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American Women novelists

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Jane Hamilton Draws "A Map of the World"

Hamilton's new novel is about a Midwestern farm family whose lives are changed irrevocably by one terrible incident. Her first book, "The Book of Ruth," won the 1989 PEN/Hemingway Foundation Award for best first novel.


A Reworking of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Novelist and professor Valerie Martin. She's been called the "heir apparent to Edgar Allen Poe." She's taken the Robert Louis Stevenson classic tale of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and given it a new twist. Her new historical novel, "Mary Reilly," tells the story of Jekyll's descent into madness from the point of view of Mary, a Victorian maid in Jekyll's household. Mary escaped the squalor and brutality of the slums to become a servant. As she becomes Jekyll's confidant she's once again drawn into the underworld she sought to escape.


Rita Mae Brown on Her Southern Roots.

Novelist Rita Mae Brown is known for her lesbian and "Southern" fiction. She joins the show to discuss her family and growing up in the South. Brown's latest novel is "High Hearts."


Women and Religion with Mary Gordon.

Mary Gordon writes literary fiction that manages to top best-seller lists. Religion plays a large part in her novels, and Gordon grew up Catholic and even considered becoming a nun. Today she has big differences with the church, but still considers herself a Catholic, if only in her mind. Her latest novel "Men and Angels," involves a babysitter driven by religion-tinged insanity.


Marge Piercy's "Braided Lives."

Marge Piercy is a novelist. Her new book is titled "Braided Lives." She joins the show to discuss looking back on one's past, feminism, and her involvement in leftist politics.

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