When we are collecting together reviews of books, we often try to find a common theme (you can write catchier titles for your blog posts, if nothing else). And sometimes trying to find a theme between books is a fool's errand: hey, they're just different, get over it.
But for this Monday's BBC Radio Oxford Afternoon Bookclub the theme was easy: heroism. Six different books, all of them about featuring (and in one case, written by) heroes, young and old, classic and anti-.
You can listen to the programme until 19 May 2014 here - fast-forward to approximately 1 hour and 9 minutes (although, if you want to grab your hairbrush and air guitar, start the show a few minutes earlier, and rock out to Boston's 'More Than A Feeling'. to get you in the mood).
We're reviewing Terry Hayes' 'I Am Pilgrim', Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's sublime 'Americanah', the explosive expose of the North Korea leadership in 'Dear Leader' by Jin-Sung Jang, Holly Goldberg-Sloan's quirky yet powerful 'Counting by 7s' and European publishing sensation 'The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair' by Joel Dicker.
I'm also raving about my favourite book of the year so far, 'Tigerman' by Nick Harkaway. Nick is coming to Abingdon on June 11 for an event with Mostly Books which we are officially announcing tomorrow, but in the meantime, listen to what I have to say about this blisteringly original contemporary novel at about 1 hour and 41 minutes...
(And if this link has expired, take a look at our reviews of 'I Am Pilgrim' and Joel Dicker's novel on our 3-4-Friday spot a couple of week's ago.)