For more than a year and a half, the Speaking Volumes project has brought 90.5 WESA listeners weekly conversations about books and reading with Pittsburghers from all walks of life.
As Speaking Volumes moves from a weekly series to a more occasional segment, host and producer Josh Raulerson shares his recent reads with 90.5 WESA's Larkin Page Jacobs.
Michael Chabon, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh
Set in industrial Pittsburgh in the mid-eighties, Michael Chabon's breakthrough coming-of-age novel chronicles the last summer of Art Bechstein's youth. Art meets the witty and beautiful Arthur Lecomte, who then introduces Art to the equally stunning Jane, her boyfriend, the legendary Cleveland, and worldly, exotic, and slightly eccentric Phlox. In the course of one summer, this band of colorful friends guides and thwarts Art in surprising ways as he confronts himself, his family, his sexuality, and the heartache of growing up.
Lawrence Wright, Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief
A clear-sighted revelation, a deep penetration into the world of Scientology by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Looming Tower, the now-classic study of al-Qaeda’s 9/11 attack. Based on more than two hundred personal interviews with current and former Scientologists—both famous and less well known—and years of archival research, Lawrence Wright uses his extraordinary investigative ability to uncover for us the inner workings of the Church of Scientology.
At the book’s center, two men whom Wright brings vividly to life, showing how they have made Scientology what it is today: The darkly brilliant science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, whose restless, expansive mind invented a new religion. And his successor, David Miscavige—tough and driven, with the unenviable task of preserving the church after the death of Hubbard.
Meg Wolitzer, The Interestings
From bestselling author Meg Wolitzer a dazzling, panoramic novel about what becomes of early talent, and the roles that art, money, and even envy can play in close friendships.
The summer that Nixon resigns, six teenagers at a summer camp for the arts become inseparable. Decades later the bond remains powerful, but so much else has changed. In The Interestings, Wolitzer follows these characters from the height of youth through middle age, as their talents, fortunes, and degrees of satisfaction diverge.