All posts by Francesca Rheannon

About Francesca Rheannon

Francesca Rheannon is an award-winning independent radio producer. In addition to hosting Writer's Voice, she's a freelance reporter for National Public Radio and its affiliates. Recipient of the prestigious Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award for reporting on substance abuse issues for her news series, VOICES OF HIV, produced for 88.5 WFCR public radio in western Massachusetts. She is also finishing a book on Provence (PROVINCE OF THE HEART) and working on a memoir of her father, THE ARGONAUTS.

Podcast

Kimball Taylor THE COYOTE’S BICYCLE & Richard Cahan UN-AMERICAN

Kimball Taylor talks about his book The Coyote’s Bicycle: The Untold Story of 7,000 Bicycles and the Rise of a Borderland Empire. It shows how human ingenuity and the humble bicycle are defeating the most expensive border barrier the US has ever built.

Then, it’s the 75th anniversary of the decree ordering the mass incarceration of Japanese-Americans during World War II. Richard Cahan tells us about his book Un-American: The Incarceration of Japanese Americans During World War II. It’s a collection with text of Images by Dorothea Lange, Ansel Adams, and other government photographers. Continue reading

Podcast

Nathan J. Robinson, TRUMP: ANATOMY OF A MONSTROSITY

Nathan J. Robinson talks about his book Trump: Anatomy of a Monstrosity. It examines why Trump won; what the press, pundits and Democratic Party got wrong; and how they can get it right next time.

Also, Parneshia Jones reads her poem “What Would Gwendolyn Brooks Do? Continue reading

Podcast

Brad Gooch, RUMI’S SECRET & Samuel Bercholz, A GUIDED TOUR OF HELL

Brad Gooch talks about his new biography Rumi’s Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love. Then, we’ve all heard of near-death experiences — going through a dark tunnel toward a brilliant loving light. But what if your near-death journey is to the nether regions instead? Buddhist publisher and author Samuel Bercholz tells us about his graphic memoir, A Guided Tour of Hell. Continue reading

Web Extras

Samuel Bercholz, A GUIDED TOUR OF HELL (Full Interview)

Samuel Bercholz
Hell is other people, it’s been said, but Samuel Bercholz says that’s wrong. Rather, it’s our illusion that we are separate from other people and indeed from all sentient beings that condemns us to hell. He knows. He’s been there. He tells the story of his near-death experience and sojourn in Hell in his graphic memoir, A Guided Tour of Hell. Continue reading

Podcast

Wesley Lowery, They Can’t Kill Us All & Frederick Clarkson on “Dystrumpian” Theocracy

Journalist Wesley Lowery talks about his acclaimed book, They Can’t Kill Us All: Ferguson, Baltimore, and a New Era in America’s Racial Justice Movement. Then Frederick Clarkson of Political Research Associates discusses Betsy de Vos and the Trump administration’s theocratic vision for America. Also, we hear Danez Smith read her poem C.R.E.A.M. Continue reading

Web Extras

Sarah van Gelder, The Revolution Where You Live (full interview)

Sara van Gelder
Yes! Magazine is almost unique: a publication with positive stories about change, rather than the steady diet of gloom and doom that was the usual reading fare. Sarah van Gelder, is a cofounder of Yes!

But even someone who has been bringing stories about solutions instead of just problems to the public can get depressed sometimes, looking around that the enormous challenges we face in this world and this country. From economic to environmental meltdowns, the crises are overwhelming.

But her new book, The Revolution Where You Live, is filled with inspiring stories of ordinary Americans working together to confront power, take it back and make their communities better. The issues they confront range from threats to their land and water, workplaces closing down, poor access to healthy and adequate food and housing — and more.

From Native American reservations to the midwestern Rust Belt to the Northeast to the deep South, The Revolution Where You Live has stories that spark ideas and inspire hope.

Podcast

Tools For Activists: Ralph Nader, Breaking Through Power & Sarah van Gelder, The Revolution Where You Live

Ralph Nader tells us how build a movement that can bridge left and right to promote real democracy. His new book is Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think.

Then, Sarah van Gelder of Yes! Magazine tells us why she set out on a 12,000 mile odyssey around America to find models for grassroots action. Her book is The Revolution Where You LiveContinue reading

Web Extras

Web Extra: Voices from the January 15 Writers Resist event in New York City

Writers all around the nation gathered on January 15 to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday in a spirit of resistance to the incoming administration of Donald J. Trump.

The national event was called Writers Resist. In New York, Francesca traveled to the New York Public Library at 42nd Street to mingle with a crowd of more than 2,000 gathered to hear writers read from works of resistance by themselves and others at a podium set up between the iconic library lions. Continue reading

Podcast

Muslim Women’s Voices: Amani Al-Khatahbeh & Susan Abulhawa

Amani Al-Khatahbeh talks about her new book, Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age. It’s about her experience growing up female and Muslim in America after 9/11 and how that led her to create muslimgirl.com, an online magazine by and about Muslim women.

Then we re-air our 2016 interview with Susan Abulhawa about her novel of a Palestinian family, The Blue Between Sky and WaterContinue reading

Podcast

Thomas Frank, LISTEN, LIBERAL & New Fiction Picks

Thomas Frank talks about his book Listen, Liberal. It’s a scathing look at what’s wrong with the Democratic Party and how it got to the disastrous place it’s in right now. Then we share some our of favorite recent fiction. Continue reading

Podcast

WV Best of 2016 & A Story For New Year’s

2016 is passing into history. The New Year is just around the corner. And it’s time for a year-end review. In this week’s show, we play excerpts from some of our Top Ten of 2016. Find links to the entire interviews below.

Then, Francesca reads her story about New Year’s Day in Provence. Continue reading

Podcast

Ani Tuzman, THE TREMBLE OF LOVE & Terry Tempest Williams, FINDING BEAUTY IN A BROKEN WORLD

Ani Tuzman talks about her novel based on the life of the 18th century Jewish mystic, the Baal Shem Tov. Its called The Tremble of Love. Then, we re-air an excerpt from our 2008 interview with Terry Tempest Williams about her book, Finding Beauty In A Broken World.   Continue reading

Podcast

Francine Prose: MR. MONKEY & READING LIKE A WRITER

Writer Francine Prose talks about her acclaimed new novel, Mr. Monkey. It’s about art, ambition, childhood, aging, and love — and a very bad children’s musical. Then, we replay our 2006 interview with Prose about her book on writing, Reading Like A Writer.   Continue reading

Web Extras

What You Need To Know: Field Guide To The Democracy Movement

In this edition of What You Need To Know, we talk with Frances Moore Lappé, author of the iconic Diet For A Small Planet and founder and director of The Small Planet Institute, and her colleague Adam Eichen about their new Field Guide to The Democracy Movement. Continue reading

Podcast

Nicholas Kardaras, GLOW KIDS: How Screen Addiction Is Hijacking Our Kids

We spend the hour on an issue that should concern every parent: the growing evidence that the dominance of digital tech is threatening our kids’ development, causing an addiction crisis that science is just beginning to understand.

Addictions expert Dr. Nicholas Kardaras talks about his book, Glow Kids: How Screen Addiction Is Hijacking Our Kids-and How to Break the Trance. Continue reading