cover image A Voice in the Box: 
My Life in Radio

A Voice in the Box: My Life in Radio

Bob Edwards. Univ. Press of Kentucky, $21.95 (236p) ISBN 978-0-8131-3450-5

After 30 years as an NPR radio host (All Things Considered and Morning Edition) and seven years and counting with two eponymous shows at Sirius XM, Edwards knows how to tell a story. The author of Edward R. Murrow and the Birth of Broadcast Journalism presents his own story, written in his trademark spare style (called “Bobspeak” by NPR colleagues). From toddlerhood in the late 1940s, Edwards dreamed of being on the radio. His family listened to all manner of programs, and their 1939 Zenith radio sits in his living room today. Far less retro is his current employer, Sirius XM Radio: Edwards began hosting there when he was fired by NPR. He details the controversy and media attention generated by NPR’s decision to let him go; in fact, the passages about how he and trusted friends handled the exposure are an excellent lesson in managing a message. On the whole, there is much to learn and enjoy. Edwards shares fascinating details about beginning a career at a tiny station; becoming part of the energetic, excited startup team at NPR; conducting interviews and producing shows; and building a career as a beloved host. He’s forthright about his disappointments, too, including a divorce and the shock of being fired. In this solidly entertaining book, Edwards engages readers with tales from his new radio incarnation. Photos. (Oct.)