69. Rose Macaulay - Told By An Idiot


In this episode Andy and John are behind the scenes at the Stoke Newington Literary Festival and their guest is the world famous librarian, Nancy Pearl. Nancy was for many years the Executive Director of the Washington Center for the Book at Seattle Public Library, and her book recommendation radio broadcasts made her famous, first in Seattle and then internationally. Building on this with her bestselling books: Book LustMore Book Lust, and Book Crush, Nancy was named 2011 Librarian of the Year by Library Journal. She is the only living librarian (to date) to have an action figure made in her honour. In 2017, she published her first novel, George & Lizzie. The book Nancy will be discussing is Rose Macaulay's Told By An Idiot, first published in 1923 and reissued by Virago in their Modern Classics series in 1983. In this episode Andy also is very excited by Less, the Pulitzer Prize winning novel by Andrew Sean Greer and John enthusiastically recommends Girl With Dove: A Life Built By Books by Sally Bayley.

Books mentioned:

Rose Macaulay - Told By An Idiot (1923); The World My Wilderness (1950); The Towers of Trebizond (1956); Personal Pleasures (1935)
Nancy Pearl - Book Lust; More Book Lust; Book Crush; George & Lizzie
Andrew Sean Greer - Less
George Saunders - Lincoln in the Bardo
Jessamyn Ward - Sing, Unburied, Sing
Sally Bayley - Girl With Dove: A Life Built By Books; The Private Life of the Diary
Lucy Mangan - Bookworm
Francis Spufford - The Child that Books Built
Andy Miller - The Year of Reading Dangerously
Nicholson Baker - U & I
Budd Schulberg - The Disenchanted
Cormac McCarthy - All the Pretty Horses
Grahame Greene - The End of the Affair
Ann Boston (ed) - Wave Me Goodbye: Stories of the Second World War
Sarah LeFanu - Rose Macaulay: A Biography
Constance Babington Smith - Rose Macaulay
Philip Roth - Sabbath's Theater
Nick Hornby - About a Boy
Edward St Aubyn - The Patrick Melrose Novels

Unbound Project Worth Backing:

Jonathan Meades - Pedro & Ricky Come Again

Other links:

Nancy Pearl Action Figure
Dangerous Minds blog on the novels of Richard Allen
Tim Wells - Moonstomp
Andrew Sean Greer on Twitter
Paul Auster on reading
Nancy Pearl's Rule of 50 for dropping a bad book