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'Empire Falls' Author Richard Russo

Empire Falls, for which Richard Russo won a Pulitzer Prize, has been made into an HBO miniseries. Russo has written five novels in all, including Mohawk, The Risk Pool, andNobody's Fool.

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Combine an intelligent interviewer with a roster of guests that, according to the Chicago Tribune, would be prized by any talk-show host, and you're bound to get an interesting conversation. Fresh Air interviews, though, are in a category by themselves, distinguished by the unique approach of host and executive producer Terry Gross. "A remarkable blend of empathy and warmth, genuine curiosity and sharp intelligence," says the San Francisco Chronicle.