WYSO

Vick Mickunas

Host - Book Nook

Vick Mickunas introduced the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1500 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Listen to the Book Nook with Vick Mickunas for intimate conversations about books with the writers who create them.  Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.

Ways to Connect

The Star Wars movie franchise is alive and well after all these years and the physicist and Star Wars aficionado Patrick Johnson decided that it was high time Star Wars fans had a handbook to help them understand the physics that come into play in the films. So he decided to write one.

Lake County, Florida used to be a very dangerous place to live. It wasn't because there was a high crime rate. In fact Willis McCall, the long-time sheriff of Lake County presented more of a hazard to some residents than any criminals ever would. In his book "Devil in the Grove" the author Gilbert King wrote about a horrible injustice that took place there and the crimes that were perpetrated by that corrupt and violent sheriff.

Pamela Wechsler is a former prosecutor who has taken up a new career writing for television and penning crime novels. Her latest book is her third in a series set in Boston. Her protagonist is Abby Endicott, the chief homicide prosecutor for the city. The author is a former prosecutor in Boston so she is writing about matters that she knows rather well.

Gloria Stuart was a movie star in early Hollywood. Back in those days they would have called her a starlet. She left Hollywood and the movie business and began a second career as an artist and a maker of hand-made books. Today her work is in museums.

William T. Vollmann writes some massive books. His current offering is so enormous that his publisher had to split it into two volumes. The first installment is "No Immediate Danger-Volume One of the Carbon Ideologies." Volume Two, "No Good Alternative," will be published in June.

I spoke to Bill Vollmann about the first volume-we had a sobering discussion about this very important book. Vollmann has written this book by taking the approach that he is leaving this text behind for some reader in the future to peruse. A reader who will probably be fairly miserable and living in a world that is far different from the one we know now.

In 1999 I had the pleasure of conducting another interview with Virginia Hamilton. The first time I had Virginia on the program it was a rather unique experience because Virginia had been joined in studio for a joint interview with her husband the poet Arnold Adoff. For this second interview Virginia traveled the half mile or so from her home in Yellow Springs to our studios and I had the opportunity to converse with her again about her incredible body of work.

John Scalzi is probably the best known writer who lives in our area. Here's a review of his latest book that I wrote for the Cox Ohio newspapers:

John Scalzi just published "Head On," the follow-up novel to his 2014 book "Lock In." Scalzi, who resides in the village of Bradford (OH) is full of surprises and this book contains several. The author has recounted how years ago he determined at random whether to write mysteries or science fiction. Science fiction won out. Even so this new book contains elements of a murder mystery.

We did something rather different recently when we recorded a Book Nook program before an audience at the Little Art Theatre in Yellow Springs in conjunction with the Greene County Public Library. Melissa Fay Greene returned to the program to do another interview for her book "The Underdogs: Children, Dogs, and the Power of Unconditional Love." This is the inspirational saga of 4 Paws for Ability in Xenia, Ohio and the woman who founded the organization, Karen Shirk.

Allan W. Eckert was a legendary writer. He lived right in our region in Bellefontaine, but I only had this one opportunity to interview him. It was 23 years ago and he was on book tour for his historical novel "That Dark and Bloody River." The river he referred to in his title was of course, the Ohio River. Eckert was an authority on the early history of our region and he wrote numerous books about it.

In 1996 at the time this interview was recorded Virginia Hamilton was probably the best known author then living in Ohio. I had the opportunity to interview Virginia along with her husband, the poet Arnold Adoff, in conversation together with me. That was a very special day in the Book Nook.

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