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James McBride on Bringing "The Good Lord Bird" to Life

National Book Award winner James McBride's latest novel "The Good Lord Bird," depicts famous abolitionist John Brown.

The book takes place on the plains of Kansas, where Brown is waging war on slavery.  It concludes with Brown’s famous raid at Harper’s Ferry a few years later.  "I wanted to create a version of him that was accessible to people and that was funny," said McBride.  "Books about American history and particularly about slavery are very rarely funny." 

Tom Hall talked with James McBride about the book in April of 2014, the day before he arrived in Baltimore for the CityLit Festival. The podcast of Hall and McBride's conversation at the CityLit Festival can be heard here

This segment originally aired on April 11, 2014.  

Host, Midday (M-F 12:00-1:00)
Jamyla Krempel is WYPR's digital content director and the executive producer of Wavelength: Baltimore's Public Radio Journey. She collaborates with reporters, program and podcast hosts to create content for WYPR’s online platforms.