Backlisted

Backlisted

The literary podcast presented by John Mitchinson and Andy Miller. Brought to you by Unbound. Visit www.backlisted.fm

Episodes

January 24, 2023 56 min
Welcome to our first Backlisted special of 2023. Today we’re joined by the award-winning novelist and screenwriter Frank Cottrell-Boyce, an official friend of Backlisted, who returns for the first time since his appearance on the Christmas 2021 episode on The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit, one of our most popular shows. These specials are designed to fill the gap until the show proper returns in April. They differ from the usual...
Mark as Played
In memory of the great Carmen Callil, we are replaying the first of her two appearances on Backlisted. Joining Andy and John in this episode is Carmen Callil, the legendary publisher and writer, who is best know for founding the Virago Press in 1972. Once described by the Guardian as ‘part-Lebanese, part-Irish and wholly Australian’, Carmen settled in London in 1964 advertising herself in The Times as ‘Australian, B.A. wants job i...
Mark as Played
December 25, 2022 91 min
Merry Christmas Everyone! This year’s Backlisted Christmas special celebrates Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild, a classic of children’s literature and the childhood favourite of our producer, Nicky Birch. We are joined by the writer Una McCormack and Tanya Kirk, the Lead Curator of Printed Heritage Collections (1601-1900) at the British Library, who are both lifetime Streatfeild fans. Ballet Shoes was an immediate bestseller upon p...
Mark as Played
December 13, 2022 66 min
The Awakening is an American classic, first published in 1899. The novel’s focus is the inner life of Edna Pontellier, a 29 year-old a married woman and mother of two boys, whose husband Léonce is a New Orleans businessman of Louisiana Creole heritage. The book’s notoriety derives from Edna’s refusal to accept the role that American society of the late 19th century has allocated to her. After the controversy that greeted it on publ...
Mark as Played
November 29, 2022 61 min
The Ice Palace or Is-slottet by Tarjei Vesaas is a 20th century classic by one of Norway’s greatest modern writers. First published by Gyldendal in 1963, it went on to win the Nordic Council Literary Prize in 1964. In 1966, it was published in Elizabeth Rokkan’s English translation by Peter Owen who described it as the best novel he ever published. To discuss it we’re joined by friend of the show Max Porter – who’s surprised it is...
Mark as Played
November 15, 2022 69 min
There can be few writers more deserving of Backlisted’s attention than the Irish writer, Maeve Brennan. An adopted New Yorker, Brennan died there in 1993 and was by that time so thoroughly forgotten in her native land, that she received no obituaries in any Irish papers. We are joined by the writers Sinéad Gleason and David Hayden to discuss her collection, The Springs of Affection – subtitled ‘stories of Dublin’ – which was first ...
Mark as Played
This Hallowe’en episode of Backlisted focusses on the collection of ‘uncanny’ stories by Henry James, first gathered together under the title The Altar of the Dead and Other Tales to form the seventeenth volume of the New York Edition of his Collected Works in 1917. We are joined, as ever, by our resident spook-master Andrew Male, and by acclaimed novelist and Henry James aficionado Tessa Hadley. We each choose a story to present a...
Mark as Played
October 17, 2022 71 min
Full Tilt: Ireland to India with a Bicycle by the Irish travel writer Dervla Murphy was first published in 1965 and is the first of Dervla Murphy’s twenty-six books. It's a journal she kept on the 3,500 mile, six-month journey she made by bicycle from her home in Lismore, Ireland to Delhi in India in 1963, Ireland, traversing Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan on her trusty bike, Ros. Joining us to di...
Mark as Played
Roadside Picnic, first published in 1972, is the best-known work of Russia’s most famous modern science fiction writers, Arkady & Boris Strugatsky, together the authors of 26 novels and scores of short stories. To discuss it we are joined by the writer and radio presenter Jennifer Lucy Allan, and the publisher and translator Ilona Chavasse. The book is based on the premise that Earth has been briefly visited by an alien civilis...
Mark as Played
September 19, 2022 85 min
North and South is Elizabeth Gaskell’s fourth novel and considered by many to be her best. It tells the story of Margaret Hale, a principled young middle-class woman from the rural South whose family are obliged to re-settle in the Northern industrial town of Milton. Joining us to discuss the novel’s contemporary relevance, are two new guests: Jennifer Egan, author of A Visit from the Goon Squad and Nell Stevens, author of the memo...
Mark as Played
September 5, 2022 69 min
Authors Jay Griffiths and Geoff Dyer are our guests for a discussion of Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. Annie Dillard was only twenty-nine when her first prose book was published in 1974; it went onto win the Pulitzer Prize for Non-Fiction the following year. To discuss this classic of observational nature writing and spiritual enquiry, we are joined by two writers making their Backlisted debuts: Jay Griffiths, the author of Wild: An Elem...
Mark as Played
August 1, 2022 70 min
The second novel by by literary wunderkind, Helen DeWitt, Lightning Rods is probably the most challenging book we’ve yet featured on Backlisted. Usually described as a satire on American capitalism, it is the diasarmingly upbeat and funny tale of Joe, a struggling salesman, who develops a new office product that he believes serves an urgent need in modern corporate life. Quite what that product is and how it works requires a delica...
Mark as Played
July 18, 2022 78 min
It's sixty-five years since John Wyndham published The Midwich Cuckoos, the fourth in his hugely successful series of science fiction novels that began in 1951 with The Day of the Triffids. Many people’s first introduction to The Midwich Cuckoos is through the classic film from 1960, which was renamed The Village of the Damned and starred George Sanders. We’re joined for this episode by the writer and director David Farr, who ...
Mark as Played
Forty years ago the writer Paul Theroux hoisted his knapsack on his back and set off on a journey on foot around the coast of the United Kingdom; the effects of Thatcherism were being felt in earnest and the Falklands War was in progress. The Kingdom by the Sea, Theroux's grumpy, funny account of this journey, was published the following year (1983) and caused outrage in many of the seaside towns the author had passed through a...
Mark as Played
Novelist Joanne Harris (Chocolat, A Narrow Door) is our guest for a celebration of Titus Groan (1946), Gormenghast (1950) and Titus Alone (1959) by Mervyn Peake, three novels which are often referred to, erroneously, as the Gormenghast Trilogy. With Joanne's expert guidance, John and Andy revisit Peake's visionary work for the first time in decades and are surprised and delighted by what they discover. Also in this episode,...
Mark as Played
Tessa Hadley (Free Love, Late in the Day) joins us for a discussion of The Death of the Heart (1938), the sixth novel by Anglo-Irish novelist Elizabeth Bowen; as you'll hear, Tessa has been reading and rereading Bowen's work since she discovered it in her local library when she was 12 years old. We go deep into the glorious idiosyncrasies (and idiosyncratic glories) of Bowen's style and consider why her reputation has w...
Mark as Played
May 8, 2022 85 min
Our guest is Stephen Fry, writer, actor and polymath, who last week joined John and Andy in person to discuss Oscar Wilde's De Profundis, the essay addressed to Lord Alfred Douglas 'from the depths' of Wilde's incarceration in Reading Gaol in 1897. It has been described by Colm Tóibín as 'one of the greatest love letters ever written'; it is also Wilde's most powerful testament of the sacred duty of the ...
Mark as Played
April 24, 2022 76 min
Publisher Marigold Atkey and journalist Emily Rhodes join us for a discussion of Lessico famigliare, Natalia Ginzburg's novelistic memoir or autobiographical novel, first published in Italy in 1963 and most recently translated by Jenny McPhee as Family Lexicon (Daunt/NYRB). Ginzburg had a long and distinguished career in Italian literature, theatre and politics. This episode explores her fascinating life and asks why her work i...
Mark as Played
Our guests are both new to Backlisted: the legendary publisher, editor, writer Margaret Busby and the award-winning poet, Raymond Antrobus. They join us to discuss the work of the Caribbean writer, Andrew Salkey, in particular his 1960 Hampstead ‘bedsit novel’, Escape to An Autumn Pavement, and his epic poem Jamaica, which explores the historical foundations of Jamaican society and was first published in 1973 by the pioneering pres...
Mark as Played
Our guests are both Backlisted old hands: Professor Sarah Churchwell, Professor in American Literature and Chair of Public Understanding of the Humanities at the School of Advanced Study, University of London and Sam Leith, literary editor of the Spectator. We are discussing the 1966 postmodern novel The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon, by some way his shortest book, but no less complex and intriguing for its relative brevity. S...
Mark as Played

Popular Podcasts

    Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

    Stuff You Should Know

    If you've ever wanted to know about champagne, satanism, the Stonewall Uprising, chaos theory, LSD, El Nino, true crime and Rosa Parks then look no further. Josh and Chuck have you covered.

    The Piketon Massacre

    The most notorious mass murder in Ohio’s history happened on the night of April 21, 2016 in rural Pike County. Four crime scenes, thirty-two gunshot wounds, eight members of the Rhoden family left dead in their homes. Two years later a local family of four, the Wagners, are arrested and charged with the crimes. As the Wagners await four back-to-back capital murder trials, the KT Studios team revisits Pike County to examine: crime-scene forensics, upcoming legal proceedings, and the ties that bind the victims and the accused. As events unfold and new crimes are uncovered, what will it mean for all involved? What will it mean for Pike County?

    Crime Junkie

    If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.

    Morbid

    It’s a lighthearted nightmare in here, weirdos! Morbid is a true crime, creepy history and all things spooky podcast hosted by an autopsy technician and a hairstylist. Join us for a heavy dose of research with a dash of comedy thrown in for flavor.

Advertise With Us

For You

    Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.

    Connect

    © 2023 iHeartMedia, Inc.