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"Most of today's books have an air of having been written in one day from books read the night before."

—Sébastien-Roch Nicolas de Chamfort (1741-94) French author, humorist


NPR On Books

A Lesson In How Teachers Became 'Resented And Idealized' 
  Tue, 02 Sep 2014 14:49:00 -0400 
    In The Teacher Wars, Dana Goldstein chronicles the history of the profession and current topics like tenure. She says the idea that teachers can help fight poverty has existed since the 19th century.

There's Much More To Apples Than Meets The Eye 
  Tue, 02 Sep 2014 11:47:00 -0400 
    Growing up, I knew two kinds of apples: red and green. Then I started dating an apple enthusiast and discovered we are in the midst of a rare apple renaissance.

Book News: New Haruki Murakami Book Coming Out In December 
  Tue, 02 Sep 2014 07:59:00 -0400 
    Also: the man who dug through John Updike's trash; a new biography of Robin Williams.

Accepting The Strange Brilliance Of 'Acceptance' 
  Tue, 02 Sep 2014 07:03:00 -0400 
    Jeff VanderMeer's Southern Reach trilogy comes to an end with Acceptance; reviewer Jason Sheehan says it's a maddening, fascinating read that will stay with you long after you finish the last page.

Doing The Hard Work Of Becoming A 'Real Man' 
  Mon, 01 Sep 2014 16:07:00 -0400 
    The process of becoming a man isn't always an easy one, but poet Saeed Jones says that reading Real Man Adventures by T Cooper, can make the journey more joyful.

For Anniversary, A New Chapter Of 'Charlie And The Chocolate Factory' 
  Mon, 01 Sep 2014 10:42:00 -0400 
    The chapter describes the Vanilla Fudge Room, an extra room in the chocolate factory. In it, Charlie Bucket goes to the factory with his mother – not his grandfather. The book turns 50 this month.

Author Charles Cumming Ponders The Seductions — And The Sins — Of Spying 
  Mon, 01 Sep 2014 07:03:00 -0400 
    NPR's Madhulika Sikka profiles Cumming, the author of thoughtful spy sagas like A Colder War. Cumming's books provide plenty of action, but also grapple with the moral quandaries of espionage.

Ghanaian Mystery Writer Says 'It's Easy To Get Murdered In Accra' 
  Mon, 01 Sep 2014 03:16:00 -0400 
    And, author Kwei Quartey adds, "The police may not find you for a little while." That's why he chose to set his second Detective Inspector Dawson book in Ghana's capital.

'A Thousand Mirrors' Shows Two Views Of One Long, Brutal War 
  Sun, 31 Aug 2014 18:01:00 -0400 
    In her new novel, Island of a Thousand Mirrors, Sri Lankan-American author Nayomi Munaweera shows the decades-long Sri Lankan civil war from the perspective of two girls who witness the horror.

This Time It's 'Personal': Lee Child Writes His 19th Jack Reacher Novel 
  Sun, 31 Aug 2014 07:46:00 -0400 
    The retired U.S. military policeman is in pursuit of a sniper in the latest installment of the suspense series. Child says its both fun and challenging to make these novels "the same but different."

Rescuing Science From The Military ... With Comics? 
  Sun, 31 Aug 2014 07:03:16 -0400 
    A new box set collects Matt Hawkins' comic Think Tank, which follows a sexy, scruffy scientific genius attempting to break away from his job developing lethal weapons for the military.

'Why Not?' David Mitchell On Mixing Fantasy And Reality In 'Bone Clocks' 
  Sun, 31 Aug 2014 05:20:00 -0400 
    The plotting in Mitchell's new novel isn't quite as complex as in previous works, but it takes an abrupt turn into dystopian fantasy towards the end. "It's what the book wanted to be," he tells NPR.

The Other Rock History 
  Sat, 30 Aug 2014 18:48:00 -0400 
    What makes an essential rock song? Music journalist Greil Marcus argues that it's not the stature of the performer, but the degree to which a song tells the story of rock 'n' roll itself.

Travelling Books: Vintage Van Carries Literature Around Lisbon 
  Sat, 30 Aug 2014 17:11:00 -0400 
    A mobile bookstore, loaded with translations of Portuguese classics, drives around selling books to tourists and locals alike. The van, called Tell a Story, plans to start traveling throughout Europe.

If These Shorts Could Talk ... New Book Tells 'Worn Stories' 
  Sat, 30 Aug 2014 07:30:00 -0400 
    In her new collection Worn Stories, Emily Spivack compiles odes to beloved pieces of clothing, written by celebrities and fashionistas.
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