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Tonight, a conversation with Jeff Siger, author of An Aegean April, the 9th book in the Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis Mystery Series. Feb. 16, 2018

February 15, 2018

 

The beautiful Greek island of Lesvos, birthplace of the poet Sappho, and for centuries an agrarian paradise famed for anise-flavored ouzo and tasty sardines, sees its serenity turn into chaos as the world watches boatloads of refugees daily flee onto its shores from Turkey across the narrow Mytilini Strait.

Mihalis Volandes is one of Lesvos’ elite, the patriarch of a storied shipping clan. He’s weathered many changes in his long life, and when a government policy accelerates the surge of refugees onto his island, he rises to prominence in relief efforts he sees as growing increasingly ineffectual.

One evening, after working to stir up support for his breakthrough plan to strike at the heart of the lucrative refugee trafficking trade, he returns to his mansion in darkness—only to fall victim in his own garden to a swishing sword.

A refugee-turned-local-aid-worker is found at the scene, splattered with Volandes’ blood, and swiftly arrested by island police. Case closed—or would be, if young Ali Sera were not working with SafePassage, an NGO (non-government organization), headed on Lesvos by American Dana McLaughlin. McLaughlin is having none of Ali’s arrest. Within hours the phone rings in the Athens office of Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis, and she’s requesting that Kaldis take over the investigation.

Volandes was a prominent citizen and the crime particularly gruesome. Could it be terrorism or something else? But whether Ali is guilty or framed, Andreas can’t ignore a powerful motive for the murder. Volandes’ daring plan, if implemented, would soon shut down the cash-generating refugee-trafficking pipeline between Turkey and Lesvos.

And so, we’re off on a nail-biting ride with Kaldis and his team through Byzantine island politics, deteriorating diplomatic relations, and a world on fire with intrigues and more brutal deaths.

This ninth Andreas Kaldis thriller once again links modern Greece to its ancient past, the powerful grip of myths upon its people, and cutting edge issues of societal change affecting our world at large.

From the Poisoned Pen Press catalog

 

I think this will be the seventh time Jeff and I have had the chance to talk about the release of his newest Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis mystery. An Aegean April is a great read.

CLICK HERE FOR information about Jeff from the Poisoned Pen catalog.

CLICK HERE FOR An Aegean April information from Amazon.

CLICK HERE FOR Jeff’s website.

 

CLICK HERE FOR more information about the Open Mic tomorrow night at The Hudson Valley Writers’ Center.

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Tonight a conversation with Emily Wilson, translator of a beautiful new edition of Homer’s The Odyssey. Feb. 1, 2018

February 1, 2018


When I was eight years old, my primary school put on a production of a (much-shortened) Odyssey, complete with costumes, song, and dance. The play starred the cute troublemaker in my class as Odysseus, the headmaster of the school as Polyphemus (the one-eyed monster outwitted by his tiny opponents), and me in pigtails as the goddess Athena.

It was a turning point in my life.

from Emily Wilson’s Translator’s Note for The Odyssey

One of the first things I usually ask all my guests on Graffiti is what I call “The life-path” question: “How have you gotten to where you are today?” Or: “Was there something—an event, maybe—that made you want to become a classicist?”

In many cases their first response is that there was no “turning point”, but when pressed (and I do press) there’s almost always “something”—as shown here in Emily’s case—that made them choose the path they eventually ended up taking.

Please tune in tonight at 7pm to my radio program Graffiti to listen to my conversation with Emily Wilson on Hellenic Public Radio/CosmosFM, WNYE, 91.5 fm. Or listen on-line at the CosmosFM website. Or use the TuneIn app on your smart device.

ALSO: Please be aware that Emily will be at The Hudson Valley Writers’ Center in Sleepy Hollow, NY, tomorrow night—Friday, February 2, 2018—to talk about her wonderful new translation of The Odyssey. For more information please call the Center at 914.332.5953 or go to the website for ticket information. SEATING IS LIMITED!

CLICK HERE for the publisher’s page for this translation of Homer’s The Odyssey.

CLICK HERE for a variety of press information concerning The Odyssey.

CLICK HERE for A Translator’s Reckoning With the Women of the Odyssey an article by Emily Wilson for The New Yorker (December 8, 2017).

CLICK HERE for Emily’s wikipedia page.

GRAFFITI: A Look back on the programs of 2017. January 11, 2018

January 11, 2018

images-22018!

tumblr_oxc0g1kh6i1qa7n48o1_250I’m still finding it hard to believe that I’m now writing 2018 onbestiary-reading-e-vite everything. Where did 2017 go?

Well here’s a look back on some of the shows I did during the past year. Overall, though I didn’t do as many new shows as I would have liked, I do think it was a good year for GRAFFITI.

Tune in at 7 pm tonight to listen to a collection of clips from five (six if time permits) of 21C_Women_AncientGreekTragedythe shows I did in 2017. Hellenic Public Radio/CosmosFM, WNYE, 91.5 fm. Or listen on-line tumblr_omsaq55feV1qa7n48o1_250at the CosmosFM website. Or use the TuneIn app on your smart device.

Tonight you’ll be hearing from: Alisa KwitneyProfessor Karen Van DyckNiki Kapsambelis, Dean Kostos and Dr. Katherine Schwab. If there’s time I’ll sneak in a few minutes of the conversation I had with Panio Gianopoulos back in October.

CLICK HERE for more information about Emily Wilson’s new translation of The Odyssey.

CLICK HERE for more information about Ms. Wilson’s appearance at The Hudson Valley Writers’ Center on February 2, 2018.

CLICK HERE for the Nitra Gallery.

 

Tonight a conversation with Alexandra Symeonidou about her book entitled: Nightmares in the Saudi Arabian Desert: Autobiography (The Saudi Nightmare Trilogy Book 1). Dec. 7, 2017

December 7, 2017

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That strange dream, the one with the black cat, that I had while still an air hostess and floating on oceans of happiness, was now beginning to become clear to me. The black cat was a symbol for what came into my life to knock everything over, smash everything to pieces, turn my happiness into unhappiness, my joy into sorrow, white into black… At that moment I became a strong believer of fate, kismet, everyone’s inescapable destiny. And yet, I didn’t want to let this belief sink in. I would not give up. I would fight tooth and nail for my own ideals. I had done nothing wrong, although my karma indicated otherwise. But I would change that fate around. I would take my risks and fight my battles…

From: Nightmares in the Saudi Arabian Desert

 

It seems very appropriate to me that the evening after TIME Magazine selected “The Silence Breakers” to be their Person of the Year for 2017 that I should be having a conversation with Alexandra Symeonidou about her autobiography: Nightmares in the Saudi Arabian Desert.

In the book she tells of her marriage to a man from Saudi Arabia who then, with the help of his family, makes Alexandra’s life unbearable and very nearly unlivable. It is a story of 51dUKxvOV3L._UY200_fear, courage, unimaginable abuse and the love of a mother…actually the love of two mothers. One mother—her husband’s—who added to the abuse and another—Alexandra’s own mother—who helped save her from it.

Please tune in tonight at 7pm to my radio program Graffiti to listen to my conversation with Alexandra Symeonidou on Hellenic Public Radio/CosmosFM 41yO-9AlakL._UX250_WNYE, 91.5 fm. Or listen on-line at the CosmosFM website. Or use the TuneIn app on your smart device.

Click Here for the link to the Kindle edition of Nightmares in the Saudi Arabian Desert on Amazon.

Click Here for some more biographical material on Alexandra.

Click Here for the wikipedia page for “ME TOO”.

Click Here for the TIME Magazine on-line article about their selection of “The Silence Breakers” as their Person of the Year for 2017.

Click Here for the TIME Magazine video: “The Silence Breakers” The Person of the Year for 2017.

 

Tonight a conversation with Panio Gianopoulos about his new book of stories entitled: How to Get into Our House and Where We Keep the Money. Oct. 26, 2017

October 26, 2017

Panio Gianopoulos is the author of the story collection, How to Get Into Our House and Where We Keep the Money, and the novella, A Familiar Beast.

His stories, essays, and poetry have appeared in Tin House, Northwest Review, Salon, The Rattling Wall, Chicago Quarterly Review, Big Fiction, The Brooklyn Rail, Catamaran Literary Reader, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. A recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Award for Non-Fiction, he has been included in the anthologies The Bastard on the Couch, Cooking and Stealing: The Tin House Non-Fiction Reader, and The Encyclopedia of Exes.

from Panio’s website

Tonight I have the good fortune of having a conversation with Panio Gianopoulos about his wonderful collection of stories: How to Get Into Our House and Where We Keep the Money.

Please tune in tonight at 7pm to my radio program Graffiti to listen to my conversation with Panio Gianopoulos on Hellenic Public Radio/CosmosFM, WNYE, 91.5 fm. Or listen on-line at the CosmosFM website. Or use the TuneIn app on your smart device.

Click Here for Panio’s Website.

Click Here for the Four Way Books page for How to Get Into Our House and Where We Keep the Money.

Click Here for Panio’s video “I’ll Be Your Fever” directed by Molly Ringwald.

Click Here for his interview with Sean Howe author of  “Marvel Comics: The Untold Story”.

Click Here for his poem: “Forests, Diction, and Other Things That Will Not Help”.

Click Here for Panio’s wikipedia page.

Tonight I’m having a conversation with Dean Kostos about his newest collection of poetry entitled: Pierced by Night-Colored Threads. October 5, 2017

October 5, 2017

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I can’t remember how we met or when we met but suffice it to say that I’ve known Dean Kostos for a good many years now. We’ve had many on-air conversations over the years 6568_100187266664341_100000192032972_2920_2332084_nand tonight’s program will be centered around his newest book of poetry: Pierced by Night-Colored Threads. But instead of me babbling about it here’s a snippet from a wonderful review by Ron Kolm in the on-line magazine, Sensitive Skin:

But Dean’s work is also muscular; it moves with a great gusto, and he uses rhymes the way Spoken Word devotees or rap musicians do, to speed things along. The poem ‘Honi the Circle-Drawer’ jumps from ‘sapphire’ to ‘choir’ and then ‘spires’ and ‘lyre.’ All good words; none of them cheap, none of them wasted. For sheer strength, check out these lines from ‘View from the Country of Setting Sun.’

Half of Janus: Past Face

Scans history’s ruins, dimmed

in extinguished
sun. A hand clasps

a crown encircling
an incinerated skull.

tumblr_oxc0s37rgf1qa7n48o1_250Powerful stuff.

 

Please tune in tonight at 7pm to my radio program Graffiti to listen to my conversation with Dean Kostos on Hellenic Public Radio/CosmosFM, WNYE, 91.5 fm. Or listen on-line at the CosmosFM website. Or use the CosmosFM TuneIn app on your smart device.

CLICK HERE for Dean’s website.

CLICK HERE for Ron Kolm’s review in the On-line magazine SENSITIVE SKIN.

 

 

No show…but lots to write about. Including Anna Paidoussi and the tables being turned on me. September 28, 2017.

September 28, 2017

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In a perfect universe tonight would be a radio show night for me but ANTHOULA KATSIMATIDIS, my colleague at the radio station and host of the program Color Your Life that alternates with my program, Graffiti, on Thursday nights, asked if we could switch tumblr_owx6nhbbuv1qa7n48o2_540Thursdays. And so we have. That isn’t to say that there’s no news and no stories to share this week. But let’s start with Anna Paidoussi and 40 Years Music & Friendship.

I’ve known Anna all the way back to her days with Annabouboula. What’s Annabouboula you 4777356ask? First off it’s a Greek expression meaning a mixed-up noise, or confusion. Secondly, it’s the name of a great musical group of the late 80’s and early 90’s that road the wave of World Music to great artistic success. I was fortunate enough to have the group on air with me back when I first started doing my show.

UnknownAnna has one of those voices that shakes pillars yet brings tears to the eyes of those fortunate enough to hear it.

Anna’s concert is this coming Sunday, October 1 at 5pm at the Kefalos Society of America; 20-41 Steinway Street, Long Island City, Call 718-545-4900 for Tickets and information. By the way George Sempepos and George Stathos are also going to be on stage on Sunday. Both are former Annabouboula-ians. Hmmm, could this signal the beginning of something?

31doqs7yywl-_ux250_Now for turning the tables. Sunday night at 7pm (Yes, you’ll have to rush from the concert and “fly” home to listen) I’ll be interviewed by John McMullen on The johnmac Radio Show/Podcast. After 25 years of having conversations with dozens upon dozens—maybe even hundreds—of 715388interesting people I won’t be the one asking the questions. John McMullen will venture where no person has gone before…or at least he will on Sunday night when the tables will truly be turned. I have to admit to equal portions of trepidation and excitement. Let’s hope I can be half as interesting as the folks I’ve had the good fortune to talk to over the past quarter century.

CLICK HERE FOR the Annabouboula at wikipedia.

CLICK HERE FOR more info on Annabouboula.

CLICK HERE FOR information about ANTHOULA KATSIMATIDIS (Yikes! She ran off with my night!)

CLICK HERE FOR more information about World Music.

CLICK HERE FOR a “taste” of Anna’s voice with Annabouboula.

CLICK HERE FOR the Annabouboula “page” at Amazon.

CLICK HERE FOR John McMullen’s biography.

CLICK HERE FOR John McMullen’s books available at Amazon.

CLICK HERE FOR the link you’ll need to hear our conversation on Sunday night.