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The Book Review

New York Times

The world's top authors and critics join host Gilbert Cruz and editors at The New York Times Book Review to talk about the week's top books, what we're reading and what's going on in the literary world. Listen to this podcast in New York Times Audio, our new iOS app for news subscribers. Download now at


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The world's top authors and critics join host Gilbert Cruz and editors at The New York Times Book Review to talk about the week's top books, what we're reading and what's going on in the literary world. Listen to this podcast in New York Times Audio, our new iOS app for news subscribers. Download now at




On Reading ‘Beloved’ Over and Over Again

For readers, a book’s meaning can change with every encounter, depending on the circumstances and experiences they bring to it each time. On this week’s podcast, Gilbert Cruz talks to Salamishah Tillet, a Pulitzer-winning contributing critic at large for The Times, about her abiding love for Toni Morrison’s novel “Beloved” — in which a mother chooses to kill her own daughter rather than let her live in slavery — and about the ways that Tillet’s personal experiences have affected her view of the book. “I was sexually assaulted on a study abroad program in Kenya.” Tillet says. “And when I came back to the United States, I entered an experimental program that helped people who were sexual assault survivors, who were suffering from PTSD. Part of the process was like, you had to tell your story over and over again, because the idea was that the memory of the trauma is almost as visceral as the moment of the trauma. And so … looking at what Morrison does in her novel, she’s dealing with trauma and she’s moving, going back and forth in time. So I actually experienced this on a personal level.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Remembering Martin Amis

The writer Martin Amis, who died last week at the age of 73, was a towering figure of English literature who for half a century produced a body of work distinguished by its raucous wit, cutting intelligence and virtuosic prose. On this week’s podcast, Gilbert Cruz talks with The Times’s critics Dwight Garner (who wrote Amis’s obituary for the paper) and Jason Zinoman (who co-hosts a podcast devoted to Amis’s career, “The Martin Chronicles”) about the life and death of a remarkable figure who was, as Garner puts it, “arguably the most slashing, articulate, devastatingly clear, pungent writer of the last 25 years of the past century and the first almost 25 of this century.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Essential Neil Gaiman and A.I. Book Freakout

Are you ready to dive in to the work of the prolific and inventive fantasy writer Neil Gaiman? On this week’s episode, the longtime Gaiman fan J.D. Biersdorfer, an editor at the Book Review, talks with the host Gilbert Cruz about Gaiman’s work, which she recently wrote about for our continuing “Essentials” series. Also this week, Cruz talks with the Times critic Dwight Garner about “The Death of the Author,” a murder mystery that the novelist Stephen Marche wrote with the assistance of ChatGPT and other artificial intelligence programs. Is A.I. in fact a harbinger of doom for creative writers? Here are the books discussed in this week’s episode: “American Gods,” by Neil Gaiman “Good Omens,” by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett “Stardust,” by Neil Gaiman “Coraline,” by Neil Gaiman “The Ocean at the End of the Lane,” by Neil Gaiman “The Sandman,” by Neil Gaiman “The Hyphenated Family,” by Hermann Hagedorn “Monsters,” by Claire Dederer “The Death of the Novel,” by Aidan Marchine We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Pulitzer Winners

The Pulitzer Prizes were announced on Monday, bestowing one of America’s most prestigious awards in journalism and the arts on writers across a range of categories. Among the winners were three authors who had also appeared on the Book Review’s list of the 10 Best Books of 2022: the New Yorker staff writer Hua Hsu, for his memoir “Stay True,” and two novelists who (in a first for the Pulitzers) shared the prize in fiction, Barbara Kingsolver for “Demon Copperhead” and Hernan Diaz for “Trust.” On this week’s episode, Hsu and Diaz chat with the host Gilbert Cruz about their books and what it’s like to win a Pulitzer. “I wish I had a more articulate thing to say, but it was just truly weird,” Hsu tells Cruz about learning he was the inaugural winner in the memoir category. (Before this year, memoirs were judged alongside biographies.) “It was a thrill, but it was also just truly a weird out-of-body experience.” For Diaz, the Pulitzer announcement came while he was at a fried chicken and waffle restaurant in South Carolina, where he was on tour to promote his book’s paperback release. “I totally lost it,” he says. “I had to go out and, I’m a little bit embarrassed to confess it but I was weeping sitting on the curb. And these three lovely older ladies come by and they ask me, Oh sweetheart, honey, are you OK? I’m not exactly sure what I said, but I shared the good news with them and suddenly all four of us were hugging in the middle of the street. So it was a good moment.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Book Bans and What to Read in May

Book-banning efforts remain one of the biggest stories in the publishing industry, and on this week’s episode of the podcast, our publishing reporters Alexandra Alter and Elizabeth Harris chat with the host Gilbert Cruz about the current state of such attempted bans and how they differ from similar efforts in the past. “It is amazing to see both the upward trend in book bans but also the ways that the process of getting bans has evolved,” Alter says. “This has happened really quickly. … We’ve seen a lot of the book bans that have taken place in the last couple of years coming from either organized groups or from new legislation, which is a big shift from what librarians had tracked in the past, where they would see usually just a couple hundred attempts to ban books each year. And most of those were from concerned parents who had seen what their kid was reading in class or what their kid brought home from the public library. And usually those disputes were resolved quietly. Now you have people standing up in school board meetings reading explicit passages aloud.” Also on this week’s episode, Joumana Khatib takes a look at some of the biggest new books to watch for this month. Here are the books discussed in this week’s episode: “Chain-Gang All-Stars,” by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah “King: A Life,” by Jonathan Eig “Quietly Hostile,” by Samantha Irby “Yellowface,” by R.F. Kuang We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Eleanor Catton on ‘Birnam Wood’

Eleanor Catton’s new novel, “Birnam Wood,” is a rollicking eco-thriller that juggles a lot of heady themes with a big plot and a heedless sense of play — no surprise, really, from a writer who won Britain’s prestigious Man Booker Prize for her previous novel, “The Luminaries,” and promptly established herself as a leading light in New Zealand’s literary community. On this week’s podcast, Catton tells the host Gilbert Cruz how that early success affected her writing life (not much) as well as her life outside of writing (her marriage made local headlines, for one thing). She also discusses her aims for the new book and grapples with the slippery nature of New Zealand’s national identity. “You very often hear New Zealanders defining their country in the negative rather than in the positive,” she says. “If you ask somebody about New Zealand culture, they’ll begin by describing something overseas and then they’ll just say, Oh, well, we’re just not like that. … I think that that’s solidified over time into this kind of very odd sense of supremacy, actually. It’s born out of an inferiority complex, but like many inferiority complexes, it manifests as a superiority complex.” A word of warning, for listeners who care about plot spoilers: Toward the end of their conversation, Catton and Cruz talk about the novel’s climactic scene and some of the questions it raises. So if you’re a reader who prefers to be taken by surprise, you may want to finish “Birnam Wood” before you finish this episode. We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


David Grann on the Wreck of the H.M.S. Wager

David Grann is one of the top narrative nonfiction writers at work today; a staff writer at The New Yorker, he has previously combined a flair for adventure writing with deep historical research in acclaimed books including “The Lost City of Z” and “Killers of the Flower Moon.” His latest, “The Wager,” applies those talents to a seafaring tale of mutiny and murder, reconstructing the fate of a lost British man-of-war that foundered on an island off the coast of Patagonia in the 18th century. On this week’s podcast, Grann tells the host Gilbert Cruz that one of the things that most drew him to the subject was the role that storytelling itself played in the tragedy’s aftermath. “The thing that really fascinated me, that really caused me to do the book,” Grann says, “was not only what happened on the island, but what happened after several of these survivors make it back to England. They have just waged a war against virtually every element, from scurvy to typhoons, to tidal waves, to shipwreck, to starvation, to the violence of their own shipmates. Now they get back to England after everything they’ve been through, and they are summoned to face a court marshal for their alleged crimes on the island. And if they don’t tell a convincing tale, they’re going to get hanged. I always think of that lovely line from Joan Didion, where she said we all tell ourselves stories in order to live — but in their case, it was quite literally true.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


The Enduring Appeal of Judy Blume and Gabriel García Márquez

It’s been more than 50 years since the publication of Judy Blume’s middle-grade novel “Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret,” a coming-of-age tale that has become a classic for its frank discussion of everything from puberty to religious identity to life in the New Jersey suburbs. Despite its grip on generations of readers, though, the book has never been adapted for film — until now, in a screenplay written by the director Kelly Fremon Craig and opening for wide release on April 28. To mark the occasion, our editor Elisabeth Egan appears on this week’s podcast and talks with the host Gilbert Cruz about the novel’s importance to her own 1980s New Jersey girlhood. “For me, Judy Blume was one of those writers — and I know that all readers have them — who just explained the world and talked about things that we did not talk about in my family,” Egan says. “I loved her constant theme of moving to New Jersey, as my family did when I was 6 years old. Most of all, I really loved her books for young adolescents, especially ‘Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret.’ It’s one of those books that I remember where I was sitting when I read it, and it kind of had a profound effect on my life.” Also on this week’s episode, Miguel Salazar talks about the Nobel-winning Colombian author Gabriel García Márquez, and offers his list of essential books for readers who are eager to approach García Márquez’s work but unsure where to start. “He is a mammoth figure, not just across Colombia but across Latin America. He was the face of the boom in literature in Latin America in the mid- and late 20th century,” Salazar says. “García Márquez still today remains today kind of the point of reference for American readers, and a lot of readers across Latin America, to understand their region. I think he’s most people’s first author when they turn to the region to understand it through literature.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


What We're Reading

As you might guess, the folks who work at the Book Review are always reading — and many of them like to juggle three or four books at once. In this episode, Gilbert Cruz talks to the editors Tina Jordan and Greg Cowles about what they’ve been reading and enjoying, and then, in honor of National Poetry Month, interviews Cowles — who, in addition to about a million other things, edits the Book Review's poetry coverage — about how he came to love it. “I’ve always loved good sentences and surprising language,” Cowles says. “A novel has room — and is even required — to have some slack language in it. If every sentence was perfectly chiseled and honed and used surprising metaphors, you wouldn’t have the patience to stick with it. But poetry, because it’s so distilled, requires that; any slack language stands out and would ruin a poem.”


Victor LaValle Talks About Horror and ‘Lone Women’

After a spate of more or less contemporary horror novels set in and around New York, Victor LaValle’s latest book, “Lone Women,” opens in 1915 as its heroine, Adelaide Henry, is burning down her family’s Southern California farmhouse with her dead parents inside, then follows her to Montana, where she moves to become a homesteader with a mysteriously locked steamer trunk in tow. “Nothing in this genre-melding book is as it seems,” Chanelle Benz writes in her review. “The combination of LaValle’s agile prose, the velocity of the narrative and the pleasure of upended expectations makes this book almost impossible to put down.” LaValle visits the podcast this week to discuss “Lone Women,” and tells the host Gilbert Cruz that writing the novel required putting himself into a Western state of mind. “There was the Cormac McCarthy kind of writing, which is more Southern," he says, “but certainly has that feeling of the mythic and the grand. But I also got into writers like Joan Didion and Wallace Stegner, even though that’s California: the feeling of the grand but also spare nature of the prose. So it was less about reading, say, the old Western writers — well, they were Western writers but not writing westerns, if that makes sense. And then, if I’m honest, I also was very steeped in, my uncle used to make me watch John Wayne films with him when I was a kid. And so I felt like that was another kind of well that I was dipping into, in part for what I might do but also what I might not do.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


What We're Reading

It should come as no surprise that writers and editors at the Book Review do a lot of outside reading — and, even among ourselves, we like to discuss the books that are on our minds. On this week’s episode, Gilbert Cruz talks to the critic Jennifer Szalai and the editors Sadie Stein and Joumana Khatib about what they’ve been reading (and in some cases listening to) recently. For Szalai, that includes a novel she’s revisiting some two decades after she first read it: Kazuo Ishiguro’s “The Remains of the Day,” which she’s listening to this time around as an audiobook. “It has been wonderful,” she says. “The narration is great and it’s told in the first person, which I think is actually an ideal feature — at least for me, when I’m listening to an audiobook. It feels a bit like a conversation or a story, a personal story, that’s being related to me. And it’s been so long since I read the book that there are certain details that I hadn’t remembered that keep coming up. And so it’s been a nice experience. I’m going through it slowly. I sort of listen to it in little snatches here and there.” Here are the books discussed on this week’s episode: “The Remains of the Day,” by Kazuo Ishiguro “Look at Me,” by Anita Brookner “The Pigeon Tunnel,” by John le Carré “Run Towards the Danger,” by Sarah Polley “The Color of Water,” by James McBride “The Dirty Tricks Department,” by John Lisle “Spare,” by Prince Harry We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Books About the Oscars

The 95th Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday evening in Hollywood, with top contenders including “Tár,” “Women Talking” and “Everything Everywhere All at Once.” For readers, it’s a perfect excuse to revisit two recent books about the Oscars. On this week’s episode, the host Gilbert Cruz talks to our critic Alexandra Jacobs about “The Academy and the Award,” by Bruce Davis, a former executive director of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and “Oscar Wars,” by the journalist Michael Schulman, which she recently wrote about for the paper. “We like to think that this is a ceremony, a process about merit. But I think that has been proven wrong time and time again,” Cruz says. “It’s like a political election,” Jacobs says, “or a sports contest that turns on a single play or call. These books really reveal that. It’s just interesting how many times Oscar — as one of these books puts it — gets it wrong. Like, the movie that won isn’t the one that you remember, or isn’t the one that time judges as the best one. That’s fascinating to see. … You might ask, What does this ceremony matter if it’s not even adjudicating properly? But I think it matters because — look, it’s the electronic hearth around which we gather. I think it matters because people crave communal entertainment experiences.” We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Revisiting 'Wisconsin Death Trip,' 50 Years Later

It's been 50 years since Michael Lesy's influential cult classic "Wisconsin Death Trip" was published. A documentary text of found material, the book gathered prosaic historical photos of Wisconsin residents from the turn of the 20th century and paired them to haunting effect with fragmentary newspaper archives from the same time period reporting on often garish deaths — what our critic Dwight Garner, evaluating the book for its anniversary, called "horrific local news items that point, page by page, toward spiritual catastrophe. Nearly every person in it looks as if they are about to be struck by lightning." Garner appears on the podcast this week to talk with the host Gilbert Cruz about "Wisconsin Death Trip" and the resonance it still holds in the culture. "It evokes what long nights felt like in America," he says, "before there was electricity and radio, and before — if your child was very sick, there were no antibiotics. And maybe your child was dying. And anxiety of course could not be treated then by antidepressants or other kinds of pills. And people quote-unquote went mad more often than we'd like to think. And there were bankruptcies, people threw themselves in front of trains. There are all kinds of suicides in this book. And it just makes you wonder what was happening, what kind of spiritual crisis was going on in Wisconsin in the 1890s." Garner is a fan of unusual documentary literature, he tells Cruz, and in "Wisconsin Death Trip" he sees not only a portrait of a vanished small-town America but also a portrait of vanished journalism. "Newspapers in America have been gutted out," he says. "You don't have small-town papers like this in many places anymore that have real staffs who report on this stuff. There's a kind of reporting in this book that is sort of the 'crazy death' that we don't read about anymore: the person at the sawmill who gets tangled up. Maybe you'll read about it somewhere. But it was more of a staple of small-town news reporting then. Even papers like The New York Times did a lot of that ... But in general what Lesy is after is stuff that almost suggests, as I said before, a kind of spiritual crisis. So many people having breakdowns. And it just makes you realize that our nostalgia for the good old American heartland, there's a real dark shadow there. And in many ways it's false nostalgia. And this book is one of those correctives that puts you in touch with the night side of life in this way that few books of documentary that I've read actually do." We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


On Reading "A Wrinkle in Time"

Some books find us at the right age and in the right frame of mind to lodge an enduring hold on our imagination; these are the books we turn to again and again, which become the cherished classics of our personal canon. On this week's episode, the Book Review's thriller columnist and writer at large Sarah Lyall talks to the host Gilbert Cruz about Madeleine L'Engle's 1962 novel "A Wrinkle in Time," in which the protagonist and her younger brother set out to rescue their father from the supernatural embodiment of evil that is holding him captive. Lyall first read the book when she was 9 years old and returned to it repeatedly throughout her childhood. "I used to write my name in it every time I read the book," Lyall says. "I probably had 10 signatures there. And I could watch my signature change, I could try new types of signature. I tried cursive and I tried capitals, and I put a little flourish next to it." Lyall says that what first drew her to "A Wrinkle in Time" was the book's "fantastic heroine," Meg: "She's really smart, but sort of unkempt. She has messy hair, she has glasses, she has braces, people think she's weird. ... But what really happens in the book that I think resonated with me, that I realize now, is that it's a book about two children who've lost their father. And I read the book quite soon after my father died. He died when I was 8. And it was a really lost time. And I think what mostly appealed to me about the book was the notion that you actually could get your father back. And that you as the girl, as the girl who felt so clueless, actually had means within yourself to pull yourself together and be brave enough to do it." We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Public Libraries, and Profiling Paul Harding

At a time when public libraries and librarians are facing budget headwinds and sometimes intense political scrutiny for the roles they play in their communities, the Times photo editor Erica Ackerberg last fall dispatched photographers to seven libraries in cities, suburbs and rural areas across the country to document what daily life in those public institutions really looks like in today's world. The resulting photographs, published this week with an accompanying essay by the Book Review editor Elisabeth Egan, revealed libraries to be essential community centers and far more than the hushed and beloved book depositories you may remember from your childhood. On this week's podcast, Egan and Ackerberg talk to the host Gilbert Cruz about how their article came together, and what libraries mean in their lives and in society at large. "Books are what draw you to the library, but there are so many other things happening there that have nothing to do with books," Egan says. "The modern library encompasses 20 other things based on the needs of its community. ... What the library needs shows you what the community it's in is all about." Ackerberg says: "I was actually thinking about one of the libraries, the Northtown Library in Chicago — they call themselves an 'intergenerational community hub,' and I felt like that kind of sums up all these libraries. Every generation, and everybody from all communities are welcome there, and hang out there, and spend time there. It's a warm place to be." Also this week, MJ Franklin, an editor at the Book Review, talks to Cruz about his recent profile of the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Paul Harding, whose new book is "This Other Eden." "What I was interested in was, What is Paul Harding up to now?" Franklin says. "What is his writing process? He has such a distinctive and singular voice, that I wanted to get closer to that." We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


"Lives of the Wives: Five Literary Marriages"

Admit it: It's fun to look at other people's marriages — and all the more fun if those marriages are messy. In a new group biography, "Lives of the Wives: Five Literary Marriages," the author Carmela Ciuraru peers into some relationships that are very messy indeed: the tumultuous marriages of Kenneth Tynan and Elaine Dundy; Roald Dahl and Patricia Neal; Kingsley Amis and Elizabeth Jane Howard; Radclyffe Hall and Una Troubridge; and Alberto Moravia and Elsa Morante. As Ciuraru's title suggests, the book focuses especially on the role — and toll — of being a wife, stifling one's own creative impulses for the sake of a temperamental artist. On this week's podcast, Sadie Stein — an editor at the Book Review, who commissioned the literary critic Hermione Hoby to write about Ciuraru's book for us — talks with the host Gilbert Cruz about "Lives of the Wives." "They're all complicated people," Stein says. "I don't want to oversimplify it. Everyone knows you can't see inside anyone else's marriage. But these couples, you can see a little more. And in some cases, a little more than maybe you want to." "It's a very gossipy book," Cruz says. "And I, to my own embarrassment, was not as up on 20th-century European literary gossip as maybe I should have been. So a lot of this stuff came as a total surprise, total shock to me. ... It's so juicy, but it also made me feel bad in a certain way." And that, we can all agree, is good. We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


A Look Ahead at the Season's Big Books

How do you define a "big book"? It might be a new offering from a beloved author or a deep dive into a timely subject or a story that has generated unusual enthusiasm among editors and other early readers: One way or another, these are the books that build "buzz" and create momentum in the weeks and months before their publication. On this week's podcast, the Book Review's editor, Gilbert Cruz, talks with Tina Jordan, the deputy editor, about the books they're most looking forward to this season, including new fiction from Salman Rushdie, Eleanor Catton and Victor LaValle, and nonfiction from Matthew Desmond, Claire Dederer and David Grann. Among other things, Cruz and Jordan discuss cancel culture, spoilers from "Macbeth" and the concept of what's known in publishing circles as a "make book." "A 'make book' is a book a publisher has usually, although not always, spent a great deal of money for and earmarked a lot of money for a marketing campaign," Jordan says. "In other words, they are going to get the news out about this book. You are going to hear about it." The books discussed on this week's podcast are: "Victory City," by Salman Rushdie "Birnam Wood," by Eleanor Catton "Pineapple Street," by Jenny Jackson "Poverty by America," by Matthew Desmond "Lone Women," by Victor LaValle "Monsters," by Claire Dederer "The Wager," by David Grann "The Covenant of Water," by Abraham Verghese "Oscar Wars," by Michael Schulman We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


The Critics’ Picks: A Year in Reading

Last week’s podcast featured members of The New York Times’s Books staff discussing the Book Review’s picks for the best books of 2022. The paper’s staff book critics participated in that selection process — but as readers inevitably do, they also cherished a more personal and idiosyncratic set of books, the ones that spoke to them on account of great characters or great writing, surprising information or heartfelt vulnerability or sheer entertainment value. On this week’s podcast, our critics Dwight Garner, Jennifer Szalai and Alexandra Jacobs discuss the books that stayed with them throughout 2022. We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


The 10 Best Books of 2022

Heads up! The Book Review podcast returns with a new episode this week, recorded Tuesday during a live event in which several of our editors and critics discussed the Book Review’s list of the year’s 10 Best Books. (If you haven’t seen the list yet and don’t want spoilers before listening, the choices are revealed one by one on the podcast.) In addition to the 10 Best Books, the editors discuss on this episode some of their favorite works from the year that didn’t make the list. Here are those additional books the editors discuss: The Passenger and Stella Maris, by Cormac McCarthy Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin Avalon, by Nell Zink If I Survive You, by Jonathan Escoffery We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to


Bringing Down Harvey Weinstein

For the next few months, we’re sharing some of our favorite conversations from the podcast’s archives. This week’s segments first appeared in 2019 and 2020, respectively. In their best-selling book “She Said” — the basis for the Maria Schrader-directed film of the same title, currently in theaters — the Times reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey recount how they broke the Harvey Weinstein story, work that earned them the Pulitzer Prize, led to Weinstein’s 2020 conviction on felony sex crimes and helped solidify #MeToo as an ongoing national movement. When the book was published in 2019, Twohey and Kantor were guests on the podcast and discussed the difficulties they had faced in getting women to speak on the record about Weinstein’s predation. They also said that their coverage of workplace sexual harassment would not end with Weinstein: “Our attitude is that you can’t solve a problem you can’t see,” Kantor told the host Pamela Paul. “Megan and I can’t adjudicate all of the controversies around #MeToo, but what we can continue to do is bring information to light in a responsible way and uncover this secret history that so many of us are still trying to understand.” Also this week, we revisit Neal Gabler’s 2020 podcast appearance, in which he talked about “Catching the Wind,” the first volume of his Ted Kennedy biography. (The second and concluding volume, “Against the Wind,” has just been published.) “I approached this book as a biography of Edward Kennedy, but also, equally, a biography of American liberalism,” he said at the time. We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to