Books

John Dos Passos Coggin joins us today.  Coggin is an author and political strategist, and he's written a biography, Walkin’ Lawton, about Lawton Chiles, who was one of Florida’s most beloved politicians.  As a candidate, Chiles walked across the Sunshine State and earned his nickname.  In this interview, we discuss why so many Floridians loved Chiles.

Halloween is a day for ghost stories, but if you're a skeptic, don't fret. As the late Alabama storyteller Kathryn Tucker Windham assured her listeners, tales of restless spirits are for everybody.

"I collect ghost stories," Windham said. "Now, the nice thing about ghost stories is that you don't have to believe in ghosts to enjoy hearing a good ghost story."

Kerry Howley teaches creative nonfiction at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and she’s written articles and essays for The New York Times Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Reason and The Atlantic.  Her debut book, Thrown, is literary nonfiction about mixed martial arts fighting, philosophy and a search for transcendence.

Over 5,000 Americans have died fighting in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. And, over the past 12 years, more than 2,000 soldiers have committed suicide.

One military family experienced both of those horrors — losing one son in combat and one to suicide. Journalist Yochi Dreazen's new book, The Invisible Front: Love And Loss In An Era of Endless War, tells the true story of the Graham family and two events that would forever change the very fabric of their world.

Tom Kanon joins us to discuss two intertwined, oft-overlooked military conflicts: The War of 1812 and the Creek War.  Kanon is an author and an archivist for the Tennessee State Library in Nashville.  His new book is Tennesseans at War, 1812–1815: Andrew Jackson, The Creek War, And The Battle of New Orleans.

Drew Magary's novel The Postmortal explores what might happen if scientists discovered a cure for aging.

In this dystopian sci-fi story, governments initially outlaw the cure; many people obtain it and use it anyway, and the world soon faces overcrowding and increasing tensions between immortals and "organics" who remain mortal.

Alabama-based The Ardent Writer Press recently published Dollface, a crime thriller set in Chattanooga.  The novel centers on Moses Palmer, a cop who runs afoul of his boss and the city's political powers as he tracks a serial killer.  Dollface is J.D. Frost's first novel, and he joins us for a conversation about it.

Novelist and Miami Herald columnist Carl Hiaasen writes with passion and purpose about the state he loves. His latest book, Bad Monkey, is an offbeat murder mystery set in Key West.

Originally broadcast June 13, 2013.

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Transcript

George Derryberry joins us to talk about his book Path Of Valor: A Marine’s Story.

In 1962, Lee Reynolds, a Marine, was on a work detail at Camp Lejeune, destroying old military equipment.  He discovered an old canteen with an inscription scratched on the surface:

SURIBACHI TAKEN I’M

               ON IT. KILLED 3 JAPS

               IWO JIMA ROUF GO

               MOVING ON TO CAVES

Patrick Johnston is a self-described “soccer junkie.” A soccer coach at the University of the South in Sewanee, he has been to every World Cup since Mexico in 1986 and wrote the book The Odyssey of a Soccer Junkie about his experiences.  He was our guest on Around and About a few weeks ago to talk about his book detailing his adventures in pursuit of tickets and a place to sleep wherever the World Cup has been played in the past 25 years.

Ellen Phillips writes the Consumer Watch column for the Chattanooga Times Free Press, which appears on Sundays.  She's also written two books: Shocked, Appalled, and Dismayed!: How to Write Letters of Complaint That Get Results and Fight Back and Win!

Chattanooga-area author Tim Champlin's first few novels were published in the early 1980s.  Writing mainly Westerns, he's now penned more than thirty-five books.  In this extended interview, he discusses his long career.  Many of his novels originally published in paperback or hardcover are being re-issued as e-books.

“[I]n the last one hundred years,” Janisse Ray writes in The Seed Underground: A Growing Revolution to Save Food, “94 percent of seed varieties available at the turn of the century in America and considered a part of the human commons have been lost.”

Her book explains why so many seed varieties have vanished, and how this loss could pose serious environmental dangers.

Keith Robinson's Island of Fog series first launched in 2009.  Aimed at children ages 9 and up, the books have found a following among adult sci-fi/fantasy fans as well.

The protagonist, Hal Franklin, is a twelve-year-old shapeshifter who can turn into a dragon.  Along with his friends, he must keep an uneasy peace between humans and mythical creatures such as dragons, ogres, and centaurs.

For several decades, the World Cup soccer games were hosted alternately by countries in South America and Europe. So it’s perhaps appropriate that the closing games of this year’s contest are between two giants from South America and Northern Europe. The question of whether the final game will pit South America against Northern Europe will be answered this afternoon when Argentina faces the Netherlands in the second of the two semi final games.

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