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Nancy Pearl

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Courtesy of Andrew Bannecker

Does anyone not know Nancy Pearl?

For years she’s told NPR and KUOW listeners what to read with a kind of care and insight that’s made her a household name. There’s also a decent chance her action figure is on your desk or bookshelf right now. 

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

KUOW's Marcie Sillman speaks with Seattle librarian and author Nancy Pearl about her first novel, "George and Lizzie."

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Despite the allure of technology, librarian Nancy Pearl says picture books still draw in readers of all ages.

She tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about two books in particular: "Roberto the Insect Architect," by Nina Laden and "Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World's Most Famous Bear," by Lindsay Mattick with illustrations by Sophie Blackall.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

In Great Britain, the term "crime fiction" refers to everything from a cozy mystery to a police procedural. Here in the U.S., we divide our crime fiction into separate genres, according to librarian Nancy Pearl.

A mystery starts with the world out of kilter, and ends with everything put to rights again. A police procedural focuses on the nuts and bolts of solving crimes.

And a thriller? Well, as Nancy Pearl told KUOW's Marcie Sillman, a thriller is a page turner, as addictive as potato chips. "You can't stop with just one," says Pearl.

Pearl recommends two thrillers: "The Drifter" by Nick Petrie and "August Snow" by Stephen Mack Jones.

If reading more in 2017 was one of your new year's resolutions, Nancy Pearl is here to help. Every once in a while, the Seattle-based librarian sends host Steve Inskeep a big stack of books. They're generally "under-the-radar" reads — titles she thinks deserve more attention than they've been getting.

This year, the stack includes breathtaking thrillers, a multi-generational crime story, an unforgettable family tale, and more. Pearl tells Inskeep why she loves these novels, and why she thinks you will, too.

KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

If you've been in a quandary over what to give your favorite child this holiday season, fret no more! Nancy Pearl tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about "The Christmas Crocodile," a picture book by Bonny Becker, illustrated by David Small.

KUOW Photo/Bond Huberman

Longtime KUOW listeners know that Nancy Pearl calls herself an armchair historian. She tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about Candice Millard's new book "Hero of the Empire," a chronicle of Winston Churchill and South African's Boer War.

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Nancy Pearl tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about Ian McEwan's newest book, "Nutshell." You may be familiar with McEwan's novel "Atonement," which was transformed into an award-winning film. 

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Award winning short story writer Nina Allan has just published her first novel. Although bookstores and libraries may file it in the science fiction/fantasy section, librarian Nancy Pearl tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman that Allan's book "The Race" is best described as experimental fiction.

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Terry McDonnell spent his career as an editor at an assortment of national magazines, and he's got the dirt of the writers he worked with. Nancy Pearl  tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman you'll find some great stories in McDonnell's essay collection, "The Accidental Life."

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Most of the time, Nancy Pearl loves a good literary thriller. But sometimes, she just likes to chill out with a page turner. Today she tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about a new writer she's just discovered named Becky Masterman, author of a series featuring a retired FBI agent. The book is called "Rage Against the Dying."

Nancy Pearl.
Flickr Photo/KCTS 9

October is prime time to stay inside with a book. Nancy Pearl tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman about a novel that should keep readers happy: "After the Parade," by Lori Ostlund.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Some books are page turners; other require a little more concentration. Nancy Pearl tells KUOW's Marcie Sillman that Carol Black's novel "Orphans of the Carnival" is not an easy read, but the effort pays off in the end.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Marcie Sillman talks with book hugger Nancy Pearl about "Avid Reader" — a title after the book hugger's own heart. It's a memoir by Robert Gottlieb, who worked as editor-in-chief at the publishing houses Simon and Schuster and Alfred A. Knopf before landing at the New Yorker magazine.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about “She Poured Out Her Heart,” by Jean Thompson.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "The Last Samurai" by Helen DeWitt.

Sandbox Radio members (front) Seanjohn Walsh, Lisa Viertel, Katie Driscoll, Eric Ray Anderson (back) Shigeko Calos-Nakano, Lizzy Burton
Photo by Truman Buffett

It’s Sandbox Radio time again on Speakers Forum, with special guest Nancy Pearl. Here’s our presentation of their latest work "The Words and the Bees." 


Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about Katie Roiphe's "The Violet Hour."

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about the novel "Imagine Me Gone" by Adam Haslett.

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "The Color of Lightning" by Paulette Jiles.

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about the novel "Vexation Lullaby" by Justin Tussing.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "Daydreams of Angels," by Heather O'Neill.

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "The Last Painting of Sara de Vos," a novel by Dominic Smith.  

KUOW's Marcie Sillman with book hugger Nancy Pearl.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about Nick Harkaway's novel, "The Gone-Away World."

Washington Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann gestures as he is carried off the field at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C., Nov. 18, 1985. Theismann injured his right leg during second quarter action.
AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about her pick of the week, "The Throwback Special" by Chris Bachelder.

Paul Kalanithi's 'When Breath Becomes Air'
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about her pick of the week, "When Breath Becomes Air," by Paul Kalanithi.

Nancy Pearl's pick: 'This Old Man' by Roger Angell.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Marcie Sillman talks with "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl about "This Old Man," by longtime New Yorker fiction editor Roger Angell. Nancy calls it the perfect book for anybody who reads The New Yorker.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

When book-loving KUOW listeners are at a loss for what to read next, help is just a phone call away – as long as the call is to "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl.

This week, Nancy and KUOW's Marcie Sillman help a listener in Clinton, Washington who loved the "The Bone Tree" by Greg Iles. 

Nancy's picks include: "Time's Witness" and "Uncivil Seasons" by Michael Malone, "Black Water Rising" and "Pleasantville" by Attica Locke, and Angela Flournoy's debut novel, "The Turner House."

Want Nancy Pearl to help pick your next great read? Call 206.221.3663 and tell us about a book you loved – one you wish you could read again for the first time – and we'll patch you through to Seattle's favorite librarian to see if she can guide you to your next book.

Nancy Pearl said you'll learn more than you ever thought possible about mules from this week's reading picks.
Flickr Photo/Greg Westfall (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/sS617i

When KUOW listeners are at a loss for what book to read next, help is just a phone call away – as long as the person picking up the phone is "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl.

This week, Pearl and KUOW's Marcie Sillman help a history buff in Seabeck, Washington who loved Bernard DeVoto's "The Journals of Lewis and Clark."

Pearl recommends "The Oregon Trail" by Rinker Buck and another title by DeVoto, "Across the Wide Missouri."

Want Nancy Pearl to help pick your next great read? Call 206.221.3663 and tell us about a book you loved – one you wish you could read again for the first time – and we'll see if Seattle's favorite librarian can guide you to your next book.

Mermaid
Flickr Photo/AK Rockefeller (CC BY 2.0)/http://bit.ly/20rsa5l

When KUOW listeners are at a loss for what book to read next, help is just a phone call away – as long as the person picking up the phone is "Book Lust" author Nancy Pearl.

This week, Pearl and KUOW's Marcie Sillman help a listener in Friday Harbor follow up on Majia Comella's "The Bay of Mermaids."

Pearl recommends Sarah Addison Allen's "Garden Spells" and "City of Bones" by Cassandra Clare, plus a little Alice Hoffman for good measure.

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