We talk with author and journalist Colin Woodard about his new book, "Union: The Struggle to Forge the Story of United States Nationhood." "Union" is a historical study of how a myth of national unity was created and fought over in the 19th century. This included the idea that the United States' national identity was an Anglo-Saxon one, which laid the foundation for the white nationalist movement we see today.

One silver lining of the stay-at-home orders is the chance to read some good books. We talk with some top Maine writers about their recently published works, and hear their recommendations for what to read during this period of isolation--and beyond.

This show is being broadcast live from the Bangor Library.

Read ME is a statewide community reading program that encourages every adult in Maine to read two books recommended by a well-known Maine author. Dozens of Maine libraries participate in this special event. This year’s Read ME culminates on Aug. 29. Best-selling author Tess Gerritsen chose "Paris Was the Place" by Susan Conley and "After the Eclipse: A Mother’s Murder, a Daughter’s Search" by Sarah Perry as the books to be discussed. We will talk with all three authors about their books, their careers, and what it takes to succeed as an author in Maine.

Elena Seibert

Pulitzer Prize-winning author and Maine resident Richard Russo joins us for a wide-ranging conversation about his approach to writing, how his success as a novelist – whose books have been made into television series and films – affects his work, Maine’s literary community and how it inspires him… and his latest book, "Chances Are…," about the complex power of friendship. Russo's eagerly awaited novel comes out the day that he joins us on Maine Calling.

Doing nothing is more than just lazing around. Artist and author Jenny Odell joins us to explain what she means by doing nothing — taking time out of one’s day to engage in an activity without considering whether it’s productive — and why it can be so difficult these days to do it. She’ll also explain how doing nothing can actually be a form of resistance to a world where our value is over determined by our ‘data productivity.’

New York Times best-selling author Sam Kean joins us to discuss his latest book, which explains how, with every breath you take, you literally inhale the history of the world.

Kean will discuss the wilds of our atmosphere, as well as the most astounding patients in neuroscience history, the hidden stories buried in our genes and DNA, the wonders of the periodic table, and life as a writer who attempts to popularize science.

Kean is taking part in the University of New England’s “Connections Lecture Series.”  Click here for more information.

In Silence: A Social History of One of the Least Understood Elements of Our Lives, award-winning,  Maine-based author Jane Brox examines the institution of silence from monastic communion with God to the punitive isolation of inmates. Brox explores the use of silence as both a threat and a tool over time, and our often-fraught relationship with communication and solitude as it has evolved in our digital lives.

Jane Brox, is the author of Brilliant: The Evolution of Artificial Light; Clearing Land: Legacies of the American Farm; Five Thousand Days Like This One; and, Here and Nowhere Else

Underbug tells the fascinating story of the lowly termite–a bug that collectively outweighs human beings by 10 to 1 and consume $40 billion worth of valuable stuff each year.

Lisa Margonelli is an award-winning journalist and author of the national bestseller Oil on the Brain: Petroleum’s Long, Strange Trip to Your Tank. She is based in Maine.

Historian, author and Maine Calling favorite Ken Davis joins us to talk about his latest book.

Kenneth C. Davis is an American historian and author, best known for his “Don’t Know Much About” series of history books.

Penguin Random House

Novelist, nonfiction writer, speaker, political activist; Anne Lamott discusses her new book "Almost Everything: Notes on Hope," a book divided into short chapters that explore life’s essential truths and offers encouragement about the future.

The Soul of America: The Latest Book by Author Jon Meacham

Jul 17, 2018
Gage Skidmore / Wikipedia/Creative Commons

Best-selling author Jon Meacham joins us to explain that, despite our current tumultuous times, the country has been through periods of turmoil before, and how, by looking to examples in the nation’s past, we can better understand our current political climate.

Our Towns: A New Book by Deborah & James Fallows

Jul 16, 2018

Jim and Deb Fallows spent 5 years travelling in the small propeller plane to small towns across America, including Eastport, Maine.  In their new book, they share stories of civic and economic reinvention taking place in parts of the country we often don’t hear much about.

We speak with acclaimed biographer Patricia O’Toole about her new book and why the life and times of Wilson are particularly relevant in today’s world. (O’Toole is a Maine author – she lives in Camden.)

Guest: Patricia O’Toole is the author of five books, including When Trumpets Call: Theodore Roosevelt after the White House, and The Five of Hearts: An Intimate Portrait of Henry Adams and His Friends, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. 


Mar 13, 2014

  Each day people consume a drug derived from a natural insecticide. That drug is caffeine and former MPBN News reporter Murray Carpenter has written a book on the subject titled Caffeinated: How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts and Hooks Us.

Host Keith Shortall speaks with:

Murray Carpenter, author of Caffeinated: How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts and Hooks Us.

"The Country of the Pointed Firs" by Sarah Orne Jewett Edit | Remove