I’ve worked hard to find literary podcasts I enjoy, not always with much success. I count among my favorites Freedom, Books, Flowers, and the Moon, the TLS podcast with Stig Abell and Thea Lenarduzzi (the delightfully nonchalant Lucy Dallas sits in a lot too).
Another I’ve come to enjoy a great deal is The Virtual Memories Show, hosted by the endlessly curious (and fascinating) Gil Roth, who roams far and wide to interview bookish people, authors, critics, librarians, illustrators, comic artists, cartoonists, and other smart and engaging people. Among my favorite so far are those with Michael Dirda (there are three altogether) and Henry Wessells. Recent favorites also include Harold Bloom (surprisingly quiet and elegant, against my expectations) and Alberto Manguel.
I reviewed Manguel’s latest book Packing My Library: An Elegy and Ten Digressions in The Wall Street Journal earlier this year (I reviewed Manguel’s A Reading Diary, A Passionate Reader’s Reflections on a Year of Books in 2004 for The New York Sun).
Manguel talks to Gil Roth about reading to Jorge Luis Borges after Borges began to lose his eyesight, about the art and practice of translation, about propaganda and literature, about owning and storing astounding numbers of books, about democracy and dictatorships, history and memory, about good books by bad people (including Borges), and much more. It is a true delight to hear Manguel in this interview. I enjoin you to listen on your phone or computer if you find the time. You can follow the Virtual Memories Show through iTunes, Spotify, YouTube, RSS, TuneIn, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr, and Flickr, or simply listen below.