The usual literary titans as well as a new crop of young scribblers top the summer reading list 2000. In The Human Stain Philip Roth turned his disgust over the Clinton-Lewinsky scandal into a rant about American PC-ness and overzealous morality, while Saul Bellow eulogized his late friend, the cultural critic Alan Bloom, in his controversial new novel, Ravelstein. Michael Ondatje returned to his homeland, Sri Lanka, and the result is a haunting tale of love and loss in Anil’s Ghost.
In two new fictional biographies, Joyce Carol Oates got inside Marilyn Monroe’s head, while Anchee Min figured out what it was like to be Madame Mao. Some of the hot new literary voices are Zadie Smith from London and Dave Eggers from New York. For laughs, David Sedaris moved to Paris just so he could write a book poking fun at the French. And guess what, the 4th Harry Potter book is on its way.
(Hosted by Christopher Lydon)
Ron Charles, book editor of Christian Science Monitor
Elizabeth McCracken, author of The Giant’s House.