Let's Talk: How to Have Better Conversations

Nihal Arthanayake


March 2023




About the book:

Let's Talk: How to Have Better Conversations

by Nihal Arthanayake

Sign up to Rebel Book Club to read with us.

Club events for 'Let's Talk' will be held on Monday 27th March and Tuesday 28th March - more info here.

Publisher: Orion Publishing Co

Where do you start a conversation with people who have tried to kill your family?
How can a hostage negotiator teach us to get someone on side in less than a minute?
Can a Muslim woman who sat down with neo-Nazis teach us to be better listeners?

Conversations are broken. And while effective dialogue is supposed to lead to greater fulfilment in our personal and professional lives, all the scientific evidence points towards us sharing fewer interactions than previous generations. From ever decreasing face-to-face meetings to echo chambers online, we no longer have the necessary tools to talk to each other.

Nihal Arthanayake is bucking this trend. As the world becomes increasingly more fractured, he has built a platform of 1.2 million listeners a week on BBC Radio 5 Live who regard him as one of the best people of his generation at having public conversations. Guests from the world's biggest stars to leaders of inner-city gangs have lauded his seemingly innate ability to stimulate positive discussions without the need for confrontation. Now he wants to understand how he developed his skills, what it exactly means to have a 'great conversation' and, most importantly, how he can teach us to have better interactions in our everyday lives.

Let's Talk blends Nihal's experiences as an acclaimed interviewer with expert and celebrity opinion on the secrets and psychology behind successful communication. From tracing the evolution of dialogue to discovering what lights up in the brain when we're enjoying a good discussion, Nihal speaks to the experts - from the board room to the criminal courts - to find why good conversation has eroded over time and how we can fix it.

Part how-to and part manifesto, Let's Talk is Nihal's accessible, anecdotal and invigorating toolkit to having better conversations with anyone, any time.

"A brilliant book on the art of conversation. It is entirely from the heart, an impassioned plea for more meaningful conversation amid this era of online squabbling and all too easy animosity. This isn't some half-hearted celeb effort . . . a very impassioned defence of conversation as an art and one of the things that can save and retain our humanity in a world of GIFs and emojis and fifteen second digital dopamine hits. Nihal writes as well as he chats and this book is great."
- Matt Haig, bestselling author of Reasons to Stay Alive
"Nihal is nothing less than the most intelligent interviewer in British broadcasting, so I had high expectations for his book on conversations, and it doesn't disappoint. It's clever, original, surprising and reading it made me appreciate why he is so good at what he does - he actually listens to the people he consults. A compulsory book for these divided times."
- Sathnam Sanghera, bestselling author of Empireland

"An intriguing exploration of the importance of a proper chinwag by one of our most brilliant broadcasters"
- Sara Cox, bestselling author of Till the Cows Come Home

About Nihal Arthanayake

Award-winning broadcaster, journalist and DJ

Nihal Arthanayake is an acclaimed broadcaster and TV presenter. He currently presents a daily daytime show on BBC 5 Live, and his unique interviewing style was recently recognised at the BBC Radio and Music Awards where he won Interview of the Year.

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