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View information about every book we've read in the past thirty years using our Chapter a Day Booklist!


Book cover for Tesla: His Tremendous and Troubled LifeTesla: His Tremendous and Troubled Life by Marko Perko and Stephen M. Stahl

Monday, May 16 through Friday, June 10, 2022. Read by Norman Gilliland.

The enigmatic Nikola Tesla—stalked by his ever-present inner demons—invents the modern world. He tames the mysterious force called “electricity;” dazzles the world with his endless inventions and discoveries; and blazes new paths in science that profoundly impact our daily lives. His thought experiments disrupt scientific norms. He gives us many of the indispensable tools we use today. The world vies for his attention. Yet all the while he keeps his own counsel, as he simultaneously struggles with the challenging consequences of bipolar disorder: flights of manic energy alternating with depressive depths of great despair. Forever seeking to “lift the burdens from the shoulders of mankind.” It would become his lifelong aim, but at what cost to him?

(Prometheus; ISBN-10: 1633887723 / ISBN-13: 978-1633887725)

Theme: Spiegel Im Spiegel, Arvo Part, from "The Calm: Inspired 20th Century Classics", Black Box Classics

Book cover for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

Monday, June 13 through Friday, July 8, 2022. Read by Jim Fleming.

A mysterious beast is attacking ships all over the world. Famous oceanographer Pierre Aronnax is called upon to hunt for the creature. But when the creature attacks the navy vessel pursuing it and Aronnax is thrown overboard, the adventure really begins when he is “rescued” by the reclusive and, likely mad, genius Captain Nemo and his fantastical underwater ship, the Nautilus.

(Public Domain)


NPR's 2021 Book Concierge

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About Jim

Jim Fleming began his career at WPR as a student announcer in the 1960s. In addition to producing and hosting several award winning radio dramas and programs, Fleming also held a number of management positions. Read more

About Norman

Norman Gilliland is the Wisconsin Public Radio host of "The Midday" and "Old Time Radio Drama." He's also the author of "Sand Mansions," and "Midnight Catch."Read more

About Michele

Michele Gerard Good was born in Chicago and raised in northern Wisconsin. After graduating from Ripon College with a degree in theatre, she spent most of her life pursuing an acting career – studying “the Method” at The Actor’s Studio in London, voice with Marni Nixon in New York and...Read more

About Karl

Karl Schmidt was an Emeritus Professor at UW-Extension, and read for "Chapter a Day" off and on for 75 years. Among his other roles at WPR, Schmidt directed "Earplay," a radio drama that comprised much of NPR's programming of that genre during the 1970s. He died in April 2016.Read more

About Susan

Susan Sweeney is an emeritus theater professor at the University of Wisconsin. She has a long history in theater as well as singing and coaching voice and dialects throughout the United States. She has voiced over 20 books as a reader for Wisconsin Public Radio's long-running program "Chapter a Day."Read more

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