Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz – Dr. Mütter’s Marvels
Medicine / October 29, 2015

October 29, 2015 – In this special, Halloween episode, we’re traveling back to the days before the American Civil War, when doctors would take their scalpels to fully awake patients — the pre-microbial era when the causes of common diseases remained a mystery, and when oil lamps and flammable clothing combined to engulf a staggering number of people in flames. This, was the age of monsters. Yes, monsters. Not costumed Groovie Goolies, but human beings so scarred and broken, that they often longed for death. And so they were called… monsters. Enter the brilliant surgeon who gave these monsters hope, and made it his life’s work to piece their lives back together. His name, was Dr. Thomas Dent Mütter. Poet and author Cristin O’Keefe Aptowitcz tells the story of his amazing medical breakthroughs in Dr. Mütter’s Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine. Cristin is an award-winning writer and the author of seven books. You can visit her website, and follow her on Twitter @COAptowicz. We’re also giving away two tickets to the Mütter Museum in Philadelphia on our Facebook page, courtesy of the author. To enter, just listen to the show, visit…

Jordan Harbour’s Twilight Histories
Fiction / October 26, 2015

October 26, 2015 – What if John Wilkes Booth’s gun had misfired? And what if we could blast off to a Mars colony founded by the Carthaginians, or head 250,000 years into the past when a race of giants dominate Africa? Writer and archaeologist Jordan Harbour, explores stories like these at the Twilight Histories podcast. And like a David Lynch film, things keep getting weirder. The Twilight Histories is a podcast, Jordan says, that should be listened to in the dark. So turn out the lights, lower the brightness on your smart phone, and enjoy our upcoming interview with Jordan Harbor… if you dare. Podcast: Download (Duration: 40:31 — 37.1MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

H5F: Harold Holzer – Lincoln and the Press
American Presidents , History in Five / October 23, 2015

October 23, 2015 – Today we’re going to hear from Harold Holzer, one of America’s leading authorities on Abraham Lincoln’s life and the politics of the Civil War era. His book is, Lincoln and the Power of the Press: The War for Public Opinion. Mr. Holzer shows us an activist Lincoln through journalists who covered him from his start through to the night of his assassination — when one reporter ran to the box where Lincoln was shot and emerged to write the story covered with blood. Remember to subscribe to the History Author Show on iTunes, like our iHeartRadio page, or make us appointment listening on your Android device, so you don’t miss an installment of History in Five Friday. It’s the perfect way to kick off your modern weekend… with people from the past.         Podcast: Download (Duration: 6:41 — 6.1MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

David O. Stewart – Madison’s Gift
American Presidents / October 19, 2015

October 19, 2015 – On this episode, you’ll meet five legends — George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, James Monroe, and Dolley Madison — as viewed through their relationships with James Madison. Often overlooked in death as he was in life (and having the White House burned out from under him in the War of 1812 didn’t help), David O. Stewart reveals a founding father and president uniquely adept at what we today call “networking.” The book is Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships that Built America. Just as Gen. Washington was indispensable in winning the war, so was Madison indispensable in winning the peace and setting up the first self-governing republic since Rome. David O. Stewart is also president of the Washington Independent Review of Books. His other books include: The Wilson Deception (A New Fraser and Cook Mystery). The Summer of 1787: The Men Who Invented the Constitution. American Emperor: Aaron Burr’s Challenge to Jefferson’s America.   Additional books discussed on this episode:           Podcast: Download (Duration: 49:26 — 45.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

H5F: The Political Genius of James Madison, David O. Stewart
American Presidents , History in Five / October 16, 2015

October 16, 2015 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster — kicking off your modern weekend, with people from the past. Today, historian David O. Stewart focuses on James Madison, Father of the Constitution and fourth president of the United States. Overlooked in death as he was in life, Madison was the indispensable man in peace as General George Washington was in the Revolutionary War. On Monday, October 19, 2015, we’ll share an all-new interview with David O. Stewart on his new book, Madison’s Gift: Five Partnerships That Built America. Don’t miss it! Additional books discussed on this episode:           Podcast: Download (Duration: 5:35 — 5.1MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Simon Read – Winston Churchill Reporting
World Leaders / October 12, 2015

October 12, 2015 – On this episode, we’ll visit a key period in Winston Churchill’s life, half a century before World War Two. In the late 1800s, Churchill chased adventure in the Sudan, South Africa, India and Cuba, filing dispatches that helped build his resume, and fill his empty wallet. Simon Read describes a Winston Churchill who’s part Indiana Jones, part Ernie Pyle, and part Audie Murphy. It’s hard to overstate just how important these years were to creating the Churchill who grew into the Greatest Briton. His command of the English language, his views of war, his respect for enemies and ideas about creating a lasting peace through victory, all started here. You can follow Simon @SimonReadBooks on Twitter, or visit for more on this exciting adventure.   Additional books discussed in this episode:           Podcast: Download (Duration: 55:07 — 50.5MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

H5F: David McCullough – The Wright Brothers
Exploration , History in Five / October 9, 2015

October 9, 2015 – It’s History in Five Friday, presented by Simon & Schuster — kicking off your modern weekend, with people from the past.  Today, we offer up legendary history author David McCullough on his latest #1 New York Times best-seller: The Wright Brothers. It’s a tale that Mr. McCullough calls quintessentially American in its power to inspire, and to set an example for us in 2015. Orville and Wilbur Wright — along with their impressive sister Katharine — showed the world that man could fly, changing that world forever. And they did it all for just a thousand bucks.   Additional books discussed in this episode:           Podcast: Download (Duration: 8:01 — 7.3MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Jonathan Sandys – God and Churchill
World Leaders / October 6, 2015

October 6, 2015 – How did Winston Churchill overcome so many personal, financial and professional setbacks to lead the United Kingdom to victory during its darkest hour, when the Empire nation stood alone against Hitler? The answer may surprise you, and that’s the focus of a new book. It’s God & Churchill: How the Great Leader’s Sense of Divine Destiny Changed His Troubled World and Offers Hope for Ours. More than a spiritual biography, God & Churchill recounts a deeply personal quest for Jonathan Sandys, Winston Churchill’s great-grandson. Along with co-author and former White House staffer Wallace Henley, Jonathan discovers how again and again, Churchill turned his eyes up to find strength here on earth. Previous books have ignored the role of faith in the Greatest Briton’s life, or dismissed his invocations on behalf of “Christian civilization” as mere rhetoric. Now, for the first time, God & Churchill debunks that myth and inspires us with a Sir Winston who remains a role model today, as we seek to unite the world in the face of the heirs to Hitler’s nihilistic creed. UPDATE: It’s with a heavy heart I report that Jonathan Sandys — a man I was proud to call friend…

James Shapiro – The Year of Lear
Classics / October 5, 2015

October 5, 2015 – On this episode, we visit the theaters, throne rooms and taverns of London 400 years ago, as seen through the eyes of William Shakespeare. History Author Show correspondent Stephen Bedford met our guide to Jacobian London in the shadow of the immortal bard’s statue in Central Park. He is renowned Shakespeare scholar James Shapiro, professor of English of Columbia University. His book is The Year of Lear: Shakespeare in 1606. That was a particularly chaotic year in England with King James’ ascension and the foiling of the Gunpowder Plot. But this atmosphere of crisis inspired Shakespeare, and he went on to produce three of his greatest tragedies that year: King Lear, Macbeth, Antony and Cleopatra. Professor Shapiro is historical adviser at New York City’s Public Theater, Governor of the Folger Shakespeare Library, and frequent BBC commentator. He is also the author of Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare? You can find him at Podcast: Download (Duration: 43:10 — 39.5MB)Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | RSS | More