Arts

Deceptive Cadence
11:58 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Faster, Higher, Louder

Pablo Helguera

Got an idea for a classical cartoon, or a reaction to this one? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

Pablo Helguera is a New York-based artist working with sculpture, drawing, photography and performance. You can see more of his work at Artworld Salon and on his own site.

NPR Bestseller List
11:11 am
Fri July 27, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Week Of July 26, 2012

The lists are compiled from weekly surveys of close to 500 independent bookstores nationwide.

Paperback Nonfiction Bestsellers
11:10 am
Fri July 27, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Nonfiction, Week Of July 26, 2012

To Heaven and Back, Mary C. Neal's account of her brush with the afterlife, debuts at No. 8.

Paperback Fiction Bestsellers
11:07 am
Fri July 27, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Fiction, Week Of July 26, 2012

E.L. James' sensational erotic novel, Fifty Shades of Grey, is on the list for a 16th week.

Hardcover Nonfiction Bestsellers
11:04 am
Fri July 27, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Nonfiction, Week Of July 26, 2012

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 11:15 am

Monkey Mind, Daniel Smith's memoir of his experiences with anxiety, debuts this week at No. 10.

Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
11:02 am
Fri July 27, 2012

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Fiction, Week Of July 26, 2012

Daniel Silva's Vatican spy thriller, The Fallen Angel, debuts at No. 2.

Author Interviews
10:31 am
Fri July 27, 2012

In '1493,' Uncovering The World Columbus Discovered

Charles C. Mann is a journalist and contributing editor for Atlantic Monthly and Science.
J.D. Sloan

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 12:47 pm

This interview was originally broadcast on August 8, 2011. 1493 is now available in paperback.

"In fourteen-hundred-and-ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue," goes the old elementary school rhyme.

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Books
6:17 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Randy Wayne White: Fishing Guide To Crime Writer

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 11:59 am

Florida's southwest coast is home to both the author and his protagonist, Doc Ford, a marine biologist and former government agent. This encore presentation of the "Crime in the City" series revisits those islands and shoals. This piece initially aired July 24, 2009, on Morning Edition.

Poetry
1:13 am
Fri July 27, 2012

Honoring The Games, And The Past, With Poetry

Ron Tanovitz

Originally published on Sun July 29, 2012 10:34 pm

In the days of the ancient Greeks, poetry and sport went hand in hand at athletic festivals like the Olympics. Poets sang the praises of athletic champions and, at some festivals, even competed in official events, reciting or playing the lyre. Here at NPR, we're reviving that tradition with our own Poetry Games.

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Monkey See
3:48 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

It Was All A Dream (Or: Turns Out Spoilers Are Good For You)

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 6:24 pm

Chances are, if you're a regular reader of this blog you've read (or perhaps even posted) an incredibly vitriolic comment or two accusing the writer of the despicable crime of spoilers.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:50 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

The Classical Kegerator: Pairing Beer With Music

A flight of beers to accompany some musical flights of fancy.
iStock

Originally published on Tue September 18, 2012 4:17 pm

Throughout history, beer has been the drink of the populace. Traditionally, wine was reserved for the upper classes, due at least in part to the limited area in which grapes would grow, the subtlety of the flavors, the sheer price of production. Barley, on the other hand, grows much more plentifully than grapes do, in a much broader climate. It can be made much more inexpensively and in much greater volume, so beer supplied a vast peasantry with something safe, sustaining — and delicious — to drink.

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The Fresh Air Interview
12:23 pm
Thu July 26, 2012

Christopher Beha, On Faith And Its Discontents

Christopher Beha is an associate editor at Harper's magazine and the author of The Whole Five Feet.
Josephine Sittenfeld Tin House Books

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 4:15 pm

In the novel What Happened to Sophie Wilder, writer Charlie Blakeman runs into his former college love after 10 years and finds out that she has converted to Catholicism. Charlie can't make sense of her conversion, but as he finds out more about Sophie's past, he sees her life is more complicated than he previously thought. When Sophie once again disappears, Charlie sets out to discover what has happened to her.

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Book Reviews
7:00 am
Thu July 26, 2012

Haunting Memories, Elaborate Plotting In 'Harbor'

Tana French is the author of In the Woods.
Kyran O'Brien Viking Adult

Originally published on Thu August 2, 2012 12:23 pm

Home is everything. It's where we come from and where we run to, wanting to start anew. But it's also that place we can't escape, the one that's so much a part of us that no matter how old we get, it's impossible to erase its presence from our memories, our bodies.

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Books
12:03 pm
Wed July 25, 2012

Exclusive First Read: 'The Pigeon Pie Mystery'

Originally published on Wed July 25, 2012 2:38 pm

  • Hear Chapter Five Of 'The Pigeon Pie Mystery'

The year is 1898. Our heroine, Princess Alexandrina, better known as Mink, is the suddenly penniless daughter of the late, disgraced Maharajah of Prindur, and the best female marksman in England. Queen Victoria has offered Mink a grace-and-favor house (rent-free lodging granted by a monarch) at Hampton Court Palace, where the dispossessed princess and her large-footed serving maid, Pooki, fall in with a cast of classic English eccentrics, a wandering American, and a beetle-eating hedgehog named Victoria.

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Book Reviews
7:03 am
Wed July 25, 2012

Sinclair Rejects Olympic Excess In 'Ghost Milk'

The London landscape is changing, to its historical detriment, says Iain Sinclair, in the ramp-up to the 2012 Olympic Games.
Mie Ahmt iStockphoto.com

For every successful Olympic Games, such as Sydney's in 2000, there are twice as many failures. Montreal famously declared that the 1976 Olympics would pay for themselves; instead the city needed forty years to square its debt, and meanwhile the Expos left town. Beijing's Bird's Nest is crumbling; the hotels far from downtown are vacant. And in debt-wracked Athens, whose lavish Games went ten times over budget, farmers graze their pigs in the abandoned weightlifting stadium.

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New In Paperback
7:03 am
Wed July 25, 2012

New In Paperback July 23-29

Demon Fish cover.

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 6:21 pm

Fiction and nonfiction releases from Stephen King, Ali Smith, Charles C. Mann Juliet Eilperin and Paul Hendrickson.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Monkey See
5:44 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

Best YA Fiction Poll: You Asked, We Answer!

iStockphoto.com

Our Best YA Fiction poll has only been live for a few hours, and already the cries of outrage are echoing through the intertubes! Where are A Wrinkle in Time, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Ender's Game? What about Watership Down? My Side of the Mountain? Where the Red Fern Grows? Most of Judy Blume's oeuvre? The Little House books?

We hear you, I promise.

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Deceptive Cadence
3:06 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

In Aurora, An Uncommon Brain Saves A Young Composer's Life

Composer and violinist Petra Anderson, who was critically injured in the Aurora shooting.
Randall Gee courtesy of Petra Anderson

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 3:31 pm

Petra Anderson is a gifted 22-year-old composer and violinist who was critically injured in the movie theater shootings last Friday in Aurora, Colo. She was shot four times. Three shotgun pellets landed in her arm and a fourth nearly killed her.

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Author Interviews
2:04 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

'The Twilight War' Between The U.S. And Iran

David Crist's father, George (left), discusses operations against Iranian attack boats with Navy Lt. Paul Hillenbrand. George Crist, a Marine Corps general, was commander of CENTCOM from 1985-1988.
Courtesy of David Crist

Originally published on Tue July 24, 2012 3:54 pm

In The Twilight War, government historian David Crist outlines the secret history of America's 30-year conflict with Iran. The book, based on interviews with hundreds of officials as well as classified military archives, details how the covert war has spanned five American presidential terms and repeatedly threatened to bring the two nations into open warfare.

Crist tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross that there have been several incidents that have almost resulted in battle over the past 30 years.

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Deceptive Cadence
12:04 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

Alexei Lubimov's Debussy: Less Dreamy, More Dynamic

Claude Achille Debussy in a 1909 portrait.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 6:10 pm

With the sesquicentennial of Claude Debussy's birth coming up fast on Aug. 22, you'd think there would be a small blizzard of new Debussy releases. This year, not so much; maybe it's a sign of the economic times and industry reality that there's no great rush to add the zillionth recording of such incredibly loved repertoire to the catalog. But every so often, a project comes along that demands a revisiting of music you think you know inside and out. This two-disc set of Debussy headed by Russian pianist Alexei Lubimov is just such a release.

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Book Reviews
7:18 am
Tue July 24, 2012

Experimental Fiction At Its Finest — And Funniest

Experimental fiction in North America began with a genius of a doyen in Paris: Gertrude Stein, whose aesthetic assertion that writers shape and form and reform the medium of language the way sculptors work with stone, painters work with light and shape and composers work with sound, changed Hemingway forever and, thus, changed the nature of the American short story — or the American art story, at least.

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100 Best Books
7:03 am
Tue July 24, 2012

Best-Ever Teen Novels? Vote For Your Favorites

Harriet Russell

Originally published on Tue August 7, 2012 10:40 am

Last month we asked you, our audience, to nominate titles for a top-100 list of the best young adult — YA — fiction ever written. Thousands of you sent in nominations. We've tabulated those suggestions and, with the help of an expert panel, narrowed the list to the 235 finalists you see below.

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Books
7:03 am
Tue July 24, 2012

Young Adult Fiction Finalists

Originally published on Tue July 24, 2012 1:01 pm

Many of you told us you just can't wait until mid-August — when we unveil the results of the Young Adult Fiction Vote — to start reading. So here's the complete list of finalists, nominated by you and the NPR Young Adult Fiction Panel. Happy Reading!

13 Little Blue Envelopes, by Maureen Johnson

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Book Reviews
4:47 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

Review: 'The Diesel'

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 5:19 pm

The Diesel was originally published in Arabic in 1994 and is the first novel by poet Thani Al-Suwaidi. William Hutchins recently translated the book into English.

PG-13: Risky Reads
3:58 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

'In The Attic': Whips, Witches And A Peculiar Princess

cover detail
Simon and Schuster

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 7:57 pm

Gillian Flynn's most recent novel is Gone Girl.

At age 13, I survived almost entirely on green apple Jolly Ranchers and Flowers in the Attic, and to this day I can't look at the book without my mouth watering. My much loved copy must have come from a supermarket (it was impossible to go to a supermarket in the '80s to, say, secretly stock up on green apple Jolly Ranchers, without a V.C. Andrews book lurking by checkout).

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Deceptive Cadence
3:44 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

A Know-It-All's Guide To Olympic Music

Among all things official at the Olympics, like the flag, is music composed for the opening and closing ceremonies.
Tony Duffy Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 26, 2012 6:24 pm

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Author Interviews
12:43 pm
Mon July 23, 2012

Unraveling The Genetic Code That Makes Us Human

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 3:18 pm

There's enough DNA in the human body to stretch from the sun to Pluto and back. But don't confuse DNA with your genes, says writer Sam Kean.

"They are sort of conflated in most people's minds today but they really are distinct things," he tells Fresh Air's Terry Gross. "Genes are like the story and DNA is the language that the story is written in."

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Poetry
10:07 am
Mon July 23, 2012

It's A Genre! The Overdue Poetry Of Parenthood

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri July 27, 2012 2:26 pm

Birth, most people would agree, is a fairly important event. And poetry, most people would agree, tends to focus on subjects of intense emotional significance. So one would think the poetry of early parenthood would be a rich and varied category, filled with reflections on physical transformation, the emergence of life, the realities of infanthood and so forth.

One would be wrong.

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Crime In The City
5:14 am
Mon July 23, 2012

Jo Nesbo's Fiction Explores Oslo's Jagged Edges

Crime novelist Jo Nesbo says despite Oslo's well-kept streets and sharply dressed residents, the city has a dark and seedy side.
Odd Andersen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 24, 2012 2:52 pm

The sun descends reluctantly over Norway's waterside capital, but novelist Jo Nesbo is determined to show Oslo's dark side, to convince me the real city, in parts, is as dirty, twisted and seedy as his own fictional version.

It's a tough sell in this city of bike helmets, clean streets and smiling blond people.

The author has written nine successful novels about the reckless Oslo police detective Harry Hole, a nonconformist with a mercurial mind.

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Author Interviews
3:06 pm
Sun July 22, 2012

'Savages' Return In 'The Kings Of Cool'

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Mon July 23, 2012 10:05 am

Oliver Stone's latest film, Savages, opened in theaters earlier this month. The movie centers on two young marijuana growers, Ben and Chon, who live and deal in California, alongside their girlfriend O — short for Ophelia. They find themselves thrust into a world of violence and murder when a Mexican drug cartel comes after their business. The film is based on the book by crime writer Don Winslow, who also co-wrote the screenplay.

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