Arts

Poetry
5:03 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Twinning Grief And Hope, A Poet Softens Pain's Sharp Edge

Knopf

Death and birth; grief and hope; fear and elation — these seeming opposites are made of much the same stuff, asserts Kevin Young in his eighth book of poems, which works to wrap itself around the extremes of a father's death and a son's birth. In a kind of poetic daybook or diary, Young tracks his unfolding emotions in the aftermath of his father's death, and, in a separate set of sequences, narrates his growing anticipation in the months leading up to, and then just after, the birth of his son.

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New In Paperback
5:03 am
Wed March 12, 2014

March 8-14: Bird-Watchers, A-Bombs And A Notorious Italian Dynasty

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

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Book Reviews
3:39 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

In 'Googleplex,' Plato Makes A Bid For Continuing Importance

Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:51 pm

Do the 1 percent contribute more to society than they take from it? Is the scientific idea of human nature more accurate than the humanist one? And what's the difference, really, between a boy who likes you, and a boy who "likes" you on Facebook?

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Politics
2:32 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

To Sell Health Care To Young People, Obama Steps 'Between Two Ferns'

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 4:51 pm

Transcript

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Long-time fans of the comedy website, "Funny or Die," know this already. But for the rest of you, this is the theme song of "Between Two Ferns." The Web series mimics a low-budget, cable-access interview program.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

It's the brainchild of actor and comedian Zach Galifinakis. He plays an unprepared host who fumbles through awkward conversations with celebrities. But the guest of his latest episode, released today, was a little different.

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Remembrances
2:32 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Joe McGinniss, Headline-Grabbing Author, Dies At 71

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 7:38 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Journalist and bestselling author Joe McGinness has died. The author of classic books about politics and true crime was 71 years old. He suffered from complications due to inoperable prostate cancer. As NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik recalls, McGinness courted controversy throughout his career.

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The Salt
2:21 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Save The Escargot! Snail-Devouring Predator Rears Its Head In France

A specimen of Platydemus manokwari collected in a greenhouse at Caen in Normandy. You can see its white pharynx protruding from the underside, ingesting soft tissues of a specimen of the Mediterranean snail.
Pierre Gros/PeerJ

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 5:06 pm

Oh, no, not the escargot!

A vicious little worm with an appetite for snails has made its European debut. And that has some scientists worried about the future of France's famed mollusk appetizer.

The New Guinea flatworm (Platydemus manokwari) is the lone worm on the Global Invasive Species Database's list of 100 of the world's most dangerous invaders. And last November, it was discovered in a greenhouse in Caen, Normandy.

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The Salt
11:48 am
Tue March 11, 2014

For A Faster-Aged Bourbon, You Need The Motion Of The Ocean

Jefferson's Ocean bourbon is aged on the high seas, a technique that takes advantage of basic physical chemistry. The bottles sell for $200 a piece.
Courtesy of OCEARCH

Originally published on Thu March 13, 2014 8:48 am

From its earliest days as America's homegrown whiskey elixir, Kentucky bourbon has been traveling on boats.

In fact, boats were a key reason why Kentucky became the king of bourbon. In the late 1700s, trade depended on waterways, and distillers in the state had a big advantage: the Ohio River. They'd load their barrels onto flatboats on the Ohio, which flowed into the Mississippi, taking their golden liquor as far down as New Orleans.

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Author Interviews
11:17 am
Tue March 11, 2014

For Working Moms, Key To Balance May Lie In Elusive Leisure Time

fourthexposure iStockphoto

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 3:33 pm

If your to-do list is so long that you are overwhelmed just looking at it, and if your list has you mentally racing back and forth between your responsibilities to your children and your job, what Brigid Schulte has to say may be helpful.

Overwhelmed: Work, Love and Play When No One Has the Time is about the pressures on working mothers and fathers that lead to a constantly racing heart, consuming guilt and the certainty that they've become inadequate at home and at work.

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NPR Story
9:55 am
Tue March 11, 2014

On Identity, Depression And Listening: Andrew Solomon Answers Your Questions

Writer Andrew Solomon speaking at TEDMED.
Courtesy of TEDMED

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 9:28 am

Writer Andrew Solomon delves deep into topics most wouldn't touch. His book Far From The Tree is a thoughtful look into parents raising children who are different from themselves: children with Down's syndrome, autism, or a complete loss of hearing and others. His TED Talk based on the book has been seen almost two million times.

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Monkey See
8:03 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Every Reality Show Is A True Story, And Other 'Bachelor' Lessons

This is what "I didn't pick you" looks like, coming from Bachelor Juan Pablo. Sorry, Clare.
Rick Rowell ABC

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 6:10 pm

Every reality show is an entirely true story.

It is not the story that it claims to be — the story of two tribes building a new civilization, the story of America's search for its next superstar — but it is a true story nevertheless. It is, or at least it contains, the true story of the conception, creation, marketing, viewing, analyzing and evolution over time of a piece of entertainment that lives in the swampy, foggy, half-real version of the truth that it creates.

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The Two-Way
5:28 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Book News: 'Fatal Vision' Author Joe McGinniss Dies

Joe McGinniss, who wrote a book about former Gov. Sarah Palin, poses for a photograph at the home he rented next to Palin's house in Wasilla, Alaska.
Dan Joling Associated Press

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

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Out Of Footsteps And Questions, Walking Man Makes A Song To Share

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 9:53 am

Listen. It's a command that Maud Casey's quick to utter, and it's one she repeats often in her new novel. With good reason: If you're listening closely enough, you might just hear her pull off a feat as graceful as it is clever. Out of the clanging of church bells, the ticking of watches, the snatches of overheard phrases, even the two clashing voices at the heart of her book — out of this hectic mess of sounds, she manages to create a delicate harmony.

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Author Interviews
1:05 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Not Enough Hours In The Day? We All Feel A Little 'Overwhelmed'

Milos Luzanin iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 8:50 am

Sometimes there just isn't enough time to get it all done. Washington Post journalist Brigid Schulte has certainly felt that way. "I was working all the time and yet never very good at what I was doing," she tells NPR's David Greene. " ... I felt all this pressure that I was a working mom and so I was always so guilty, and I didn't want to ruin their childhood. So I was up at 2 in the morning to bake cupcakes for the Valentine's party."

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Technology
2:22 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Path To Television's Future May Be Paved In Virtual Reality

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 5:59 pm

On display at South by Southwest is an attempt to create the future of storytelling. HBO is working with Oculus — maker of virtual reality goggles — to put the audience right into Game of Thrones.

Book Reviews
2:22 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Review: 'E.E. Cummings: A Life'

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 5:59 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Spring 1958, the poet Edward Estlin Cummings, or E.E. Cummings as most of us know him, was a passenger in writer John Cheever's car. Cummings had just spoken at the school of Cheever's teenage daughter and she was sitting in the back seat. Well, that day kicked off a fascination that led to Susan Cheever's recent biography "E.E. Cummings: A Life." Alan Cheuse reviews the book and shares the origins of his own fascination with Cummings.

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The Salt
2:02 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Freshly Baked Art: Cookies That Are A Feast For The Eyes

Rebecca Weld (aka The Cookie Architect) nabbed the Oscar of the cookie world for this series of Nantucket-themed biscuits.
Courtesy of Rebecca Weld via Cookie Connection

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 11:52 am

Rebecca Weld of Potsdam, N.Y., makes her living as an architect. But during her free time, she's hunched over the kitchen counter, like an alchemist, dripping food coloring drop by drop into icing to achieve the perfect color.

"I use rich colors for that dated, antique feel," Weld says.

Antique? Perhaps. But certainly not old school. Weld's cookie designs are astonishingly intricate — including a scene from an Adirondacks lake that looks like you could dive right into it.

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The Salt
12:01 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Sandwich Monday: The Dunkin' Donuts Eggs Benedict Breakfast Sandwich

Portable Eggs Benedict is a real blow to the already-suffering fork industry.
NPR

Originally published on Wed March 12, 2014 11:08 am

Making foods portable has long been a focus of food engineers. Gogurt did it for Yogurt, the McLeash made it easier to drag all your favorite McDonald's foods along with you. And now, by turning the open-faced sandwich closed and upping the viscosity of its Hollandaise, Dunkin' Donuts has brought portability to Eggs Benedict.

Miles: The full name is Eggs Benedict Arnold, because this sandwich is a traitor to everything breakfast should stand for.

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Author Interviews
11:45 am
Mon March 10, 2014

'Blood Will Out' Reveals Secrets Of A Murderous Master Manipulator

The FBI pulled fingerprints off decades-old immigration papers to find Clark Rockefeller's true identity.
Lisa Poole AP

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 1:02 pm

Let's say you meet a Rockefeller — Clark Rockefeller — and suddenly you have this connection to a world of wealth and privilege. Or so you think, because one day you find out he's an imposter. And not just an imposter — a murderer.

That's what happened to Walter Kirn, and Kirn's a smart guy — he's a journalist and the author of two novels that have been adapted into films, Up In The Air and Thumbsucker. How he was deceived, and what the consequences were, is the subject of Kirn's new memoir, Blood Will Out.

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The Salt
10:50 am
Mon March 10, 2014

The Upside Of All This Cold? A Boom In Ice Cider

The icy winter is just what's needed for tasty ice cider.
Herb Swanson for NPR

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 9:41 pm

If there's anything most of us are tired of this winter, it's bone-chilling cold.
It's enough to drive you to drink.

Literally. Because frigid weather is just what some enterprising artisans need to make a dessert wine that has been showing up on trendy tables and menus. Ice cider was invented in Quebec in the 1990s.

This time of year, it's fermenting on the other side of the border as well, as a few snowy states try to tap into the locavore market and turn perishables into profits.

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Code Switch
8:11 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Stokely Carmichael, A Philosopher Behind The Black Power Movement

Martin Luther King Jr., shown here with Stokely Carmichael during a voter registration march in Mississippi in 1966, regarded the younger Carmichael as one of the civil rights movement's most promising leaders.
Lynn Pelham Time

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 10:26 am

Before he became famous — and infamous — for calling on black power for black people, Stokely Carmichael was better known as a rising young community organizer in the civil rights movement. The tall, handsome philosophy major from Howard University spent summers in the South, working with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, known as SNCC, to get African-Americans in Alabama and Mississippi registered to vote in the face of tremendous, often violent resistance from segregationists.

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Monkey See
7:53 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Part Beauty, Part Hooey: That's A Wrap On 'True Detective'

Rust Cohle (Matthew McConaughey) had a lot to say about life, philosophy and beer on HBO's True Detective, which wrapped its first season Sunday night.
Lacey Terrell HBO

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 11:26 am

[This piece contains a detailed discussion of Sunday night's True Detective finale. If you haven't seen it and you plan to see it and you don't want to know what happens, stop reading.]

[Seriously, information ahoy.]

Spoiler alert: The dirty-faced, crazy-talking, disheveled impoverished guy did it.

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The Two-Way
5:27 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Book News: Ned O'Gorman, Poet And Founder Of Harlem School, Dies

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

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Asia
1:04 am
Mon March 10, 2014

'Sherlock,' 'House Of Cards' Top China's Must-Watch List

Plot lines adorn the walls of 221B Baker Street, a Sherlock Holmes-themed coffee shop in Shanghai.
Frank Langfitt NPR

Originally published on Mon March 10, 2014 7:59 am

What do an eccentric British detective, a cut-throat Washington pol and a bunch of nerds at Caltech have in common?

They are characters in some of the most popular foreign TV shows in China.

Over the past five years, The Big Bang Theory alone has been streamed more than 1.3 billion times. To appreciate how much some young Chinese love the BBC series, Sherlock, step inside 221B Baker Street. That's Holmes' fictitious address in London as well as the name of a café that opened last year in Shanghai's former French Concession.

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Author Interviews
3:23 pm
Sun March 9, 2014

'Boy, Snow, Bird' Takes A Closer Look Into The Fairy Tale Mirror

Helen Oyeyemi's previous books include Mr. Fox and The Icarus Girl.
Piotr Cieplak Penguin Group

Originally published on Sun March 9, 2014 5:00 pm

Boy, Snow, Bird reimagines the traditional Snow White fairy tale. Helen Oyeyemi's new novel explores beauty, envy and identity in New England in the 1950s — race and skin color shape the characters' experiences.

The wicked stepmother in this story is named Boy; the fair beauty is Snow. The birth of Snow's half-sister, Bird, reveals a long-buried family secret. Throughout the book, characters are haunted by a sense that things are not as they appear in their relationships and in the outside world.

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The Salt
12:36 pm
Sun March 9, 2014

A Theme Park For Foodies? Italians Say Bologna

Customers dine at the original Eataly in Turin, Italy, which opened in 2007.
demoshelsinki/Flickr

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 11:53 am

Italy has more UNESCO world heritage sites than any other country in the world, and its art and cultural riches have drawn visitors for centuries.

It also prides itself on being a culinary mecca, where preparing, cooking and serving meals is a fine, even sacred, art. And now that the country is in the deepest and most protracted recession since World War II, why not cash in on its reputation as a paradise for visiting gourmets and gourmands?

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Art & Design
7:06 am
Sun March 9, 2014

Destroyed By Rockefellers, Mural Trespassed On Political Vision

After the Rockefeller Center mural was destroyed in 1934, Diego Rivera recreated this version, named Man, Controller of the Universe, which is on display at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. The story of the original mural's creation and destruction is the focus of a Mexican Cultural Institute exhibition in Washington, D.C.
Courtesy of Museo Frida Kahlo

Originally published on Sun March 9, 2014 10:00 am

When Mexican artist Diego Rivera was commissioned in 1932 to do a mural in the middle of Manhattan's Rockefeller Center, some might have wondered whether industrialist tycoon John D. Rockefeller Jr. knew what he was getting into.

In 1934, the legendary artist's work was chiseled off the wall.

Now, in Washington, D.C., the Mexican Cultural Institute has mounted a show that tells what happened to Rivera's mural.

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Race
5:59 am
Sun March 9, 2014

Busting Stereotypes To Become A Prima Ballerina

Originally published on Sun March 9, 2014 10:00 am

Transcript

MISTY COPELAND: I'm Misty Copeland and I'm a soloist with American Ballet Theater.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

And how many years have you been dancing, Misty?

COPELAND: I have now been dancing for I think it's about 17 or 18 years but professionally for 13.

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National Security
5:59 am
Sun March 9, 2014

Do We Really Need The Air Force?

Originally published on Sun March 9, 2014 10:00 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Sunday Puzzle
5:59 am
Sun March 9, 2014

A High Five On The Seven Seas

NPR

Originally published on Sun March 9, 2014 10:00 am

On-air challenge: For each five-letter word provided, insert two letters after the first letter to complete a familiar seven-letter word.

Last week's challenge: The challenge came from listener Harry Hillson of Avon-by-the-Sea, N.J. Take the first name of a nominee for Best Actor or Best Actress at last Sunday's Oscars. You can rearrange these letters into a two-word phrase that describes his or her character in the film for which he or she is nominated. Who is this star, and what is the phrase?

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PG-13: Risky Reads
3:10 am
Sun March 9, 2014

For A Sheltered Teen, 'Thorn Birds' Was A Much-Needed Eye-Opener

iStockphoto

I recently met up with one of my former high-school English teachers, and talk turned naturally to books. I told her how influential the books I'd read throughout my high school years had been, and mentioned several titles by name — The Count of Monte Cristo, Alas, Babylon, Lord of the Flies, The Great Gatsby, Of Mice and Men.

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