Canadian celeb 'Strombo' runs Apple's new book club | Cult of Mac

Canadian celeb ‘Strombo’ runs Apple’s new book club


First up on the reading list is Neal Stephenson's Termination Shock.
First up on the reading list is Neal Stephenson's Termination Shock.
Photo: Apple Books

In the tradition of media personalities helming book clubs — Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon — Apple Books welcomes a new book club with a new host. The Canadian is not exactly a household name in the U.S., but he has a track record with Apple. It’s Apple Music Hits live radio host George “Strombo” Stroumboulopoulos, who said in a tweet on Tuesday he’s going literary.

The new club is called Strombo’s Lit. Bookworms in the U.S., U.K., Canada and Australia can check it out now on the Apple Books app.

Strombo’s Lit on Apple Books app

You might expect a book club to have a curation team behind it, but in this case Strombo will handle the curation himself, apparently. He first hooked up with Apple in 2020 as an Apple Music Hits live radio host. His music show, Strombo, introduces listeners to various artists.

On Tuesday, he announced the launch of Strombo’s Lit on his show and Twitter. He said in an interview that the idea for the book club came because he wanted to talk with friends about his favorite books during pandemic lockdowns.

Not his first foray into books

If you’re wondering if a music host is a fit for books, don’t worry. For more than a decade, Strombo interviewed up to five authors a week for a Canadian talk show. Those authors included heavy hitters like Cornel West, Maya Angelou and Gore Vidal.

Strombo’s new book club won’t carry a consistent theme. “I get as much out of Bruce Lee and Howard Zinn as I get out of Stephen King and Eldridge Cleaver and Kathy Acker,” the new host said of his wide-ranging literary interests.

“If we want a better culture, we’ve got to understand each other a little bit better,” he went on to say on the Apple Books app’s Strombo’s Lit page. “One of the ways we can do that is by reading each other’s stories.”

The club’s first book up for discussion will be Neal Stephenson’s Termination Shock.

Apple noted that the new book club won’t replace the curated lists already available in the Books app. Rather, Strombo’s Lit will help readers find new book titles “via Strombo’s own personal selections.”

That would seem to suggest that more new clubs let by other personalities and celebrities could be coming to Apple Books.