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There are few things more enjoyable than encountering someone who is both passionate about something and able to talk about it in an intelligent and interesting way. If their topic can be expressed through a story, even better. If the story gives us insight into ourselves, our heritage, our culture, or teaches us something interesting about those of another, it’s one of the best things of all.

History Author Show, a podcast available through iHeart Radio, brings together every essential element. In each episode host Dean Karayanis chats for about an hour with an author whose latest book is drawn from the pages of history—sometimes a piece of historical fiction, more often a new biography or nonfiction work; many returning authors have dabbled in all three.

No matter how they frame their stories, Karayanis’s guests, who have devoted many hours to their subjects, are consistently enthusiastic in sharing all that they’ve learned. And the host is just as delighted to learn about the authors themselves, why they chose their topic, the detective work required in their research, and even how the cover art came to be designed. 

With the entirety of human and world history available, the episodes never lack for variety. Nazi racecar drivers vs. an American heiress-funded Jewish driver? Check. Slandered baseball legend? Check. Lizzie Borden, Winston Churchill, the building of Grant’s Tomb? Check, check, and check. The possibilities are endless. Those just discovering the show will find over 300 episodes in the archive, so there’s plenty to explore.

The most dangerous part of listening to the History Author Show is what it can do to a bookworm’s book budget. Everything sounds so good and so interesting, it can be difficult to resist searching out the books themselves to learn more than can be covered in a short podcast interview. And then the next problem is finding enough time to read or listen to them, with the next episode (and literary temptation) arriving every other week.

Whether history repeats itself or simply rhymes is a point of contention among philosophers and scholars. As Christians, we know that our most important history was “written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4). Whatever the case, those who dig into the past are rewarded. (iHeart Radio)

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