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This is a podcast about books. Everything you can imagine, about books. Combine this with the human desire to know (Aristotle) the joy found in good conversation (Montaigne) and a wish to share the results, and you have a good idea of why I host and produce The Biblio File.

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Mar 22, 2011

Olivier Barrot has presented the literary program Un livre, Un Jour (A Book a Day) daily on channels France 3 and TV 5 Monde since 1991. In 2009, the year in which he celebrated his 4,000th program, he created Un Livre Toujours (Always a Book), a weekly program devoted to paperback books.

Along with Thierry Taittinger, Olivier is the co-founder of 'Senso'. He has been co-director of the magazine since 2001. He has worked as a journalist for Le Monde, where he has written the “Books” and “Travel” sections since 1986, for the Canal+ TV (“demain” (Tomorrow) then “La grande famille” (The Extended Family) from 1988 to 1992) and for Pariscope, as founder-manager of the Parispoche (Pocket-Paris) supplement.

Gaston Gallimard, the  son of a family of wealthy art collectors, took over the Nouvelle Revue française from his friend André Gide more than 100 years ago, to establish a "publishing counter" and an enduring company which has remained independent and successful ever since.  Most major writers – French and otherwise – have appeared in Gallimard’s impressive catalogs over the past century.  Jacques Rivière, Jean Paulhan, André Malraux, Albert Camus and Philippe Sollers, all worked with Gallimard. The company publishes in all genres – from poems to detective novels – in either its famous white-covered paperbacks or its prestigious Bibliothèque de la Pléiade collection.

I met with Olivier in Ottawa to talk about this Gallimard, and how one might best go about collecting its books.