Commentary airs on alternate Fridays; podcasts available anytime.

Marginalia is an on-air commentary and podcast hosted by KMUW's Beth Golay. Episodes feature author interviews, editorial commentary and other marginalia to enhance the reading experience.

Several of Beth's interviews are included each year in NPR's Book Concierge.

The Marginalia podcast is also available through Apple Podcasts and through Google Play.

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Marginalia: Marie Lu

Nov 9, 2018

With over 2 million books in print, Marie Lu is considered a rock star of young adult literature. Both of her Legend and Young Elites series have spent considerable time on bestsellers lists.

And now Wildcard, the second book in the Warcross/Wildcard duology has been published.

I recently caught up with Lu to talk about the new book, her work in gaming, and her experience immigrating to the United States. Here’s our conversation:

Wildcard by Marie Lu was published by G.P. Putnam's Sons for Young Readers.

Beowulf Sheehan Photography

Author Michael Connelly introduced readers to Detective Harry Bosch in 1992 with the publication of The Black Echo. Twenty-six years and 30-plus books later, detectives from two of Connelly's series are working together for the first time in Dark Sacred Night, including the man who's been there from the beginning.

Kurt Markus

Historian Hampton Sides has written a new book about the Battle at the Chosin Reservoir, an epic clash during the Korean conflict that he calls one of the greatest military survival stories of all time. On Desperate Ground explores the many adversaries facing the First Marine Division in November of 1950: hundreds of thousands of Chinese soldiers, an arrogant Gen. Douglas MacArthur, and extreme weather conditions.

Kit Noble

Historian Nathaniel Philbrick is not a stranger to the sea. But surprisingly, one of the main characters in his books--George Washington--was. But his prejudice against the sea, according to Philbrick, didn’t inhibit Washington’s naval genius.

Marginalia: Markus Zusak

Oct 17, 2018
Elena Seibert

Markus Zusak is the author of several books, but he’s probably best known for The Book Thief, which has sold 16 million copies worldwide, is published in 42 foreign language territories, and has spent over 500 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.

Marginalia: Joe Stumpe

Oct 17, 2018

According to writer and history buff, Joe Stumpe, "early Wichita earned a wicked reputation from newspapers across Kansas thanks to a bevy of madams and murderers, bootleggers and bank robbers, con men and crooked cops." 

Marginalia: Lou Berney

Oct 12, 2018
Brandon Michael Smith

November Road is a thriller set in November 1963, and it begins just before JFK’s assassination. When a mob lieutenant realizes that many of his associates are being eliminated one by one, he speculates not only that the murders are tied to the assassination, but also that he is next.

In November Road, author Lou Berney expands on mob-related conspiracy theories surrounding Kennedy’s death. I recently sat down with Lou Berney at the KMUW studios to talk about November Road and more.

Here's our conversation:

K. Dubiel

Olga Tokarczuk is the author of Flights, winner of the Man Booker International Prize, which is awarded to the best work of translated fiction from anywhere in the world. She shares the prize with the book’s translator, Jennifer Croft. And Flights was chosen from more than 100 submissions.

Tokarczuk has been labeled as one of Europe’s most imaginative writers, and with Flights, new readers in the states are beginning to understand why.

I recently visited with her about Flights and the translation process. Here's our conversation:

Marginalia: Delia Owens

Oct 5, 2018
Dawn Marie Tucker

Delia Owens has written several books, but they are primarily non-fiction, a reflection of the 23 years she spent studying wildlife in Africa. Her new book, Where the Crawdads Sing, is Owens’ first work of fiction. It also takes the reader on a deep dive into nature, but this novel is set in the marshlands of coastal North Carolina.

I recently spoke with Owens about growing up with nature, about how her research informed her fiction, about the nature of sisterhood and more. Here's our conversation:


Marginalia: Rosie Walsh

Oct 3, 2018

In her novel Ghosted, Rosie Walsh writes the story of an extremely capable woman who meets a man, spends an incredible week with him, makes future plans with him, and then he disappears. Initially she believes something happened to him during his planned holiday, except through the marvels of social media, she can see when he is online, and when he receives her texts, and when he starts to write back, and then stops. She's been ghosted, and she doesn't know why.

I spoke with Rosie Walsh about her novel, her writing methods, and what’s next. Here's our conversation: