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Book Nook: The Great Swindle, by Pierre Lemaitre


Over the years that I have been conducting radio interviews I have had the opportunity to speak to some people who were in unusual locations. Cell phones are to blame. Back in the 1990's I called a woman who was living in a tree.  Julia Butterfly was perched high atop a redwood tree named Luna. A logging company in northern California was planning to chop the tree down. Julia had been living up in the tree for months to keep that from happening!

Buzz Aldrin called in from the train station in Philadelphia. As we chatted about his adventures on the surface of the moon you could hear train departures being announced in the background. The investigative journalist Greg  Palast called in from a moving Amtrak train which was headed to New York from Washington. You could hear the train rattling down the tracks.

These interviews sounded unusual and different. My recent interview with Pierre Lemaitre was another departure. Pierre spoke in French through a translator. About halfway through my high school French began to kick in as I began to understand him much better than I had initially.

This became one of my favorite interviews of 2015. I loved his book. "The Great Swindle" makes a potent indictment of war.  And I loved what he had to say about it. And he said it in French! His interpreter was marvelous, too.

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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.