Bookmark the Blog: Interviews


Reading Group Choices Q&A with Blair Hurley

Blair Hurley explores Buddhism, Boston, faith and power in her debut novel.

blair hurleyIn her novel The Devoted, Blair Hurley tells the story of Nicole Hennessy, a student of Zen Buddhism who comes under the influence of her powerful master — and struggles to escape. Blair answered some questions from Reading Group Choices about her book, her Boston and Catholic upbringing, her role as a teacher, and how we come to terms with our pasts.

Reading Group Choices: The main character, Nicole, moves from being a student of Zen under a powerful master to a teacher of others.

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Reading Group Choices Q&A with Anne Nesbet

Anne Nesbet cracks history wide open in her latest novel set behind The Iron Curtain

Anne Nesbet

Anne Nesbet recently took the time to answer some questions from Reading Group Choices. Her book Cloud and Wallfish is featured in our 2019 Guide.

RGC: Noah and Claudia’s nicknames, Cloud and Wallfish, are unique and feature creative word-play. Did you consider any other nicknames for Noah and Claudia when writing the book? What made you decide on “Cloud” and “Wallfish”?

Anne Nesbet: I just looked back at my first file names for what eventually became Cloud and Wallfish,

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Reading Group Choices Q&A with Megan Stielstra

Powerful new essays on fear, creativity, art, faith, and justice in Megan Stielstra’s latest collection.

megan stielstra (photograph by Joe Mazza)Megan Stielstra stopped by 702WI recently to read from and discuss her new collection of essays The Wrong Way to Save Your Life. She also spoke to us about everything from Inspector Gadget to Zoe Keating, and the book that made her cry in the back of a cab.

702WI: What book changed your life?
Megan Stielstra: There are many, but I’m going to say Chronology of Water by Lidia Yuknavitch.

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Book Group Store Tour: Women and Children First

Women & Children First | Chicago, IL

Women and Children First

To say that Women & Children First is just an independent bookstore is only the beginning of the story. Opened in Chicago in 1979, the store will celebrate 40 years next year and has maintained its place as one of the largest and well-known feminist bookstores in the country.

More than its wide selection of children’s books, literary journals and zines, and LGBTQ fiction and nonfiction, it serves as an inclusive space and haven for the community.

(And they were awarded an honorary street name!)

In 2014,

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Reading Group Choices Q&A with Robert Kurson

Robert Kurson writes a real-life thriller in his newest work of nonfiction, Rocket Men

Robert KursonRobert Kurson recently gave a reading at our homebase in Madison, 702WI, and kindly took the time to answer a few questions. His newest book, Rocket Men, tells the riveting inside story of three heroic astronauts who took on the challenge of mankind’s historic first mission to the Moon.

702WI: What book changed your life?
Robert Kurson: The Denial of Death by Ernest Becker

702WI: What book did you most recently recommend to someone else?

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Reading Group Choices Q&A with Julia Fine

Julia Fine

Julia Fine’s newest book of literary fantasy is a darkly-funny, striking debut

Julia Fine recently visited Wisconsin to read and discuss her work with an audience. Julia also kindly took the time to answer our Q&A after she shared part of her book.

702WI: What book changed your life?
Julia Fine: Atonement by Ian McEwan.

702WI: What book(s) are coming out this year that you’re looking forward to reading?
JF: Everything Under by Daisy Johnson. 

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