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What's Travel Writer Paul Theroux Reading?


And in the interest of expanding our own reading horizons, we've been asking friends of the show - authors, musicians, really anyone near the microphone - what they're reading this summer. Author Paul Theroux is probably best known for his travel writing, and we recently spoke to him about his latest novel, "The Lower River," which is set in Malawi. Theroux is deeply immersed in books about Africa - both writing and reading them - but when he digs into the stack by his bedside, he's really looking forward to delving into a new book about the founder of the Mormon Church.

PAUL THEROUX: I'm very interested in Mormonism. I'm a person without much religion, but there's a book by Fawn Brodie called "No Man Knows My History." It's the life of Joseph Smith, and it's really one of the best biographies I've ever read; of a guy born in Vermont, grew up in upstate New York and starts a religion. And there's a new book. And it's called "Rough Stone Rolling." And when I finished my book about Africa, all these books about Angola and Botswana and Namibia, I'm going to read this new biography of Joseph Smith.


GREENE: Again, that is author Paul Theroux. He's talking about the book "Rough Stone Rolling" by Richard Lyman Bushman. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.