Diane Johnson's first novel in eight years deals with an American woman's affair during the Iranian revolution. She joins Fresh Air to talk about writing biographies and screenplays and why it took her so long to finish her newest book.
Boyd's new book, "The Revolution of Little Girls," follows a child coming-of-age in the South in the 60s. (It's published by Knopf). Boyd's the author of two earlier novels, and a collection of essays, called "The Rebel Way of Knowledge."
First, novelist E.L. Doctorow reads from his novel, "Billy Bathgate." (First broadcast March 14, 1989) Then, film critic Stephen Schiff reviews "Billy Bathgate," the film adaptation of E. L. Doctorow's best-selling novel. It stars Dustin Hoffman and Bruce Willis.
True Grit author Charles Portis is the cult writer for people who hate cult writers. He hasn't published a book since 1991, and reviewer John Powers says the short pieces collected in Escape Velocity have been treasured for decades, passed around like samizdat by Portis fans.
As the classic novel celebrates its bicentennial, Paula Byrne's The Real Jane Austen examines some of the key objects in Austen's life and how they reveal a much more cosmopolitan awareness of the world than is commonly credited to her.
The celebration of Philip Roth's career reaches its peak in a new documentary — Philip Roth Unmasked — that will screen on PBS next week as part of the American Masters series. There's no doubt that Roth is a master, and not just an American one, but the film tiptoes around the novelist's dark ferocity.