The Mr B's Podcast

We invite you to turn your laptop/tablet/phone on, plug in your earphones, and spend half an hour in the company of books and the Mr B’s Team. Mr B's Emporium of Reading Delights is an independent bookshop in Bath, named one of the top ten independent bookshops in the world by the Guardian in 2015.
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Welcome to the Mr B's Podcast: the audio-home of Mr B's Emporium of Reading Delights in Bath. Read more about our different episodes, and the bookshop where they are all made here

Jul 17, 2017

The novel Dodgers was one of our favourite novels of 2016, a surprising and elegantly-tuned coming of age story disguised as a crime novel. Jess talks to its author Bill Beverly about the road trip at the centre of the story, and we recommend other superb reads which will take you off the beaten track, and unto the unending road.

Hosted by Jessica Johannesson

Music: 'Star of the River' by The Bookshop Band


Books mentioned in this episode:


Dodgers by Bill Beverly

Jesus’ Son by Denis Johnson

Native Son by Richard Wright

Home by Toni Morrison

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

The Lost Continent by Bill Bryson

Almost Heaven by Martin Fletcher

Blue Highways by William Least Heat-Moon

Butterflies in November by Audur Ava Olafsdottir

How's the Pain? by Pascal Garnier

The Shiralee by D’Arcy Niland

Jun 16, 2017

Some of us love being introduced to a plethora of characters in our fiction reads, whereas some can't think of anything better than being swept up by a single voice, and one experience of the world. We talk to Cynan Jones, whose novel Cove follows the joys and sorrows of one desolate man in a kayak, and recommend other favourite tales of isolation and loneliness.

Hosted by Jessica Johannesson

Music by The Bookshop Band


Books mentioned in this episode:

Cove by Cynan Jones

The Dig by Cynan Jones

I am Legend by Richard Matheson

A Line Made by Walking by Sara Baume

Hummingbird by Tristan Hughes

Fire Season by Philip Connors

The Lonely City by Olivia Laing


Other Tales of Isolation recommended by the Mr B's team:


A General Theory of Oblivion by José Eduardo Agualusa

Spill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume

Hansen’s Children by Ognjen Spahic

Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller

Caribou Island by David Vann

Deep Country by Neil Ansell



Nov 10, 2016

Christmas time is approaching and so is the Mr B’s Christmas catalogue. Tom’s favourite book of the year, featured in the catalogue, is a novel set in Spain, written in Swedish and translated into English. Breat Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs is an inventive, edgy and darkly humorous tale in which the protagonist doesn’t get a voice of her own, and in which everyone is always telling a story about someone else. Lina Wolff, its author, came to the shop earlier in the year and sat down to chat to Jess about brilliant girls in literature, Spanish gossip, and why there are no Swedish characters in her novel.

Books mentioned in this episode:

Bret Easton Ellis and the Other Dogs by Lina Wolff

Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

Nightwood by Djuna Barnes

The Saga of Gösta Berling by Selma Lagerlöf

Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes

Music by The Bookshop Band

Sep 26, 2016

Novelist Yann Martel, author of the Booker prize-winning  Life of Pi, joins us for a conversation about books, reading and the endless scope of art in making sense of the world. His latest novel The High Mountains of Portugal  is out in paperback this month -  a gorgeous story about loss, and the sometimes eccentric ways in which we deal with it. We also finds out about a very peculiar guerrilla book group, conducted once upon a time by Yann himself…

Books mentioned in this episode:

The High Mountains of Portugal by Yann Martel

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

The old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

The Iliad by Homer, Transl. Stephen Mitchell

The Metamorphosis, In the Penal Colony,  and Other Stories by Franz Kafka


Music by The Bookshop Band

Jul 28, 2016

The weekend after the Brexit vote we decided to create a podcast celebrating European fiction. We felt that the best way to move forward in uncertain times, was to embrace the cross-cultural creativity which underpins so much of the writing we love and champion in the shop. We also asked our listeners to contribute with their own favourite reading memories. We hope you're inspired to read the whole list. Spot the background seagulls!

Books mentioned in this episode:

All the Names by Jose Saramago, Transl. by Margaret Jull Costa

The Burnt-out Town of Miracles by Roy Jacobsen, Transl. by Don Bartlett

The Howling Miller by Aarto Paasilinna, Transl. by Will Hobson

Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada, Transl. Michael Hoffman

Thinner than a Hair by Adnam Mahmutovic

Her Father’s Daughter by Marie Sizun, Transl. by Adriana Hunter

Arab Jazz by Karim Miské, Transl. by Sam Gordon

Beware of Pity by Stefan Zweig, Transl. by Anthea Bell


Read about more of the extended Mr B family’s favourite European reads here.


Jun 14, 2016

We’ve been hosting a series of events under the theme of Revivals and Retellings. Here, Danielle, Kate and Jessica chat about some of the books that have grabbed their attention recently. As usual in our 'At Home' episodes, you can also expect a few palate-teasing tasters from the books themselves.

Books discussed in this episode:

Reader, I Married Him Ed. by Tracy Chevalier

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie

Rasputin and Other Ironies by Teffi

The Book of Memory by Petina Gappah

Lunatics, Lover and Poets: Twelve Stories after Cervantes and Shakespeare, Ed. by Margarita Valencia and Daniel Hahn

May 5, 2016

Welcome to an interview in true Mr B's style! Back in February we had the pleasure of hosting the inspirational power-house that is Caitlin Moran, to celebrate the publication of her book Moranifesto. Caitlin kindly agreed to answer some of the questions we ask our Reading Year customers. Which was the last book she read that left her breathless? What is her favourite thing to do on a Sunday and, by the way, what on earth is wrong with the birds in London?

Books mentioned in this episode:

Moranifesto by Caitlin Moran
A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing by Eimear McBride
The American Girl by Monika Fagerholm
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
What Katy did at school by Sarah Coolidge
The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage by Sydney Padua
A London Year: 365 Days of City Life in Diaries, Journals and Letters, Ed. by Travis Elborough, Nick Rennison
Birthday Letters by Ted Huges

Music provided by The Bookshop Band