Arts

Monkey See
6:39 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Entirely Real Photos: Wax Will Smith Gets Jiggy With Wax George Clooney

The Will Smith waxwork figure is unveiled at Madame Tussauds on May 22, 2013 in London, where it hangs out with the George Clooney and Emma Watson wax figures, because why not?
Ben A. Pruchnie Getty Images

As you know, we at Monkey See enjoy creepy wax figurines maybe more than anything in the world, and now, Wax George Clooney (whose adventures we have chronicled in the past) has been joined at a photo shoot in London by Wax Will Smith, as well as Wax Emma Watson. You know, just to hang out. To talk about movies. To talk about being made of wax.

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First Reads
5:38 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Exclusive First Read: 'TransAtlantic' By Colum McCann

Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 9:51 am

  • Listen to the Excerpt

Like his 2009 National Book Award-winning novel, Let the Great World Spin, Colum McCann's TransAtlantic is a braided novel that weaves together the stories of various characters — some historical, others invented. The storylines illustrate the deep and complex connections tying Ireland and the U.S. over a span of some 150 years, beginning with Frederick Douglass, who visits Ireland in 1845 to drum up abolitionist support, and ending with Sen.

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The Two-Way
5:25 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Book News: Kipling Admitted Plagiarizing 'Promiscuously'

English poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling poses in 1925.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

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

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

The Courage To Cross An Ocean, Explored In 'TransAtlantic'

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 4:36 pm

In 1845, Frederick Douglass sailed to Ireland on a speaking tour to raise money for the abolitionist cause back home. About 75 years later, two airmen, Jack Alcock and Teddy Brown, performed the first nonstop trans-Atlantic flight, flying 16 hours from Newfoundland to land in an Irish bog. And 79 years after that, George J. Mitchell, the former senator from Maine, repeatedly crisscrossed the ocean — New York, Belfast, New York, Belfast — to steer the Northern Ireland peace process on behalf of President Clinton.

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Kitchen Window
12:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Rhubarb Brings Spring To The Table

Nicole Spiridakis for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 11:48 am

Rhubarb — like spring itself — is fleeting and lovely. A vegetable that often masquerades as a fruit in sweet dishes, it is a true harbinger of the season, appearing in April and, if we're lucky, lasting until July. But it is best to seize rhubarb's moment and take full advantage as soon as its delicate pink and green ribs start appearing in markets and gardens.

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Author Interviews
4:38 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Novel Examines Afghanistan War From A Pakistani Perspective

The sun sets just east of Chaman, Pakistan, near the Afghan border, on Nov. 8, 2001.
Laura Rauch AP

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 6:43 am

Two young men — foster brothers in love with the same woman — leave their small Pakistani town for Afghanistan in late 2001. Jeo, a medical student, wants to help wounded civilians and Mikal is there to look after Jeo, but their good intentions aren't enough to keep them safe in an increasingly dangerous war zone.

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Monkey See
3:15 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Comikaze: Not Just The Other Comic Convention

Last year's Comikaze, seen here in September 2012, attracted tens of thousands of attendees.
AP

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 6:43 am

You may be familiar with the San Diego Comic-Con, a constantly expanding convention for fans that started as a niche event for comic-book nerds and is now a sprawling pop-culture event.

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Pop Culture
1:34 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

What Happens To Spelling Bee Kids? Years Later, The Prize Is Perspective

Srinivas Ayyagari onstage in 1992 (left); at right, Ayyagari today. "Seeing someone from ESPN commenting on your style and strategy was bizarre and weird. But it's the closest I'll ever come to being an athlete," Ayyagari says.
Srinivas Ayyagari

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 6:45 am

For an academic contest pitting young spellers against the dictionary, the Scripps National Spelling Bee has taken on the intensity of the fiercest athletic events. Feeling the warmth of television lights — not to mention nerves and distractions — all while sports commentators are analyzing your "style" and approach is something only a select club of young word-nerdy Americans gets to experience. How does that early experience affect these mostly middle-school-aged kids later in life?

Lasting Memories

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Author Interviews
1:29 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Stephen King On Growing Up, Believing In God And Getting Scared

Stephen King delves into the seedy underworld of carnies for his latest novel, Joyland.
Hard Case Crime

Originally published on Fri June 14, 2013 12:29 pm

For 20 years, Stephen King has had an image stuck in his head: It's a boy in a wheelchair flying a kite on a beach. "It wanted to be a story, but it wasn't a story," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. But little by little, the story took shape around the image — and focused on an amusement park called "Joyland" located just a little farther down the beach.

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Digital Life
12:11 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

What's Happened To Wonder? The Bliss Of Confusion

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 12:12 pm

As children, we are allowed to be confused, lost, and full of wonder. As adults in the age of Google, we are expected to project confidence, knowledge and understanding. Ta-Nehisi Coates, senior editor for The Atlantic, talks about how learning a foreign language reignited his imagination.

Monkey See
10:50 am
Tue May 28, 2013

A Parade Of Goobers: 17 Actual People Presented To 'The Bachelorette'

Desiree's parade of goobers. You'll notice the one without the shirt on. And the fact that many of them are the same guy.
Kevin Foley ABC

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 11:49 am

Last night brought the premiere of the new season of The Bachelorette, in which Desiree, who was rejected by Sean on the last season of The Bachelor, was presented with 25 men from whom to choose. The theory is that if television producers choose 25 guys for you to pick from, surely one of them is your soul mate. Makes sense!

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New In Paperback
9:56 am
Tue May 28, 2013

May 27-June 2: Oxford In 1590, London In 2008 And The Net Now

Shadow of Night book cover

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

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

Monkey See
9:09 am
Tue May 28, 2013

Bad News, Men: You're Not Very Charming

I hate to break this to you, Men Of The Entire United States (Especially Actors), but The Atlantic has just run a lengthy piece pronouncing you un-charming.

At first, Benjamin Schwarz seems to mean "good conversationalist" when he says "charming." He says:

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Monkey See
7:52 am
Tue May 28, 2013

Let's Rush To Judgment: 'Don Jon'

Tony Danza and Joseph Gordon-Levitt in Don Jon.
Daniel McFadden Relativity Media

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The Two-Way
7:00 am
Tue May 28, 2013

Book News: Not Everyone's A Fan Of Amazon's Fan Fiction Move

Seattle-based Amazon announced last week that it will begin selling fan fiction. CEO Jeff Bezos speaks at a 2009 event.
Mario Tama Getty Images

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 7:57 am

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

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Author Interviews
1:44 am
Tue May 28, 2013

'The Son': A Texas Saga With Guilt And Gore To Go Around

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 8:16 am

The American West has always been fertile ground for writers. Now Philipp Meyer steps into that territory with his new novel The Son. It's a family saga that traces the settling of Texas from its days as a wild frontier to the oil boom — with no shortage of violence.

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Art & Design
1:39 am
Tue May 28, 2013

Plans For Smithsonian Museum 'Bubble' May Have Burst

The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden proposed adding a giant, inflatable structure that would balloon out of its top and side.
Roger L. Wollenberg UPI/Landov

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 8:04 am

Call it the Smithsonian's bubble problem. One of the Smithsonian museums — the Hirshhorn museum for contemporary art — came up with an ambitious new design to add more space: Why not build a giant, inflatable structure that would be big enough for people to walk around in?

But some of the Smithsonian's trustees in Washington, D.C., haven't been blown away by the bubble.

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Theater
2:28 pm
Mon May 27, 2013

New Plays Turn Passive Audience Members Into Participants

Originally published on Mon May 27, 2013 2:57 pm

Several productions in New York's smaller theaters aren't content with providing passive experiences — the audience is asked to participate. Here Lies Love, a new David Byrne musical about Imelda Marcos at the Public Theater, is set in a disco and the audience moves around, from scene to scene, dancing all the while. Natasha, Pierre and the Comet of 1812, is an electronic pop opera based on a portion of Tolstoy's War and Peace, and is set in a Russian restaurant where audiences are served a meal and vodka as part of the performance.

Pop Culture
12:11 pm
Mon May 27, 2013

From 'Groovy' To 'Slacks,' The Words That Date You

Transcript

NEAL CONAN, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION from NPR News. I'm Neal Conan in Washington. Cathy, a fifth-grade teacher in Stryker, Ohio, wrote to tell us that she elicited giggles when she complemented a student's footwear and called them thongs. A self-described ex-hippie named Paul emailed that he catches himself using the phrase, that's heavy. Sooner or later, once common words or phrases take on new meanings or just seem way, way out of date. Call and tell us about the term you've used that dates you.

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Author Interviews
6:33 am
Mon May 27, 2013

Questions For Barbara J. King, Author Of 'How Animals Grieve'

iStockphoto.com

Attributing human characteristics to animals makes for great cartoons, but it's not usually considered rigorous science. Now, a new book argues that animals do think and feel in ways similar to humans.

Barbara J. King is a professor of anthropology and a commentator on NPR's science blog, 13.7. And her book, How Animals Grieve, makes a powerful case for the presence of love, affection and grief in animals — from a house cat mourning her lost sister to elephants who pay respects to the bones of their matriarchs.

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Books
5:03 am
Mon May 27, 2013

Do Sit Under The Apple Tree With These Romantic Reads For Memorial Day

World War II had more than its share of horrors — but it was also a very romantic era, as this famous photograph attests.
Alfred Eisenstaedt Time

Each May we end the month and begin the summer season with a grateful nod to our veterans, especially those who gave their lives in service to our country. And this year, we mark an anniversary that may not be as obvious as Pearl Harbor or D-Day, but is certainly as important: 1943, the year WWII paused before it turned around. The year the Allies were able to stop Axis victories and advances on all fronts. It would be a few more months — well into 1944 — before the Allies seriously started pushing Hitler back, but 1943 was the beginning of the end.

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Author Interviews
2:43 am
Mon May 27, 2013

'1913': Leads A Tour Of The World A Century Ago

Originally published on Mon May 27, 2013 3:10 am

When World War I broke out in 1914, it unleashed unimaginable carnage and upheaval. By the time the war ended four years later, nearly 40 million lives had been lost, dynasties had collapsed and the global political order was shaken to its core. But what about the year prior to the war? David Greene talks to Charles Emmerson, author of 1913: In Search Of The World Before The Great War.

Movies I've Seen A Million Times
2:07 pm
Sun May 26, 2013

The Movie Gillian Anderson Has 'Seen A Million Times'

A scene from the animated film Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa.
Dreamworks AP

Originally published on Sun May 26, 2013 3:25 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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Books
8:35 am
Sun May 26, 2013

The Women Who Inspired Other Women With 'Mary Tyler Moore'

The Mary Tyler Moore Show first aired in 1970.
AP

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 9:26 am

In the '60s, many of the women on television were cute, a little silly and married. A couple shows even featured women who were sweetly supernatural — think Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie. Mary Richards, though, was single, sassy and filled with joy. She was practically magic to a new generation of women.

The beloved Mary Tyler Moore Show went on the air in 1970, and now, more than four decades years later, it's still a source of inspiration.

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Author Interviews
8:00 am
Sun May 26, 2013

The Women Who Inspired Other Women With 'Mary Tyler Moore'

The Mary Tyler Moore Show first aired in 1970.
AP

Originally published on Sun May 26, 2013 8:22 am

In the sixties, many of the women on television were cute, a little silly, and married. Mary Richards, though, was single, sassy, and filled with joy. A new book about the Mary Tyler Moore Show focuses on the women behind the scenes of the show that's still inspiring women today.

PG-13: Risky Reads
5:03 am
Sun May 26, 2013

'Portnoy's Complaint': A Surprisingly Therapeutic Birthday Present

Originally published on Mon May 27, 2013 9:41 am

Lucas Mann's latest book is called Class A: Baseball in the Middle of Everywhere.


ADVISORY: This essay contains sexual content and strong language that some readers may find offensive.

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From Our Listeners
5:00 am
Sun May 26, 2013

Three-Minute Fiction Readings: 'Compromise' And 'The F'

iStockPhoto.com

Originally published on Sun May 26, 2013 3:25 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 The Art of Compromise by Lindsey Appleford of Boerne, Texas, and Claudia Who Found the F by Sean Enfield of Denton, Texas. 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
5:00 am
Sun May 26, 2013

The Art Of Compromise

iStockPhoto.com

"It's just not here," Erin announced as she rifled through the last cookbook. She held the book apart by its front and back covers, gave the fanned pages a shake. "If I could just remember the magazine I found the recipe in, maybe I could get a copy off the internet." Erin worried her lower lip between her teeth as she often did when trying to recollect a memory just out of mind's reach. It was a habit Jeremy still found endearing.

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Three-Minute Fiction
5:00 am
Sun May 26, 2013

Claudia Who Found The F

iStockPhoto.com

July 25th, the sun washes over Blossem, and the Texas heat seeps into my blood stream. Every day prior to this, it only beat against my flesh, turning me darker shades of tan and giving the illusion that I was actually my mother's daughter and not just a light-skinned replacement. Today, though, as I head to work, I could feel the rays moving with my blood, and I could see my skin glow.

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Author Interviews
4:55 am
Sun May 26, 2013

'Brilliant Minds' Behind 'Mary Tyler Moore'

Originally published on Sun May 26, 2013 7:08 am

In the sixties, many of the women on television were cute, a little silly, and married. A couple shows even featured women who were sweetly supernatural - think Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie. Mary Richards, though, was single, sassy, and filled with joy. She was practically magic to a new generation of women.

The beloved Mary Tyler Moore Show went on the air in 1970, and now, more than 35 years later, it's still a source of inspiration.

Read more

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