Tag Archives: debut

Episode 53 : Interview with author Sarah Penner



“How had I only just learned that happiness and fulfillment were entirely distinct things?”  ~The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner

That’s only one of the many gems in this fascinating debut by Sarah Penner,  and I simply cannot thank her enough for joining me.

I was transported to 18th century England to a time where some women had no choice but to seek out revenge with the help of The Lost Apothecary. I could feel the cobblestone streets beneath my feet and was absolutely spellbound. We spoke about crime and forensics in the 1700s and a whole lot more.

Listeners, you’re in for a treat!

Readers? Even more than that… I’ll quote Sarah Penner with this synopsis of her debut:

“It’s perfect for readers who love:
-secret, hidden alleyways in London
-apothecaries, herbalists, witches, poison
-magical tinctures & spells
-antiquated ephemera like old maps/manuscripts
-unlikely friendships among women
-women exerting control in clever ways.”

So, yes.  Raise your hands, listen to the interview and order this book!


Episode 52: Interview with author Julie Carrick Dalton



“Reading a novel is an act of empathy because you are choosing to give over your world view to somebody else’s world view.” ~ Julie Carrick Dalton

What an incredible conversation with the equally incredible Julie Carrick Dalton.  We could have spoken for hours about so many different things, but most important? Her terrific debut, Waiting for the Night Song.

Julie Carrick Dalton owns a small farm in New Hampshire which serves as the inspiration for this book. She shared her 13-year journey of bringing the story of Cadie and Daniela to fruition.  There are some surprises here as well and it’s such a pleasure for me to be able to bring this interview to all of you.

Synopsis: Cadie returns to her childhood home to confront her estranged best friend and the dark secret they both share and must decide what she is willing to sacrifice to protect the people and the land she loves.

Kim Michele Richardson, bestselling author of The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek calls Waiting for the Night Song, “Smart and searingly passionate…an illuminating snapshot of nature, betrayal, and sacrifices set in the evocative New Hampshire wilderness.”  A review that says it all.

Julie Carrick Dalton recommends, The Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler and Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse


Episode 49: Interview with author Elizabeth Wetmore



I have wanted to host debut novelist Elizabeth Wetmore on Top Shelf for so long, and when it finally happened, I could barely sleep the night before. This episode was such a delight and I could have spoken to her all day. We talked about her amazing debut, VALENTINE, the strong and determined women in the book and maybe, just maybe there is something new in the works. You’ll have to listen here to find out.  VALENTINE made my “Best of list” for 2020, so please, like I always say: give a listen, read the book!

Thank you SO much Elizabeth. The pleasure was all mine.

Elizabeth Wetmore recommends: Memorial by Bryan Washington, Lot by Bryan Washington, and Last One Out Shut Off the Lights by Stephanie Soileau


Episode 48: Interview with author Ashley Audrain



Pushing into 2021 with an incredible debut…

The Push by Ashley Audrain is not to be missed, so book clubs? Start your engines. For this episode we talked about motherhood fears, the origin story of The Push, being on the author side of publishing, and more.  Ashley Audrain, thank you so much for being our first guest of 2021!

The Push is a tour de force you will read in a sitting, an utterly immersive novel that will challenge everything you think you know about motherhood, about what we owe our children, and what it feels like when women are not believed.” ~ from Penguin Random House and I couldn’t have said it any better.

Reserve your copy of The Push here.

Ashley Audrain recommends this title: The Harpy by Mehgan Hunter, check it out!

#givealistenreadthebook

 


Episode 47: Interview with author Greer Macallister



What a terrific sit down with author Greer Macallister!  I’ve been a fan since her debut, The Magician’s Lie. Greer Macallister has the most empowering historical fiction titles that I can hardly wait until she has a new release.  Well, her newest, The Arctic Fury couldn’t be more perfect:  A dozen women join a secret 1850s Arctic expedition―and a sensational murder trial unfolds when some of them don’t come back. That’s some edge of your seat stuff right there. It’s terrific.

We also talked about what’s next for her and boy oh boy, are all you readers in for a surprise, but that’s all you’ll get from me. You’ll just have to listen to the episode. It’s pretty mind blowing!  Thank you so much Greer Macallister for joining me on this episode of Top Shelf at Merrick Library!


Episode 46 Interview with author Susie Yang



Ivy Lin was a thief but you would never know it to look at her. So starts the compelling debut, White Ivy, by my guest for this episode, debut author Susie Yang. 

White Ivy is a coming-of-age novel that is a nuanced exploration of class and race filled with surprising twists and a glimpse into the dark side of a woman who yearns for success at any cost. All I can say is good luck trying to make dinner when you’re halfway through the book!  We had a terrific conversation that included how she got the news about making the NYT Bestseller list, getting the Shondaland treatment, and more! I am thrilled she stopped by to speak with us… thank you so much Susie!

Susie Yang recommends:   The Line of Beauty by Alan Hollinghurst and The Patrick Melbourne Novels by Edward St. Aubyn

Give a Listen, Read the Book!


Episode 44 Interview with author A.H. Kim



What constitutes a good family? You may think you know the answer, but then again, maybe not even for one little second.

Book clubs? Start your engines and grab your copy of A Good Family, the must-read debut by author A.H.Kim.  

Synopsis: Big pharma exec Beth Lindstrom is heading to prison thanks to a high-profile whistleblower law suit.  Beth enlists the help of her sister-in-law Hannah to figure out what happened. All I can say is, think Big Little Lies meets Succession and you have A Good Family.

I cannot thank A.H. Kim enough for sitting down to chat with me about family relationships, white-collar prisons and Fruit Stripe gum…no spoilers!

 


Episode 42 Interview with author James Wade



“There’s a story in my head…” novelist James Wade tells us in this incredible interview about his page-turning historical fiction debut, All Things Left Wild: after a botched robbery, sixteen-year-old Caleb Bentley is on the run with his mean-spirited older brother across the American Southwest at the turn of the 20th century. And boy will Caleb’s moral compass and inner courage be tested.

I could not put this book down. 

What a thrill to talk to James Wade about the book, his writing process, and how he became a writer. Just like his book, this interview is one wild and compelling ride. Hold on to your hats!  A total blast, thanks a million James!

#GiveaListenReadtheBook


Episode 40: Interview with author R.L. Maizes



Let’s hear it for our amazing Episode 40 and let’s hear it for author: R.L. Maizes as we celebrate her debut novel, the incredible, Other People’s Pets.

This novel is not what anyone would think of as a page-turner, but there I was absolutely riveted. I loved the characters, the story, the writing, it was all just a fab five star read for me.  I’m so honored that she sat down with me to talk about her craft, her essays, magical realism and… her pets!  At least listen for that!  Maizes just writes like a dream; what a blast to host R.L. Maizes on this episode.

Other People’s Pets is out July 14th, for heaven’s sake, don’t miss it.  AND, her fabulous book of short stories, We Love Anderson Cooper is out in paperback also on July 14th. What a day!

#GiveaListenReadtheBook

Place you library holds right here: Other Peoples PetsWe Love Anderson Cooper

Other People's Pets: A Novel - Kindle edition by Maizes, R.L. ... R.L. Maizes (Author of We Love Anderson Cooper) 


Episode 32: Interview with Julia Armfield, author of Salt Slow



What can I say about Salt Slow by Julia Armfield? This book was the stand-out for me, or a sit-down, because once I started it, I never left my beach chair. From the very first story, Mantis, to the award winning, The Great Awake, it will be hard to put down. Publisher’s Weekly calls Salt Slow by Julia Armfield, “unsettling, uncanny and an utterly delightful debut.” All true. It’s the first time I’ve covered this genre on Top Shelf and I’m thrilled to bring this interview to you.

One of the things we discussed were our favorites in the genre and Julia recommended Fen by Daisy Johnson, and titles by Sarah Hall.   My go-to authors in this genre are: Clare Beams, Angela Carter, Karen Russell, and Carmen Maria Machado. We also talked Stephen King, but really, who doesn’t?

I was so happy to speak with Julia Armfield about this incredible debut collection, Salt Slow. It hits shelves in the US, October 8, 2019. If you’re in the UK, it’s out already-don’t. miss. it.

Very special thanks to Flatiron Books, you guy rock.

#GiveAListenReadTheBook