Arts/Life

New In Paperback
5:03 am
Wed September 5, 2012

New In Paperback Sept. 3-9

Originally published on Thu September 6, 2012 8:44 am

Fiction and nonfiction releases from Jeffrey Eugenides, Sebastian Barry, Jodi Kantor, David Margolick and Simon Garfield.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Kitchen Window
12:23 am
Wed September 5, 2012

No-Bake Desserts? No Sweat

Dave Scantland for NPR

Originally published on Wed September 5, 2012 5:26 am

I was once known among my friends as the queen of desserts. OK, maybe that's an exaggeration, but I was at least the bringer of desserts. My circle of friends hosted frequent dinner parties, but my tiny apartment made entertaining any more than a couple of guests impossible. To make up for that, I always offered to bring a contribution. While I preferred appetizers, the day came when a friend asked for a dessert. With some trepidation, I complied. I have no idea what that first dessert was, but it was a hit. My fate was sealed.

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Author Interviews
2:31 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

An Individualist Approach To The Hebrew Bible

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 2:35 pm

Hebrew scripture is a "message in a bottle," says Yoram Hazony, and in The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture, he tries to decipher that message. Hazony's new book makes the case for a different reading of the ancient texts — and argues that the Hebrew Bible is a work of philosophy in narrative form.

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Movie Reviews
12:32 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

Chilling Future Awaits 'Girl Model' Recruits

Nadya Vall, a 13-year-old Russian girl who is sent off to Tokyo to become a model, is hoping to satisfy her parents' desire to afford a larger home.
First Run Features

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 2:38 pm

In Girl Model, an alarming documentary about the trafficking of Russian child models to the Japanese fashion market, a garrulous modeling agent explains his philosophy: To expiate his own past bad behavior, he says with papal solemnity, he approaches model recruitment as a religious calling, not to mention a fatherly responsibility to do right by the girls, give them a better life than they have now and protect them from harm.

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Author Interviews
12:15 pm
Tue September 4, 2012

Mickey Edwards On Democracy's 'Cancer'

Mickey Edwards served as a Republican congressman for Oklahoma's 5th Congressional District from 1977 to 1993.
Gia Regan Yale University Press

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 12:48 pm

In his 16 years in Congress, Republican Mickey Edwards came to a strong conclusion: Political parties are the "cancer at the heart of our democracy," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross.

In his new book, The Parties Versus the People, the former Republican congressman from Oklahoma details how party leaders have too much control over who runs for office, what bills make it to the floor and how lawmakers vote.

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Author Interviews
11:48 am
Tue September 4, 2012

Conservation Biologist Explains Why 'Feathers' Matter

Thor Hanson's own cast of Archaeopteryx lithographica presents what he calls the "ancient wing written in stone."
Thor Hanson Basic Books

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 12:11 pm

It was the absence of feathers that got conservation biologist Thor Hanson thinking about the significance of them. Hanson was in Kenya studying the feeding habits of vultures, and he noticed the advantages that vultures had relative to other birds because of their bare, featherless heads.

"Having lost their feathers allows [vultures] to remain much cleaner and more free from bacteria and parasites and disease," Hanson tells Fresh Air contributor Dave Davies.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Tue September 4, 2012

'Wilderness Of Error' Indicts U.S. Justice System

Army doctor Jeffrey McDonald, shown here in a 1995 photo, was convicted of murdering his pregnant wife and two daughters in the 1970s. He maintains that they were killed by a band of hippies.
Shane Young AP

On Feb. 17, 1970, physician Jeffrey MacDonald called the police to his Fort Bragg, N.C., home. He told the responding officers that he had been assaulted by a group of "hippie" intruders, who had also bludgeoned and stabbed his wife and two young daughters — ages 2 and 5 — to death. MacDonald suffered a concussion and collapsed lung but survived.

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Author Interviews
1:20 am
Tue September 4, 2012

'Children Succeed' With Character, Not Test Scores

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 10:38 am

A child's success can't be measured in IQ scores, standardized tests or vocabulary quizzes, says author Paul Tough. Success, he argues, is about how young people build character. Tough explores this idea in his new book, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity and the Hidden Power of Character.

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The Two-Way
4:52 pm
Mon September 3, 2012

'Green Mile' Actor Michael Clarke Duncan Dies At 54

Michael Clarke Duncan, seen here in 2010, has died at age 54 in a Los Angeles hospital. The actor appeared in more than 70 films, including blockbusters such as Armageddon and Kung Fu Panda.
Angela Weiss Getty Images for AFI

Originally published on Tue September 4, 2012 9:48 am

Actor Michael Clarke Duncan has died at age 54, according to his fiancee, the Rev. Omarosa Manigault. Known for his huge size and deep, resonant voice, Duncan received an Oscar nomination for his performance in The Green Mile, the 1999 prison film in which he starred alongside Tom Hanks.

Duncan's death was announced by Manigault, who in July said that she performed CPR on the actor after finding him in a state of cardiac arrest late at night.

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Arts
3:16 pm
Mon September 3, 2012

Paul Novoa

KRWG Music Spotlight 107 with Paul Novoa

Monkey See
2:53 pm
Mon September 3, 2012

Fall Movie Preview: Bob Mondello Looks Ahead

Ben Affleck directed and stars in Argo.
Claire Folger Warner Brothers Pictures

Originally published on Wed February 20, 2013 10:46 am

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PG-13: Risky Reads
5:03 am
Mon September 3, 2012

Embracing, Then Rejecting, A Life Of Melodrama

Tara Altebrando is the author of The Best Night of Your (Pathetic) Life.

The summer before high school, I was dreading the required reading list. I was switching from public school to an all-girls Catholic school. I feared the worst.

Dickens made two appearances. Hemingway, at least one.

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Books News & Features
2:41 am
Mon September 3, 2012

Super Man, Wonder Woman: The New Power Couple

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon September 3, 2012 4:15 am

Dating can be difficult at the best of times, but if you're the Man of Steel it's near impossible — until now. The latest edition of Justice League gives Superman a romantic break by pairing him up with Wonder Woman. According to Justice League writer Geoff Johns, the relationship will definitely cause tension around the office.

Author Interviews
2:52 pm
Sun September 2, 2012

The Writer Who Was The Voice Of A Generation

After struggling with depression for much of his adult life, writer David Foster Wallace committed suicide on Sept. 12, 2008.
Giovanni Giovannetti Effigie

Originally published on Sun September 2, 2012 4:57 pm

When writer David Foster Wallace committed suicide in 2008 at the age of 46, U.S. literature lost one of its most influential living writers.

The definitive account of Wallace's life and what led to his suicide was published in the New Yorker in March of the following year.

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Author Interviews
4:24 am
Sun September 2, 2012

Behind The Lens With Obama's 'First Cameraman'

Before joining candidate Obama's new media team in 2008, Arun Chaudhary worked in film in New York and was on the faculty of NYU's graduate film school.
Susan Walsh AP

Many presidents have had official White House photographers, but Arun Chaudhary claims the honor of being the first official White House videographer. He has written a book about his journey from disheveled film professor to his four years in the almost constant company of the president. First Cameraman is an often funny, generally admiring account of the life and times of candidate Barack Obama — and then President Obama — and the sleepless nights and adventure-filled days of the man trying to record it all.

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Arts & Life
4:24 am
Sun September 2, 2012

Wanted: Sitter For Rural Bookshop. Must Like Cats

Weekend Edition Sunday guest host Linda Wertheimer speaks with Wendy Welch and Jack Beck, owners of Tales of the Lonesome Pine bookstore in Big Stone Gap, Va. They are looking for someone to watch their shop while embarking on a two-month book tour. Wendy has written a memoir about owning a brick and mortar bookshop in a small, rural community.

Sunday Puzzle
4:24 am
Sun September 2, 2012

An 'Amusing' Set Of 19th Century Riddles

NPR Graphic

Originally published on Sun September 2, 2012 8:01 am

On-air challenge: Answer riddles from The Amusing Puzzle Book, published circa the 1840s:

  • I know a word of letters three, add two, and fewer there will be.
  • Without a bridle or a saddle, across a thing I ride astraddle. And those I ride, by help of me, though almost blind, are made to see.
  • What is that which has been tomorrow and will be yesterday?
  • Clothed in yellow, red and green, I prate before the king and queen. Of neither house nor land possessed, by lords and ladies, I'm caressed.
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Theater
4:24 am
Sun September 2, 2012

Broadway Spoofers Return To 'Forbidden' Territory

Natalie Charle Ellis, Scott Richard Foster, Jenny Lee Stern and Marcus Stevens are part of Gerard Alessandrini's Forbidden Broadway troupe, which is returning to the stage after a three-year hiatus.
Carol Rosegg Forbidden Broadway

After 27 years of writing wickedly funny lyrics and sketches for Forbidden Broadway, the tiny off-Broadway comedy that satirizes Broadway musicals, Gerard Alessandrini decided to hang things up for a while.

"I just thought, let's see what happens to Broadway in a year or two or three, and then, if we feel it warrants a new edition of Forbidden Broadway, we'll do that," he says. "And that's exactly what happened."

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Movie Interviews
3:04 pm
Sat September 1, 2012

Right-Wing Filmmaker: Obama's An Anti-Colonialist

Movie poster for 2016: Obama's America.
Rocky Mountain Pictures

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 4:37 pm

  • Host Guy Raz Talks To '2016: Obama's America' Filmmaker Dinesh D'Souza

In mid-July, an obscure film called 2016: Obama's America opened in just one theater in Houston. The film proposes that President Obama is weakening the country — deliberately.

Conservative writer Dinesh D'Souza, its co-director and star, traveled to Hawaii, Indonesia and Kenya to test that theory, and this week, his film could be seen at 1,500 theaters across America.

Many critics have blasted the conspiratorial tone of the film, which D'Souza calls a documentary.

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Author Interviews
2:13 pm
Sat September 1, 2012

Following The Footnotes Of The Revolutionary War

In his book, Robert Sullivan considers, among other things, how little Emanuel Leutze's 1851 painting Washington Crossing the Delaware has in common with the actual historic crossing, which took place at night and during a snowstorm.
Metropolitan Museum of Art AP

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 4:37 pm

When we think of the seminal moments in the birth of the United States of America, many people would point to the battles of Lexington, Concord and Bunker Hill. But according to Robert Sullivan, the founding landscape of our nation is not in Massachusetts. It is in and around New York.

In his new book, My American Revolution: Crossing the Delaware and I-78, Sullivan writes that the majority of battles in the Revolutionary War were fought in the middle colonies: New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

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The Two-Way
1:57 pm
Sat September 1, 2012

'Jonathan Livingston Seagull' Author Richard Bach Injured In Plane Crash

A file photo of author Richard Bach, in 1975.
Associated Press

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 2:02 pm

Pilot and author Richard Bach was hurt Friday when the small plane he was flying tangled in power lines as he attempted to land, according to media reports.

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
1:17 pm
Sat September 1, 2012

The Movie Kristen Bell Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Michael Showalter, Christopher Meloni and A.D. Miles star in the 2001 comedy, Wet Hot American Summer.
Amy Rice The Kobal Collection/USA Films

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 4:37 pm

The weekends on All Things Considered series Movies I've Seen A Million Times features filmmakers, actors, writers and directors talking about the movies that they never get tired of watching.

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Theater
4:12 am
Sat September 1, 2012

George Takei Takes Story Of Internment To The Stage

George Takei rehearses a scene from Allegiance, a new musical inspired by Takei's childhood in Japanese-American internment camps during World War II.
Jeffrey Weiser Courtesy of The Old Globe

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 8:18 pm

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Author Interviews
4:12 am
Sat September 1, 2012

Kofi Annan On Syria, Hard Choices Of Peacekeeping

Kofi Annan
Sergey Bermeniev UN

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 1:31 pm

Kofi Annan has dedicated his life to seeking peace. The Nobel Peace Prize winner was the first career United Nations staffer to become secretary-general, after having been an assistant secretary-general for human resources, then for finance, and finally the head of Peacekeeping Operations, where he would be sorely tested by devastating wars in Somalia, Rwanda and Bosnia.

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'Weekend Edition's' Taste Of Summer
3:47 am
Sat September 1, 2012

Swimming And Snacking On Egypt's North Coast

Freska are small, sweet treats — thin, crispy wafers sandwiching patties of sesame, peanuts or coconut, often held together by honey or sugar.
Kimberly Adams

Originally published on Sat September 1, 2012 1:31 pm

In the summer, many middle- and upper-class Egyptians flee the sweltering heat and humidity of Cairo to a string of private beach communities that hug the Mediterranean coast. Here, the weather is cooler and the breeze off the sea carries the shouts of snack sellers. Those vendors make it possible for beachgoers to purchase snacks without leaving the shade of their umbrellas.

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Monkey See
8:54 am
Fri August 31, 2012

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Dog Days And Classic Film Talk

NPR
  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

When you can't beat the slowness of late summer as an entertainment season, you can at least embrace it, and that's what we did this week. Dog days of summer winding down, you say? We say it's time to talk about pop culture dogs. Not dogs in the "lousy product" sense, but dogs in the sense of literal, actual dogs. Faithful, friendly, silly, whether the size of an ottoman or the size of a wallet.

Among the little treasures, Stephen is fond of this slightly obscure dog — at least these eight minutes of him.

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Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
7:03 am
Fri August 31, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Fiction, Week Of August 30, 2012

Ivan Doig's The Bartender's Tale, about a single father facing his past, debuts at No. 13.

Author Interviews
1:24 am
Fri August 31, 2012

Against The Odds, A 'Miracle Boy Grows Up'

Originally published on Fri August 31, 2012 10:48 am

Ben Mattlin has defied expectations for his entire life — starting with being alive at all. Mattlin has a condition called spinal muscular atrophy, and many infants born with it don't live past age 2. But Mattlin grew up to be one of the first students using a wheelchair to attend Harvard. He married, had a family and is now the author of a new memoir, Miracle Boy Grows Up: How the Disability Rights Revolution Saved My Sanity.

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu August 30, 2012

'For A Good Time': More (Dirty) Talk, Less Action

Lauren (co-writer Lauren Anne Miller) and Katie (Ari Graynor) are reluctant roommates turned business partners in For a Good Time, Call ....
Ryder Sloane Focus Features

Hot topic du jour, discuss: Do women rule the world?

First the girls took over the schools, with their stellar grades and all. Then they got the lion's share of the jobs. (Not quite true, but the claim generates Web punditry by the ton.)

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Movie Reviews
3:03 pm
Thu August 30, 2012

'Little Birds': Spiraling Down On Broken Wings

Wayward Lily (Juno Temple) falls for Jesse (Kyle Gallner), the head of a nihilistic skater gang from Los Angeles, in Little Birds, a story suffused with deprivation and despair.
Millennium Entertainment

Originally published on Fri August 31, 2012 8:46 am

The title of Elgin James' debut feature, Little Birds, refers to the two teenage girls at its center. But for all the sweetness and fragility that title suggests, one of those girls, Lily (Juno Temple), has a knack for destruction better suited to a charging rhino.

Lily, in fact, is the stuff of parents' worst nightmares about what their children might become as teenagers: sullen, willful, cruel, smart enough to know how to hurt those closest to her with a few well-chosen words but too dumb to know how to protect herself from harm.

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