I’m not giving anything away. You need to tune in to listen to clips from my Top Five interviews of 2019!
It’s the first half of a two-part series where I look back at my favorite interviews from 2019.
We don't live in rational times. These books come the closest to making sense out of our mess.
A sweeping tale of adventure and danger, innovation and corruption, and two women whose lives intertwine in unexpected ways on America’s first transcontinental train trip.
Follow writer Skip Rozin, as he goes from being single to a married father of four, and then joins those other New Yorkers forced to leave the city by taking on adult responsibilities avoided in youth. 
A remarkable true story of life, its extreme challenges and triumph over the ultimate heartbreak.
‘Holding On To Nothing’ is a resonant song of the South, all whiskey, bluegrass, Dolly Parton, tobacco fields, and women who know better but still fall for the lowdown men whom they know will disappoint them." ―Lauren Groff, ‘Florida and Fates and Furies’
This unforgettable debut novel is a sweeping tale of forbidden love, profound loss, and the startling truth of the broken families left behind in the wake of World War I.
In the spirit of Evicted, Bait and Switch, and The Big Short, a shocking, heart-wrenching investigation into America’s housing crisis and the modern-day robber barons who are making a fortune off the backs of the disenfranchised working and middle class—among them, Donald Trump and his inner circle.
From critically acclaimed ‘New York Times’ best-selling author Jami Attenberg comes a novel of family secrets: think the drama of Big Little Lies set in the heat of a New Orleans summer. 
A brilliant, timeless memoir about how the people close to us can break our hearts simply because they have access to them, and the lies we tell in order to justify the choices we make. It’s a remarkable story of resilience, a reminder that we need not be the parents our parents were to us.
Best-selling author Tim O’Brien shares wisdom from a life in letters, lessons learned in wartime, and the challenges, humor, and rewards of raisingtwo sons.
Four children live on an island that is the repository for all the world’s garbage. Garbage arrives, the children sort it, and then they feed it to a herd of pigs. 
To save both democracy and a decent economy, here’s why it’s crucial that Americans elect a truly progressive President.
Does college still work? Is our system of higher education fair? And how can we help more young Americans achieve success? Paul Tough is back with a powerful, mind-changing inquiry into higher education in the United States. 
Books you may have missed. The Booker Prize. Books to check out.
We count down the 21 books high school students should be reading.
The home of The University of Iowa’s famed Writer’s Workshop is a must-see for word-loving travelers.
An insider’s view of life inside the CIA following 9/11, when all the old protocols were off … A revealing and engaging account of life in the shadows.
A mystery linking Manhattan circa 1991 to eastern Afghanistan in 2012, ‘Blue Hours’ tells of a life-changing friendship between two memorable heroines.
Three books that you should be reading in 2019. Crawdad’s, a Sixties summer, and seventy-two virgins.
Devin talks about getting turned down by a crush and offers advice to anyone who might be about to share their feelings with someone else. 1st Person is presented by Urban Outfitters. Music…
Rosbottom masterfully explores the crucial role played by the young people of France, many still in their teens, in resisting the Nazis during World War II.
A middle-aged housewife turned aspiring reporter pursues the murder of a forgotten young woman.
A doorman at a posh apartment building gets lost in the mean New York City streets, battling his demons as he searches for life’s higher meaning.
On September 14, 1969, Private First Class Judy Talton celebrates her nineteenth birthday by secretly joining the campus anti-Vietnam War movement. In doing so, she jeopardizes both the army scholarship that will secure her future and her relationship with her military family. But Judy’s doubts have escalated with the travesties of the war. Who is she if she stays in the army? What is she if she leaves?
Rebel, seeker, traveler, observer, vagabond. Writer and poet Jim Christy has been called all these things and more. Inspired at age twelve after reading Jack Kerouac’s ‘On The Road’ one summer while running wild in the streets of a tough Philadelphia neighborhood, Christy began his life-long habit of following the wind.
With hairpin twists and immense psychological acuity, Kelsey Rae Dimberg’s ‘Girl in the Rearview Mirror’ is as seductive as the glamorous, privileged family at its center—and as cunning.
Don and Rosie are back in Melbourne after a decade in New York, and they’re about to face their most important project.
In the Hamptons, no rules apply, especially in matters of money—and the heart…
‘Dear Scarlet’ is a poignant and deeply personal journey through the complexities of new motherhood, offering hope to those affected by PPD, as well as reassurance that they are not alone.
The New York Times bestselling historical novelist delivers her biggest, boldest, and most ambitious novel yet—a sweeping Victorian epic of lost love, lies, jealousy, and rebellion set in colonial Barbados.
What makes a child successful in life? What about raising a successful student? These questions and more answered in one of the best books on raising children.
The poet, musician, cartoonist, producer and author passed away 20 years ago today, but his art lives on.
When a young woman leaves her family—and the civilized world—to join an off-the-grid community headed by an enigmatic leader, she discovers that belonging comes with a deadly cost, in this lush and searing debut novel.
A newly published comical reference tome is in truth just another entry in the vast southern propaganda mill. It's time to admit the truth about the former confederacy.
A Genius, a Con Man, and the Secret History of the Internet's Rise.
A poignant, dazzling debut novel about a woman who longs to be a mother and the captivating yet troubled child she and her husband take in.
They live a cloistered life, exotic to modern eyes, founded upon privilege and duty, ruled by byzantine and often unspoken laws, haunted by injuries both casual and calculated. Yet within those austere corridors can be found windows of enchantment, unruly love, and a wild sort of freedom, all vanished, it seems, from our time.
A disarmingly funny, thought-provoking, and boldly revealing new book that shows us what it means to be human.
The Hemingway Sisters of Cold River, Missouri are local legends. The sisters couldn’t be more different—or more alike. Now they’re back in town, reunited to repair their fractured relationships.
Digging down to the roots of our lived experience in the world, ‘Time To Tell’ takes us through a journey replete with twists and turns and “aha!” moments. Challenging the obvious, the book asks us to look anew at our perspective of what we naturally take for granted
For the first time in almost ten years of Book Talk on BTRtoday, we hear from children. This week’s episode is “Books by Kids” — an authentic dive into how kids remember, see, and think about reading, writing, and books
The 91st Academy Awards gave way to a wide-range of writing when it came to the Adapted Screenplay category. A string of western frontier short-stories; A Hollywood remake of a remake of a book of a remake; One of America’s greatest novelists; A Memoir of admitted plagiarism; And a story too strange to be fiction. We look into the books that inspired the Screenplays and answer why ‘A Star Is Born’ should not have even been there, and why ‘Black Klansman’ won.
The incredible story of how one woman managed to emerge from darkness, explore her haunted past, and heal herself from mental illness
The story of a family. The story of an empire. The story of a nation.
A vivid catalog of heartache, loneliness, love and joy, The Twenty-Ninth Year is an education in looking for home and self in the space between disparate identities.
Don’t hit on women while they’re working. It’s not going to go the way you want.
It’s the Lunar New Year around the World today, and today we look at the genre and identity of Asian American Literature; its meaning; its history, its purpose, its identity, and six books that represent a wide-range of the genre
Keggie Carew has an unerring instinct for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, of putting her foot in it, and making a hash of things. From the repercussions of a missing purse, to boiling a…
Five must-read books on the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr.
From the author of The Water Dancers and Good Family, an exquisitely crafted novel, set in Ohio in the decades leading to the Civil War, that illuminates the immigrant experience, the injustice of slavery, and the debts human beings owe to one another, witnessed through the endeavors of one Irish-American family
A look ahead at what to expect in January and the first half of 2019 in books, with a special feature on Aaron
'Learning to See’ is a historical novel about Dorothea Lange, the pioneering documentary photographer who captured iconic images of the Great Depression and the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II