Guest host Hope Davis presents two stories in which things get out of hand. Rumors and recriminations fly in “Belles Lettres,” by Nafissa Thompson-Spires, as rival mothers defend their daughters’ reputations at a posh school--at any cost. The readers are Eboni Booth, Shalewa Sharpe, and Mary Karr. And we hear Shirley Jackson’s lighter side in “About Two Nice People,” in which neighbors seem to be getting mixed messages from one another. The readers are Lilli Cooper, Ethan Slater, and Julie Halston.
Actor Robin Lord Taylor (You, Gotham) performs a story about a single mom with two unruly sons. And later in the podcast, host Aparna Nancherla talks to Sarah Thyre about how she chose this story for a night at Selected Shorts.
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Guest host Kirsten Vangsness presents two contemporary fables. First, Michael Cunningham reimagines the Hans Christian Andersen class “A Wild Swan,” in a reading by Valorie Curry. Next, an excerpt from George Saunders’ touching and hilarious novella, Fox 8, read by John Cameron Mitchell.
Guest host Jane Curtin presents two stories featuring unconventional families. A young girl is raised by a group of warm-hearted “mamas” in Shay Youngblood’s touching coming-of-age story, “They Tell Me, Now I Know,” read by Viola Davis. In Jai Chakrabarti’s “A Small Sacrifice for An Enormous...