Nile Rodgers

Great works of fiction to pass the time between legendary recordings.



First with his influential band Chic and then as a producer of hits by artists including Madonna ("Like a Virgin"), Diana Ross ("I'm Coming Out"), and David Bowie ("Let's Dance") , Nile Rodgers has left an indelible mark on music with a rhythm guitar sound that is often imitated and a groove that defies emulation. His new memoir, Le Freak, traces his life story from a sometimes harrowing childhood in Greenwich Village  to the heights of fame. This week, he chooses three fictions with the power to transport and enthrall.


Purchase Le Freak: An Upside Down Story of Family, Disco, and Destiny


Music by Nile Rodgers


Music by Nile Rodgers and Chic



The Count of Monte Cristo

By Alexandre Dumas


"This was the first adult book that I ever read. I was seven years old when I immersed myself in Dumas's complex revenge novel set in 19th century France. It vividly deals with cruelty, kindness, slavery, murder, and redemption. It's done so compellingly I'd bet it's even better today. It's literary fine wine."





By Frank Herbert


"Science fiction, fantasy, and magic perfectly fused. Dune even teaches you a new language. It's the story of a jealous emperor's sinister plot to eradicate a popular duke and his clan by secretly supporting a rival baron in a blood feud. The goal is to gain sole control of the most precious resource in the universe, a powerful spice called melange. This book was integral hippie gear in 1969."



Treasure Island

By Robert Louis Stevenson


"The greatest tale of pirates, mutiny, and buried treasure ever. The characters, settings, and cinematic descriptions, make this the granddaddy of all buccaneer adventures. I'm not just being nostalgic because it's the first book I ever owned. This is the one book I'd want if I were stranded on a deserted island."

April 19: "What you see first, after the starting gun's crack, is a column of bobbing runners, thousands of them, surging downhill..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…

Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Poems That Make Grown Men Cry

And women too.  Luminaries from Colin Firth to Nick Cave and Jonathan Franzen chose the poems that bring them to tears, and the result is a stunning collection of poignant verse from writers like Auden, Whitman, Bishop, Larkin, Neruda and many others.  Warning: choking-up hazard.

The King of Pain

Trapped beneath his entertainment system, reality TV mastermind Rick Salter reflects on his life and tries to piece together the events of the previous evening. Seth Kaufman’s romp is an outrageous meditation on pain and entertainment in a deranged world in which the two are often interchangeable.

The Good Inn

Frank Black, frontman for the Pixies, has written a transgressive historical fiction with shades of Thomas Pynchon (focused as it is on the history of explosives and cinematic pornography), all set in a hallucinatory Edwardian Europe.