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Best of the Book Nook: To End a War, by Richard Holbrooke


I don't usually get nervous before an interview. I have found that if I have read the book and I'm well prepared that my nerves are usually not an issue. I wasn't nervous before my interview with Donald Trump. When I interviewed Ohio Governor John Kasich last year I felt totally relaxed. Perhaps that was because I had interviewed him before? I wasn't nervous before I interviewed Charlton Heston. Even though he had a reputation for being somewhat stern I wasn't concerned about that.

Now in the case of Richard Holbrooke I was a bundle of nerves. He had a reputation as a fierce negotiator. And I was going to be talking to him about his historic role as the chief architect of the Dayton Peace Accords. Our conversation would become a part of the historical record. It was probably a good thing that I felt worried about it. Fortunately, I felt like I was well prepared for the task.

He was very pleasant. He seemed delighted to be speaking to me about his memoir "To End a War." It didn't hurt that our studio is just a few miles down the road from Wright Patterson Air Force Base where Richard Holbrooke had just a few years before our conversation been responsible for keeping the Serbs and the Bosnians and the Croats and the Bosnian Serbs at the negotiating table until they reached an agreement that ended the war in the former Yugoslavia.

Richard Holbrooke died a few years ago. Our conversation that day is now a small part of that history.

The Book Nook on WYSO is presented by the Greene County Public Library with additional support from Washington-Centerville Public Library,  Clark County Public LibraryDayton Metro Library, and Wright Memorial Public Library.

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.