Arts

Author Interviews
11:08 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Fictional 'Mothers' Reveal Facts Of A Painful Adoption Process

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 2:38 pm

After years of trying to conceive, novelist Jennifer Gilmore and her husband decided to pursue a domestic open adoption. They were told they'd be matched within a year; it took four. And along the way they faced complicated decisions and heartbreak.

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Art & Design
9:44 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Styling The NBA

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 10:35 am

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. For the end of our program today, we want to talk about two aspects of American style. In a few minutes, we're going to talk about tattoos. They used to be something you got when you went into the Army or to jail, but now they've gone mainstream. We'll talk with a leading tattoo artist about that in just a minute.

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Art & Design
9:44 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Tattoos Still Taboo?

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 10:40 am

America has a love/hate relationship with tattoos, but body ink is becoming more and more mainstream. Host Michel Martin speaks with Fatty, the owner of Fatty's Custom Tattooz in Washington, D.C, about America's fascination with tattoos, and the fading cultural taboos.

The Two-Way
5:35 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Book News: Newly Found Pearl Buck Novel To Be Published This Fall

At her desk in the study of her Philadelphia townhouse in 1967, Pearl Buck looks at a bound volume of the magazine Asia from 1925 that contained her first published work.
AP

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Wed May 22, 2013

A Different Kind Of Immigrant Experience In 'Americanah'

PIUS UTOMI EKPEI AFP/Getty Images

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's fourth book, Americanah, is so smart about so many subjects that to call it a novel about being black in the 21st century doesn't even begin to convey its luxurious heft and scope. Americanah is indeed a novel about being black in the 21st century — in America, Great Britain and Africa, while answering a want ad, choosing a lover, hailing a cab, eating collard greens, watching Barack Obama on television — but you could also call it a novel of immigration and dislocation, just about every page tinged with faint loneliness.

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Kitchen Window
3:23 am
Wed May 22, 2013

Real Butterscotch: The Beauty Of Sugar And Dairy Transformed

Deena Prichep for NPR

Originally published on Thu May 23, 2013 5:43 am

Butterscotch is going through something of a revival. So much so, that two Kitchen Window contributors wanted to write about it. Therefore, welcome to the more-than-you-ever-thought-you-needed-to-know-about-butterscotch special coverage. Today is the second in our two-part butterscotch series. Last week's column has more recipes featuring this resurgent flavor.

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Parallels
12:39 pm
Tue May 21, 2013

China Builds Museums ... But Will The Visitors Come?

One of the highlights of the new China Art Palace in Shanghai is a giant digital rendering of a famous ancient scroll, "Along the River During Qingming Festival," which includes figures that walk and talk. The work was first presented at the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 3:43 pm

Shanghai did something last fall that few other cities on the planet could have even considered. It opened two massive art museums right across the river from one another on the same day.

The grand openings put an exclamation point on China's staggering museum building boom. In recent years, about 100 museums have opened annually here, peaking at nearly 400 in 2011, according to the Chinese Society of Museums.

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Humans
12:05 pm
Tue May 21, 2013

The Art And Science Of Motivation

Transcript

JENNIFER LUDDEN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Jennifer Ludden in Washington. Neal Conan is away. It's graduation season, and that means 20-somethings and parents sitting through long commencement ceremonies while the older and wiser give advice. Here's comedian Stephen Colbert speaking at the University of Virginia.

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Movie Interviews
11:46 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Soderbergh's Liberace, 'Behind The Candelabra'

Michael Douglas and Matt Damon star as Liberace and his young lover, Scott Thorson, in Steven Soderbergh's new HBO biopic Behind the Candelabra.
Claudette Barius HBO

Originally published on Thu May 23, 2013 4:45 pm

Director Steven Soderbergh had been looking for a way to frame a film about the extravagant entertainer Liberace for years when a friend recommended the book Behind the Candelabra: My Life with Liberace.

The book — a memoir — is by Scott Thorson, who for five years was Liberace's lover, though that wasn't publicly disclosed at the time.

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Monkey See
9:22 am
Tue May 21, 2013

The Starfleet Divide: The 'Star Trek' Universe Revisits One Of Its Great Debates

Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto in Star Trek Into Darkness.
Zade Rosenthal Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 3:18 pm

[Caution: contains pretty abundant spoilers about the Star Trek universe, but only fairly nonspecific ones about the new film.]

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The Two-Way
5:16 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Book News: Stephen King's New Bogeyman? Digital Publishing

Stephen King holds a special pink Kindle given to him at a 2009 unveiling event for the Amazon Kindle 2.
Mario Tama Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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First Reads
5:03 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Exclusive First Read: 'Big Brother' By Lionel Shriver

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 8:37 am

  • Listen to the Excerpt

Lionel Shriver doesn't shy away from hot-button topics. Her breakout novel, We Need to Talk About Kevin, from 2003, was about the mother of a teen who kills seven classmates in a school massacre (it was made into a film with Tilda Swinton). Her 2010 novel, So Much for That, which took aim at the American health care system, was nominated for the National Book Award.

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Tue May 21, 2013

American Voices On 'The Unwinding' of America's Values

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 8:39 am

Halfway through The Unwinding, George Packer — author of the highly praised The Assassins' Gate: America in Iraq (2005)delineates how quickly political idealism can disappear when one becomes exposed to a world of easy money.

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Author Interviews
1:09 am
Tue May 21, 2013

After Crashing In Canadian 'Abyss,' Four Men Fight To Survive

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 9:13 am

On the night of Oct. 19, 1984, Erik Vogel was uneasy about flying. It was snowing; his plane's de-icer and autopilot weren't working; and his co-pilot had been bumped to fit one more passenger on his 10-seater. But the young pilot was behind schedule and he felt like his job was on the line, so he took off, as he did most days, shuttling between the remote communities that dot the Canadian wilderness.

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Author Interviews
1:08 am
Tue May 21, 2013

Courtside Chemistry: How NBA's Phil Jackson Won 'Eleven Rings'

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 9:13 am

Phil Jackson is famous not only for coaching stars — Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen with the Chicago Bulls, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal with the L.A. Lakers — but also for his distinctive "zen" approach to basketball. He introduced his teams to yoga and meditation, and regularly assigned his players books to read.

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Performing Arts
3:28 pm
Mon May 20, 2013

At L.A.'s UnCabaret, 25 Years Of Letting It All Hang Out

Beth Lapides (with music director-producer Mitch Kaplan) is the founder and ringmaster at UnCabaret, a Los Angeles comedy institution that's marking its 25th anniversary this year.
UnCabaret

Originally published on Mon May 20, 2013 7:07 pm

A lot of the stand-up comedy that gets done in Los Angeles is really just comics auditioning for parts in TV or movies.

Not at UnCabaret: For 25 years, it's been a place to hear unvarnished, rough-edged ideas being tried out — mostly for the first and possibly only time.

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Television
12:19 pm
Mon May 20, 2013

Brooks: 'I'm An EGOT; I Don't Need Any More'

Once vehemently opposed to the idea of being the subject of a documentary, Brooks had a change of heart. The result is a new American Masters episode, Mel Brooks: Make a Noise.
WNET/American Masters

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 9:54 am

Over the 60 years that Mel Brooks has been in the entertainment business, his name has become synonymous with comedy. He is the man who broke Broadway records for most Tony Award wins with The Producers (an adaptation of his own movie); who satirized Westerns and racism in Blazing Saddles; and who poked fun at monster movies with Young Frankenstein.

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Monkey See
6:57 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Reaction Saturation And Sunday Night Television

iStockphoto.com

Consider what goes on in your brain when you, for instance, you watch an episode of Mad Men.

First, you have a reaction. "That's weird" is a reaction. So is "yuck." So is "wow." "This doesn't make sense" is a reaction, "that's a great dress" is a reaction, and "WHAT?" is a reaction.

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The Two-Way
5:22 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Book News: J.K. Rowling Tells 'Harry Potter' Backstories

J.K. Rowling.
Ben Pruchnie Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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New In Paperback
5:03 am
Mon May 20, 2013

May 20-26: A Coup, An Ancient Battle And One Steamy Diary

* Some of the language in the summaries above has been provided by publishers.

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

Arts & Life
1:06 am
Mon May 20, 2013

Nostalgia For Sale As Captain Kangaroo's Pals Are Auctioned Off

More than 500 items from the Captain Kangaroo show — including Dancing Bear's life-sized costume.
Nate D. Sanders Auction House

Originally published on Mon May 20, 2013 8:38 am

The classic children's show Captain Kangaroo aired on TV for nearly 30 years, starting in 1955. After its creator and star, Bob Keeshan, died in 2004, his estate donated a few of his beloved hand puppets to the Smithsonian.

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Author Interviews
2:09 pm
Sun May 19, 2013

Decade Later And Across An Ocean, A Novel Gets Its Due

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 4:18 pm

Sometimes you need some distance to appreciate a classic.

That was certainly the case for John Williams' novel Stoner. When it was originally published in 1965, the only publication to mention the book at all was The New Yorker, in its "Briefly Noted" column. The novel received admiring reviews over the years, but sold just 2,000 copies and was almost immediately forgotten.

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Movies I've Seen A Million Times
2:09 pm
Sun May 19, 2013

The Movie Katie Aselton Has 'Seen A Million Times'

Actors Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze in Kathryn Bigelow's 1991 action film, Point Break.
Fotos International Getty Images

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 4:18 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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Author Interviews
2:09 pm
Sun May 19, 2013

Unacceptable Anger From 'The Woman Upstairs'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 4:18 pm

The main character of Claire Messud's novel, The Woman Upstairs, is a good woman. Nora is a 37-year-old elementary school teacher — responsible, kind and reliable. She is also very, very angry.

Her dreams of being an artist have been suppressed; she is seething inside with rage and resentment. But she keeps her anger in until she meets another woman who has everything she does not: a husband, a child and a successful art career. And then everything begins to unravel. As Nora's relationship with the woman and her family deepens, her inner life begins to come out.

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The Salt
6:05 am
Sun May 19, 2013

Giant Renaissance Food People Descend Upon New York

Vertumnus, Arcimboldo's portrait of Emperor Rudolph II
Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Tue May 21, 2013 2:30 pm

It takes a lot of chutzpah to reduce one of the most powerful men on Earth to a pile of fruits and vegetables.

Luckily for art lovers, Giuseppe Arcimboldo had nerve to spare.

Arcimboldo created this unorthodox produce portrait of Holy Roman Emperor Rudolph II back in 1590. By that time, the Italian artist had been painting for the emperor and his powerful Habsburg family for more than 25 years, so presumably, they'd grown used to his visual jokes. (The emperor has "peachy" cheeks and "ears" of corn, get it?)

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You Must Read This
5:03 am
Sun May 19, 2013

Ghost Ships, Murders, Bird Attacks: Stories To Keep You Awake

Ethan Rutherford is the author of The Peripatetic Coffin and Other Stories.

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From Our Listeners
4:54 am
Sun May 19, 2013

Three-Minute Fiction: 'Ten Ring Fingers' And 'Ghost Words'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 4:18 pm

NPR's Bob Mondello and Susan Stamberg read excerpts of two of the best submissions for Round 11 of our short story contest. They read Ten Ring Fingers by Tamara Breuer of Washington, D.C., and Ghost Words by Matheus Macedo of Winthrop, Mass. You can read their full stories below and find other stories on our Three-Minute Fiction page or on Facebook.

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Three-Minute Fiction
4:42 am
Sun May 19, 2013

Ten Ring Fingers

iStockphoto.com

She found the first ring on a night that smelled of body odor and beer. The bar's last customers had finally given up hope of taking her to bed and staggered away, leaving her to clean the stains of their desperation. She mopped the floor as quickly as possible to escape the place that made her feel uncomfortable in her own skin.

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Three-Minute Fiction
4:41 am
Sun May 19, 2013

Ghost Words

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed May 22, 2013 9:22 am

The letter smelled of lavender and vanilla, like she couldn't decide which perfume to use so she used both. Her hand-writing had been drawn with the careful precision only seventh-grade girls in love have patience for. Hidden behind the words were indents and scratches, ghosts of words that weren't quite right, rewrites on top of rewrites.

The envelope lay flat and perfectly sealed in the middle of the hallway. If it had not been in front of her locker I may have left it there. I thought of all possibilities before tearing open the smooth flap of pink paper.

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Movie Interviews
3:41 am
Sun May 19, 2013

One Couple, Nearly 20 Years, All 'Before Midnight'

Julie Delpy and Ethan Hawke star in Before Midnight, the third film in a series that follows near 20 years of a relationship.
Despina Spyrou Courtesy Sony Pictures Classics

Originally published on Sun May 19, 2013 12:11 pm

In 1995, an unintended cult-classic trilogy was born with a film that centered on a simple, romantic premise. Two strangers in their early 20s spend a spontaneous night together in Vienna. The characters, Jesse and Celine, split ways in Before Sunrise, but they reunited nine years later for a sequel, Before Sunset.

In that sequel, Jesse and Celine, played by Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, find each other in Paris for another brief rendezvous. Even though both are now in other relationships, they can't shake their connection.

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