your time reading a lot of dead guys’ stuff, and with that rather rambling introduction, welcome Scott and thanks for joining us today.

Michael Honig The Senility of Vladimir P.
September 08, 2016 07:25 AM PDT
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Good Afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Michael Honig (Michael Hanig) author of The Senility of Vladimir P. Released last month by Pegasus.

This thinly veiled, very thinly veiled look at the life, post today, of a despotic and thug-like ruler of modern day Russia reminds us that a country trodden on over centuries, oft-times seemingly points itself in the right direction and then is thoroughly trodden on again.

Told through the eyes of Nikolai Sheremetev (Sher Eh May Tev) caretaker and naïf of the now senile and delusional 5 time President and two time Prime Minister of one of the most corrupt countries on earth, we visit first hand the nature and extent of that corruption and the many forms it takes.
Along with this incisive and cynical look at Russia we have to deal with, coincidentally, our own election cycle in America and ask are we ready for that same type of leadership the same type of despotic government riddled with vice, ruled by oligarchs presided over by a smug, egomaniacal emperor of sorts.

But I digress. Vladimir P. is a masterwork, not only in terms of stripping away the screen that protects a country that even now is annexing the Ukraine, invading Syria and laughing in our faces at our own foolishness.

In sum, you will find this book entertaining, comical and absurd as well as scary, not in the sense of monsters although there is one, but in the sense of there but for the grace of God, go we. And it is all true. At least as the reader I feel that way.

Michael Honig
September 08, 2016 07:13 AM PDT
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Good Afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Michael Honig (Michael Hanig) author of The Senility of Vladimir P. Released last month by Pegasus.

This thinly veiled, very thinly veiled look at the life, post today, of a despotic and thug-like ruler of modern day Russia reminds us that a country trodden on over centuries, oft-times seemingly points itself in the right direction and then is thoroughly trodden on again.

Told through the eyes of Nikolai Sheremetev (Sher Eh May Tev) caretaker and naïf of the now senile and delusional 5 time President and two time Prime Minister of one of the most corrupt countries on earth, we visit first hand the nature and extent of that corruption and the many forms it takes.
Along with this incisive and cynical look at Russia we have to deal with, coincidentally, our own election cycle in America and ask are we ready for that same type of leadership the same type of despotic government riddled with vice, ruled by oligarchs presided over by a smug, egomaniacal emperor of sorts.

But I digress. Vladimir P. is a masterwork, not only in terms of stripping away the screen that protects a country that even now is annexing the Ukraine, invading Syria and laughing in our faces at our own foolishness.

In sum, you will find this book entertaining, comical and absurd as well as scary, not in the sense of monsters although there is one, but in the sense of there but for the grace of God, go we. And it is all true. At least as the reader I feel that way.

Nathan Hill The Nix
September 08, 2016 07:04 AM PDT
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Good afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Nathan Hill, author of The Nix just published on the 30th by Knopf. It has so much prepublication publicity that the press kit I received took me an hour to read. And before it was even released, it has been translated into German, Dutch, French, Spanish/Catalan, Danish, Swedish Norwegian (important), Italian, Finnish Hebrew, Hungarian, Korean, Polish, and Chinese. I mean what the hell is up with that? I can only imagine the feeding frenzy for the movie rights.

So Nathan is an Associate Professor of English at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, from which position he is taking a break in order to pursue his writing (that seems logical to me)

His short stories have been published in The Iowa Review, Fugue, The Gettysburg Review and many others,

He lives in Naples, Florida but spent most of his life in the Midwest.

The NIX is a novel with a roadmap for its epigraph. Which is the story of the blind men and the elephant as originally recounted by the Buddha.

What we as individuals take for reality is not that which others do. It may be true for us but so there are many truths.

And in a more inductive sense, many of us, undiscerning, unrealizing let one drop of water be our universe when that drop can fall into a bucket and that bucket can be poured into an endless sea.

Whether one is lost in a video game, a doppelganger for “real” as opposed to a virtual life, or whether one lives in a past that inhibits growth, that shames or paralyzes future movement, we all live inner lives not necessarily of quiet desperation, but many of the characters in this book sure do.

What make the nix different that other novels that deal with mother-son estrangement, or with the political process in America, or with unrequited love, or with dark secrets, too secret to reveal, or with missed opportunities is that it seamlessly weaves all of these themes into a work that exceeds the sum of its parts. In so doing we find ourselves caught up in a web of words and with a story so resonant, so close to home that when we finish, we as readers have the opportunity and yes the responsibility of reexamining our own lives, sometimes painfully and provide us the Pandora like opportunity to discover our own Nixes.

Nathan Hill The Nix
September 08, 2016 06:59 AM PDT
itunes pic

Good afternoon everyone and welcome to another edition of the Avid Reader. Today our guest is Nathan Hill, author of The Nix just published on the 30th by Knopf. It has so much prepublication publicity that the press kit I received took me an hour to read. And before it was even released, it has been translated into German, Dutch, French, Spanish/Catalan, Danish, Swedish Norwegian (important), Italian, Finnish Hebrew, Hungarian, Korean, Polish, and Chinese. I mean what the hell is up with that? I can only imagine the feeding frenzy for the movie rights.

So Nathan is an Associate Professor of English at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota, from which position he is taking a break in order to pursue his writing (that seems logical to me)

His short stories have been published in The Iowa Review, Fugue, The Gettysburg Review and many others,

He lives in Naples, Florida but spent most of his life in the Midwest.

The NIX is a novel with a roadmap for its epigraph. Which is the story of the blind men and the elephant as originally recounted by the Buddha.

What we as individuals take for reality is not that which others do. It may be true for us but so there are many truths.

And in a more inductive sense, many of us, undiscerning, unrealizing let one drop of water be our universe when that drop can fall into a bucket and that bucket can be poured into an endless sea.

Whether one is lost in a video game, a doppelganger for “real” as opposed to a virtual life, or whether one lives in a past that inhibits growth, that shames or paralyzes future movement, we all live inner lives not necessarily of quiet desperation, but many of the characters in this book sure do.

What make the nix different that other novels that deal with mother-son estrangement, or with the political process in America, or with unrequited love, or with dark secrets, too secret to reveal, or with missed opportunities is that it seamlessly weaves all of these themes into a work that exceeds the sum of its parts. In so doing we find ourselves caught up in a web of words and with a story so resonant, so close to home that when we finish, we as readers have the opportunity and yes the responsibility of reexamining our own lives, sometimes painfully and provide us the Pandora like opportunity to discover our own Nixes.

Liz Moore The Unseen World
July 20, 2016 06:54 AM PDT
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Liz talks about Alan Turing

Lesley Blume author of Everybody Behaves Badly: The True Story Behind Hemingway's Masterpiece The Sun Also Rises
July 05, 2016 07:06 AM PDT
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The making of Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises, the outsize personalities who inspired it, and the vast changes it wrought on the literary world

In the summer of 1925, Ernest Hemingway and a clique of raucous companions traveled to Pamplona, Spain, for the town’s infamous running of the bulls. Then, over the next six weeks, he channeled that trip’s maelstrom of drunken brawls, sexual rivalry, midnight betrayals, and midday hangovers into his groundbreaking novel The Sun Also Rises. This revolutionary work redefined modern literature as much as it did his peers, who would forever after be called the Lost Generation. But the full story of Hemingway’s legendary rise has remained untold until now. - Amazon

The Avid Reader Show is sponsored and produced by Wellington Square Bookshop in Chester County, PA. The Show airs on Mondays at 5PM on WCHE AM 1520.

Please visit our website at www.wellingtonsquarebooks.com

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