Arts & Life

The Two-Way
6:25 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.

Read more
First Reads
6:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Exclusive First Read: 'TransAtlantic,' by Colum McCann

Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 10:51 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.

Read more
Book Reviews
6:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

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

Originally published on Sun June 9, 2013 5:36 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.

Read more
Kitchen Window
1:03 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Rhubarb Brings Spring To The Table

Nicole Spiridakis for NPR

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 12:48 pm

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.

Read more
Author Interviews
5:13 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 7:43 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.

Read more
Monkey See
4:15 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 7:43 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.

Read more
Arts & Life
2:40 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Memorial Day turns deadly in Alabama

istockphoto

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Alabama State Troopers investigated two deadly crashes in the state during the Memorial Day holiday period. The holiday period is considered the 78 hours between 6 p.m. Friday and midnight Monday. The figure only reflects trooper-investigated traffic fatalities. A final statewide tally will be computed as other law enforcement agencies report their weekend statistics. Authorities say both of this weekend's trooper-investigated fatal crashes occurred on Saturday. Authorities said both involved motorcycles, and helmets were used by the people involved.

Pop Culture
2:34 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 Tue May 6, 2014 1:25 pm

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

Read more
Author Interviews
1:56 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 1:29 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.

Read more
Digital Life
1:11 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

What's Happened To Wonder? The Bliss Of Confusion

Originally published on Tue May 28, 2013 1:12 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
11:50 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 12:49 pm

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!

Read more
New In Paperback
10:56 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
10:09 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:

Read more
Monkey See
8:52 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

I admire Joseph Gordon-Levitt a lot, both because of his mix of performances in both big movies and little movies and because he made such a good transition from kid actor to adult actor with substantially less awkwardness than most.

Read more
The Two-Way
7:42 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 8:57 am

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

Read more

Pages