PA Books is a weekly program on PCN that features an hour-long conversation with authors of newly published books on topics unique to Pennsylvania. After 20 years on the air, the program continues to produce an extensive video collection of interviews with the experts on Pennsylvania's history and culture. PA Books has preserved key moments for Pennsylvania by focusing on significant events like the Battles of Gettysburg and the Industrial Revolution, examining the lives of Pennsylvania's most famous citizens like W.C. Fields and Andrew Mellon, and hosting notable guests like Pulitzer Prize-Winner Joseph Ellis and former Phillies' greats Bill White and Tug McGraw. Back when it premiered on PCN in 1996, PA Books was only available on PCN on cable. With the recent addition of the subscription service, PCN Select, viewers can stream new and on demand episodes of PA Books at any time.

On March 11, 2018, PCN televised episode number 800 of PA Books. For program number 800, the guest was Chester County’s Walt Koken, a master of the fiddle and banjo, playing “Old Time Music”, traditional music handed down through generations of mountain folks in West Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania. The music was brought to America by Scots-Irish immigrants who carried the tunes with them as they headed west from Philadelphia, through Pennsylvania, and into the Blue Ridge Mountains. “The wonderful thing about Old Time Music,” says PA Books host Brian Lockman, “Is that it has a devoted audience who appreciate something out of the mainstream. Kind of like PCN viewers.”

To celebrate the contribution to preserving Pennsylvania’s history and culture by PA Books, the 18 favorites, including the 800th episode, will be available free of charge streaming on the PCN Select app or at the bottom of this page until the end of March. The 18 FREE PA Books interviews were selected to tell the story of the state through a wide range of topics and guests. Read more about PCN celebrating 800 episodes of PA Books at the link below or by clicking here.





Upcoming Episodes:

“Trumpet Call To Victory,” Sunday at 7 pm - Trumpet Call to Victory tells the story of a small parochial high school located in the Pennsylvania coalfields that reached the summit of basketball glory in the late 1960s. Glorious victories and heartbreaking defeats are chronicled on Saint Gabriel’s path to capturing multiple state championships. Unsung heroes and scholastic superstars take center stage during what, […]
“The Senate Will Come To Order!” March 25 at 7 pm - Sen. Robert C. Jubelirer was first elected to the Pennsylvania Senate in 1974. Watergate was a deep wound on voter psyche, and Jubelirer was the lone Republican freshman Senator elected. Until his loss in a primary election in 2006, Jubelirer would serve skillfully and energetically, making a political career out of his willingness to fight […]
“Smoketown: The Untold Story of the Other Great Black Renaissance,” April 1 at 7 pm - The other great Renaissance of black culture, influence, and glamour burst forth joyfully in what may seem an unlikely place—Pittsburgh, PA—from the 1920s through the 1950s. Today black Pittsburgh is known as the setting for August Wilson’s famed plays about noble but doomed working-class strivers. But this community once had an impact on American history […]



Recent Episodes:

“Fire on the Mountain” - Walt Koken, the founding member of the Highwoods Stringband, reminisces about traveling and playing old time music in the 1960’s and 1970’s, and the people he met while barnstorming, before and during his days in the band. Description courtesy of Mudthumper Music. PA Books airs Sunday nights at 7 pm. Click here to enjoy more […]



Celebrate the PA Books 800th episode milestone with PCN!

Watch our 18 favorites on demand for free below and streaming on the PCN Select app until the end of March.

To see why these 18 interviews made the list, read our press release here.

PA Books – 18 Favorites

Africans in New Sweden
Andrew Wyeth: In Retrospect
As American as Shoofly Pie
Buchanan Dying
The Confederate Approach on Harrisburg
Fire on the Mountain: An American Odyssey
General Ike
Marley and Me
Martin Guitar Masterpieces
Mistaken Identity
Mob Files
Pennsylvania Scrapple
I Walked With Giants