Radio Wolinsky

Robert Olen Butler, “Perfume River,” 2016

Robert Olen Butler, author of the novel “Perfume River,” in conversation with Richard Wolinsky, recorded in the KPFA studios, October 25, 2016.

Robert Olen Butler is the author of several novels and short story collections. His collection,  “A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain” won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for fiction. The author of sixteen novels and six collections of short stories, his best-known works focus on the legacy of Vietnam, either looking at the war itself or on its aftermath in Vietnam and in America. “Perfume River” tells the story of a Vietnam vet, struggling with his entry to old age, and with his older parents, one of whom has his own secrets from World War II, and with his brother, who ran to Canada rather than be conscripted. Robert Olen Butler also writes a series of thrillers set during World War I featuring reporter Christopher Marlowe Cobb,

This interview with Robert Olen Butler was originally posted on January 26th 2017. Two novels have come out since this interview. Paris in the Dark, a Christopher Marlowe Cobb thriller in September 2018 and Late City, published in September 2021. Photos: Kelly Butler/Grove Atlantic.

Robert Olen Butler website