Podcast

The Waterstones Podcast - Responding to the World

Posted on 21st March 2022 by Mark Skinner

Fiction that speaks about the moment we're living through.

All books respond to the world we live in but in this fascinating episode we speak to four incredible authors who have all written books which speak to something absolutely of this time and very often beyond it. How much has the pandemic changed the way we view the world and each other, what about the impact of technology, and what does the future hold? Featuring Gary Shteyngart, Sequoia Nagamatsu, Jennifer Egan and Ali Smith.

Featured in this week's podcast

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The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Visit from the Goon Squad delivers a stunning tale about ‘externalised’ memory, seductive technologies, and the deeply human quest for real connection, ablaze with emotional and intellectual fire and unfolding through a myriad of interlinked narratives.
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A true tour de force that stands as one of the defining novels of the twenty-first century so far, A Visit from the Goon Squad reaches backwards and forwards in time to relate the troubled stories of a former punk rocker record executive and his tormented female employee through a dazzling array of literary styles.
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A prescient warning of an all-too-plausible future and a spellbinding mosaic of characters who stand as a testament to human inventiveness in the face of catastrophe, Nagamatsu’s ambitious, haunting debut announces the arrival of an astonishing new voice in science fiction.

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Brimming with feeling and humour, Shteyngart’s life-affirming comic masterpiece follows a group of individuals who settle in an American country house in early 2020 to wait out the pandemic.
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After providing near-real-time commentary on #MeToo, Brexit, the refugee crisis and a global pandemic in her dazzlingly original Seasonal Quartet, Ali Smith returns with a luminous novel that explores companionship in its innumerable manifestations, as the world continues to change rapidly.

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