NPR Books

In 'Good Booty,' Our Hot And Heavy Love Affair With Pop Music

NPR Books - August 17, 2017 - 3:00am

Sex is such an inextricable part of pop music, it's easy to overlook, but NPR Music critic Ann Powers rectifies that in her new book, a portrait of America's obsession with sex as it manifests in pop.

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3 Romances For Your August Escape

NPR Books - August 16, 2017 - 9:00am

The lazy days of August call for getaway reading, so we've got three romances that'll take you from old China to the small-town South, featuring couples who learn love is closer than they think.

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Quoting Mandela, Obama's Tweet After Charlottesville Is The Most-Liked Ever

NPR Books - August 16, 2017 - 7:16am

"No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion," the former president tweeted. He was quoting Nelson Mandela, and it struck a chord for many.

(Image credit: Pete Souza/The White House)

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An Oddball Family That Can't Connect In 'How To Behave In A Crowd'

NPR Books - August 16, 2017 - 3:00am

Camille Bordas keeps things light in her smart, charming new novel, but there are serious underpinnings to this story about the youngest member of a family of quirky, emotionally closed overachievers.

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'The Once And Future Liberal' Looks At Shortfalls Of American Liberalism

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 12:29pm

NPR's Robert Siegel talks to Mark Lilla, author of the book, The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics, which looks at the failure of American liberalism over the past two generations.

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Novelist Max Brooks On Doomsday, Dyslexia And Growing Up With Hollywood Parents

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 10:29am

Brooks' stable childhood with parents Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft stands in contrast to the wild stories he tells in novels like World War Z and Minecraft: The Island.

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Good Booty

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 7:18am

What rhymes with tutti frutti?

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'Home Fire' Puts A Topical Spin On Ancient Greek Tragedy

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 6:00am

Kamila Shamsie's new book — beautifully written and paced — updates the ancient story of Antigone to tell an explosive story of two families tangled together by love, grief and religious radicalism.

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'Hail To The Chin': B-List Actor Bruce Campbell Returns With A Memoir Of Middle Age

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 3:00am

Campbell's second collection of rants and ruminations is just as enjoyably smarmy as his first, though the actor's ruthlessly sardonic outlook has mellowed.

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Be More Than A Bookstore: A Brick-And-Mortar Shop's Key To Success

NPR Books - August 15, 2017 - 12:53am

Barnes & Noble is experimenting with food, Amazon is replicating its online business and an indie shop aims to be part of the community. Ultimately, they all want to sell more books.

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Poet Imagines Life Inside A 1910 Institution That Eugenics Built

NPR Books - August 14, 2017 - 11:25am

Molly McCully Brown, who has cerebral palsy, says that if she'd been born in a different era, she might have been sent to the "Virginia State Colony," an early landmark of the U.S. eugenics movement.

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In Children's Storybooks, Realism Has Advantages

NPR Books - August 14, 2017 - 7:47am

Young children have an easier time exporting what they learn from a fictional storybook to the real world when the storybook is realistic, says psychologist Tania Lombrozo.

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'Ghost Of The Innocent Man' Chronicles Justice Too Long Delayed

NPR Books - August 13, 2017 - 3:00am

Benjamin Rachlin's crisply-written new book tells the story of Willie Grimes, who spent 24 years in prison for a crime he didn't commit — and the tortuous legal struggle that eventually freed him.

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YA Books Are Targeted In Intense Social Media Callouts, Rosenfield Says

NPR Books - August 12, 2017 - 3:55am

A young adult novel is fiercely criticized on Twitter and accused of being racist by those who haven't read it. NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Kat Rosenfield, who covered the story for Vulture.

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'The Bettencourt Affair': Extravagant Friendship Or Cruel Swindle?

NPR Books - August 12, 2017 - 3:44am

Cosmetics heiress Liliane Bettencourt lavished money and gifts on her friend, photographer François-Marie Banier. Then, her daughter sparked a decade of scandal by accusing Banier of abusing her.

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L'Oreal's Dark Roots Are On Display In 'The Bettencourt Affair'

NPR Books - August 12, 2017 - 3:00am

A former Paris bureau chief for Time, Tom Sancton is the perfect chronicler of l'affaire Bettencourt — the juicy swirl of scandal, bribery and dark doings that fascinated France for a decade.

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Pop Culture Happy Hour: Recommending The Best Of Stephen King

NPR Books - August 11, 2017 - 2:00am

We didn't like the new Dark Tower movie, so we opted instead to discuss King's vast and rewarding career. And, as always, What's Making Us Happy this week.

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1A Movie Club Sees "Detroit"

NPR Books - August 10, 2017 - 7:18am

How many stars do you give this historical drama?

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Catch A Philosophical Wave In 'Surfing With Sartre'

NPR Books - August 10, 2017 - 3:00am

Philosophy professor and avid surfer Aaron James brings his two passions together in his new book, drawing connections between the surfer's state of mind and age-old philosophical conundrums.

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A Physician Explores 'A Better Path' To The End Of Life

NPR Books - August 9, 2017 - 10:15am

Dr. Jessica Nutik Zitter, author of Extreme Measures, discusses the ethics of using medical assistance to hasten death. Zitter is the subject of the Netflix documentary Extremis.

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