Tuesday, August 25, 2009


A few months ago I wrote a post in praise of BBC Radio Four's podcasts, but I'm afraid that I have now discovered something even better: the ABC Book Show.

BBC radio broadcasts some great podcasts, but they represent a small part of the total output and programmes are only available for a measly seven days. I'm sure they have their reasons, but the BBC probably has the greatest audio archive in the world and they should make it more accessible.

In contrast, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation has made every episode of their wonderful book review programme available for downloading. Presented by Ramona Koval, the Book Show is as good as anything I've heard, with intelligent interviewers, fascinating guests and a very cosmopolitan selection of writers.

Ramona Koval is an exceptionally good presenter and when she interviewed M J Hyland recently about This is How, it was clear that she had really read the book and had a number of thoughtful, pertinent questions to ask.

From now on, my drive to work will be accompanied by the archives of The Book Show.


JRSM said...

It is good, isn't it? I have to admit I had no idea they were available for download--there are a number I've missed which I'll be able to find now!

Grey Area said...

There was a very dull and confused explanation as to why they could only offer downloads for 7 days on the Culture Show some time ago - however, there is this:


The Poet Laura-eate said...

Hear hear, re the BBC's mean availability and lack of back catalogue re Listen Again.

But where oh where is the podcast version of this blog?

It would be sublime/encourage the Beeb to raise their game to compete!

of thieves said...

Ramona Koval is my hero. Plus, she's wearing a necklace with a wings pendant. Or is it a merkin? She is a fantastic interviewer: engaged, chivvying and intelligent.

Steerforth said...

Couldn't agree more. I wonder if there are any other bookish podcasts of this quality?

Good news - I've discovered that if I stick a lead from the headphone socket into the microphoneone, I can record any of the hundreds of programme that are availble on the BBC's 'Listen Again' facility.

Laura - you've given me an idea.

Richard - thanks for the link. It's good, but it's still the tip of the BBC iceberg.