NPR Books

'What She Ate' Reveals The Plates And Palates Of 6 Notable Women

NPR Books - August 9, 2017 - 9:49am

Laura Shapiro has likened her method of biographical research to "standing in line at the supermarket and peering into the other carts." Critic Maureen Corrigan says her resulting book is fascinating.

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Raunchy But Sweet, 'Mrs. Fletcher' Is One For The Ages

NPR Books - August 9, 2017 - 6:00am

Tom Perrotta's new novel about a divorced mom and her college-aged son addresses some serious issues with dark humor. The result is uncompromisingly obscene, but still somehow good-natured.

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In 'Emma Reyes,' Life Through A Child's Clear Eyes

NPR Books - August 9, 2017 - 3:00am

As an adult, the Colombian painter Emma Reyes lived in Paris and befriended Frida Kahlo. But in a series of autobiographical letters, she describes a childhood of grinding misery and poverty.

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How The 'Battling' Kellogg Brothers Revolutionized American Breakfast

NPR Books - August 8, 2017 - 12:25pm

A century ago, two brothers took the world by storm with their mass-produced boxed cereal. Medical historian Howard Markel chronicles the contentious relationship between the creators of Corn Flakes.

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Jeff Flake Has Taken On Trump And The GOP, But Will It Matter?

NPR Books - August 8, 2017 - 8:09am

The GOP has "given in to the politics of anger—the belief that riling up the base can make up for failed attempts to broaden the electorate," the senator says. "These are the spasms of a dying party."

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New Biography Of Lincoln's Secretary Of War Reveals A Resilient Man, Haunted By Grief

NPR Books - August 8, 2017 - 2:00am

NPR's Ron Elving reviews a massive new tome on the life of Edwin Stanton, certainly one of the most contentious and controversial figures in Abraham Lincoln's cabinet of rivals.

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David Rodigan's Life In Reggae: Defined By Fanatical Love, Not Race... Right?

NPR Books - August 8, 2017 - 1:00am

David Rodigan has spent his entire life exulting in and exalting reggae. In his autobiography, published earlier this year, the soundman stays away from a topic that would seem utterly central.

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Can Buddhist Practices Help Us Overcome The Biological Pull Of Dissatisfaction?

NPR Books - August 7, 2017 - 9:49am

Science journalist and author Robert Wright says that Buddhist enlightenment might help counteract our natural tendency towards unhappiness. His new book is Why Buddhism is True.

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'Policing Ferguson, Policing America': The Unrest Over The Death Of Michael Brown

NPR Books - August 6, 2017 - 2:10pm

Former Ferguson police chief Thomas Jackson discusses his new book: "Policing Ferguson, Policing America: What Really Happened And What The Country Can Learn From It."

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A Podcast Reopens Old Wounds In 'Are You Sleeping'

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

Kathleen Barber's debut novel is an on-trend mashup of murder, social media and Serial-style true-crime podcasting, but though well paced, it suffers from thin characters and a lack of context.

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Upcoming On-Screen Book Adaptations

NPR Books - August 6, 2017 - 3:51am

After the success of shows like The Handmaid's Tale, more and more books are leaping from page to small screen.

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'Happiness' Explores The Complex Push And Pull Of Human Relationships

NPR Books - August 6, 2017 - 3:00am

Heather Harpham's memoir centers on her baby daughter's struggle with a dangerous illness — but broadens out to include her family and her own fraught relationship with the baby's reluctant father.

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'Ants Among Elephants' Examines Family And Caste In India

NPR Books - August 5, 2017 - 2:42pm

"Ants Among Elephants" is the memoir of an Indian woman, born a so-called untouchable, who is a New York City subway conductor. NPR's Stacey Vanek Smith speaks with author Sujatha Gidla.

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The Stories All Start The Same Way In 'The First Line'

NPR Books - August 5, 2017 - 4:11am

NPR's Scott Simon talks with David LaBounty, co-founder of the literary quarterly The First Line. LaBounty gives readers the first line of a short story, and they continue from there.

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Take A Pilgrimage To America's Sport Sanctuaries In 'The Arena'

NPR Books - August 5, 2017 - 4:11am

Rafi Kohan traveled all over the country to research stadiums for his new book. He learned the secrets of ground crews and ticket scalpers and explored the economics of tax-funded stadiums.

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'New People' Author Danzy Senna Loves The Troublesome Characters

NPR Books - August 5, 2017 - 4:11am

Author Danzy Senna's new novel follows a young, interracial couple — Khalil and Maria — whose seemingly charmed life falls apart after Maria becomes infatuated with a mysterious poet.

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'After On' Sees The End Of The World In A Dating App

NPR Books - August 5, 2017 - 3:00am

Silicon valley entrepreneur and novelist Rob Reid takes on artificial intelligence — and how it might end the world — in his weird, funny new techno-philosophical thriller After On.

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'Solid State': Jonathan Coulton's Sci-Fi Concept Album Becomes A Graphic Novel

NPR Books - August 3, 2017 - 6:00am

Coulton recruited writer Matt Fraction and artist Albert Monteys to tell a time-fractured tale of corporate greed and internet trolls.

(Image credit: Image Comics)

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Our Critic Doesn't Entirely <3 'The Emoji Code'

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

Vyvyan Evans' new book about the rise of emojis casts the little icons as part of human language's long-running struggle to evolve — but too often it reads like a textbook, didactic and dry.

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Book Editor Judith Jones Dies At 93

NPR Books - August 3, 2017 - 1:05am

Judith Jones is responsible for The Diary of Anne Frank being published in the U.S. Her persuasive skills also got Mastering the Art of French Cooking, co-authored by Julia Child, published.

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