Liana Finck Reimagines the Story of Genesis

Liana Finck Reimagines the Story of Genesis

By The New York Times

The Book Review

Saturday, 23 April

The cartoonist Liana Finck’s new book, “Let There Be Light,” recasts the story of Genesis with a female God who is a neurotic artist.

“At the very beginning of this book, she’s existing in a void and she just decides to make something,” Finck says. “And it’s all fun and games until she starts to feel some self-doubt and realizes that she hasn’t done well enough. She’s really kind of a self-portrait of me at that point. She’s well-intentioned, she’s happy and she’s very hard on herself.”

Jonathan Van Ness of “Queer Eye” fame visits the podcast to discuss his new book, “Love That Story.” He talks to Lauren Christensen, an editor at the Book Review.

“As a queer person, we are told very early on what spaces you are able to thrive in. Beauty is often one of those spaces. There are just a lot of spaces that you can be directed to. And I love hairdressing and I love beauty and I love what I get to do on ‘Queer Eye,’” Van Ness says. “So I am eternally grateful to that. But also, I think that queer people who are feminine and who are flamboyant — as I’ve been called my entire life — are not also allowed to be information gatherers, are also not allowed to be seen as credible.” He continues: “Obviously I didn’t go to journalism school. I didn’t graduate college. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t learn and share my experiences with others.”

Also on this week’s episode, Joumana Khatib and Dave Kim talk about what they’ve been reading. John Williams is the host.

Here are the books discussed in this week’s “What We’re Reading”:

“In the Country of Others” by Leïla Slimani

“Phenotypes” by Paulo Scott

“Tamarisk Row” by Gerald Murnane

We would love to hear your thoughts about this episode, and about the Book Review’s podcast in general. You can send them to books@nytimes.com.

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