Arts & Life

For writer Jesmyn Ward, Mississippi is a place she loves and hates all at once.

She grew up and still lives in the tiny town of DeLisle, Miss., close by the Gulf Coast, where, she writes, African-American families like hers are "pinioned beneath poverty and history and racism."

It's a pair of rites we see often at the passing of great authors: first, the tributes from those who loved their books; then, the good-faith effort to find their unfinished works and shepherd them to the bookshelves they never would have found otherwise.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Stevie Wonder comes prepared for an interview.

STEVIE WONDER: (Laughter).

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED BROADCAST)

WONDER: (Vocalizing, singing) Wheel of '84.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

2017 has been a record year in Hollywood, but it's not a good record. This has been the worst summer at the box office in a decade. NPR's Neda Ulaby reports even hits like "Wonder Woman" and the latest "Guardians Of The Galaxy" could not save a summer of flops.

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Etelka Lehoczky has written about books for The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and Salon.com. She tweets at @EtelkaL.

Bernard Pomerance, who wrote the Tony Award-winning play The Elephant Man about the life of a seriously deformed man in Victorian England, has died at the age of 76, according to his agency.

His agent Alan Brodie told The Associated Press that Pomerance "died Saturday of complications from cancer at his home in Galisteo, New Mexico."

Just a few pages into My Absolute Darling, Martin Alveston quizzes his 14-year-old daughter, Turtle, on her vocabulary; it's a subject the young girl is having considerable trouble with at her middle school. Frustrated by his daughter's progress, Martin tosses her notebook across the room, and places a semiautomatic pistol in front of her. He holds a playing card in his hand, daring her to shoot it. "You're being a little b----," he says. "Are you trying to be a little b----, kibble?"

If you've seen the hit musical Hamilton — or even if you've only heard about it — you might want to know more about the founding father who was the United States' first Secretary of the Treasury. And if so, the Library of Congress just made it easier to go right to the source.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

TERRY GROSS, HOST:

“Mike Denny: The Shadow of a Single Man”

Author: Delbert Reed     

Publisher: Paul W. Bryant Museum

Pages: 325

Price: $24.95 (Hardcover)

We've recapped Season 7 of HBO's Game of Thrones here on Monkey See. Spoilers abound.

First off: 85 minutes! Long for an episode of Game of Thrones, sure, but put that in perspective: It's roughly equal to the running time of any given movie based on a '90s SNL sketch. So even if you're one of the many who have found this season lacking, consider that "The Dragon and the Wolf" ate up the same amount of your lifespan as A Night at the Roxbury.

Tobe Hooper, who directed the influential horror movie The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, died on Saturday in Los Angeles.

The LA County coroner's office confirmed the death to NPR, but did not provide a cause.

Hooper was a little-known, barely-funded filmmaker when he made the movie that echoed through the horror genre for years to come.

Maya Rodale is a best-selling romance author.

Remembering our nation's history through photographs is the focus of the newest and first special exhibition at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.

"More Than A Picture" features more than 150 images from 80 well-known and lesser-known photographers who documented the lives of African-Americans. Their works showcase subjects who, in ordinary and extraordinary moments, shaped history.

If you lie to save your marriage, does it truly count as a betrayal? This is the question at the heart of Stay With Me, a debut novel about a young couple's infertility, set among the coups and counter-coups of early '90s Nigeria. It's a time when thieves and rapists send polite letters to the neighborhood warning they'll be arriving soon; where the news can coolly announce one head of state in the morning and another by night.

American Humane Association

 

The 2017 Hero Dog Awards seek to find and recognize dogs who help people in many important ways. Dogs are nominated in one of seven categories: Service Dogs, Emerging Hero Dogs, Law Enforcement/Arson Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Military Dogs, Guide/Hearing Dogs, Search and Rescue Dogs.

  

  

******************

My Absolute Darling is Gabriel Tallent's first novel, and no less than Stephen King has called it a "masterpiece" to rank with To Kill A Mockingbird and Catch-22.

It's the story of a clever, resourceful, and lonely 14-year-old girl named Turtle Alveston. Her mother took her own life when Turtle was a child, and she's grown up in the woods of Mendocino County, Calif., with her father, Martin, who taught her how to hunt, shoot, and survive.

Jason Sheehan knows stuff about food, video games, books and Starblazers. He is currently the restaurant critic at Philadelphia magazine, but when no one is looking, he spends his time writing books about giant robots and ray guns. Tales From the Radiation Age is his latest book.

For a book that is all about death and dying — for a book which counts among its main characters an actual embodiment of Death (named Suzie) — Michael Poore's Reincarnation Blues is surprisingly goofy.

For a little while Thursday, young adult literature had a new reigning New York Times best-seller. In the paper's list of most popular YA hardcover novels, a new face had toppled Angie Thomas' The Hate U Give from the perch it has occupied nearly half a year. By mid-afternoon, though, the order the YA world had known for weeks was restored.

Chuck Lorre is, without question, television's sitcom king. He created two of today's top money-making syndicated shows — The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men — and his other hits over the years include Dharma & Greg, Grace Under Fire, Mike & Molly and Mom.

So why did every single broadcast network turn down his latest sitcom?

One word: Cannabis.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

Copyright 2017 Fresh Air. To see more, visit Fresh Air.

DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

An Aug. 14, 1932, headline in the The New York Times read: "Eclipse to be best until August 21, 2017."

Sometimes scientists get it so right.

But not always. Sometimes science goes wrong, and with terrible consequences.

This is the topic of Paul A. Offit's very important book Pandora's Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong, just published in April.

Consider this tale detailed in the book:

Can Festival

Aug 25, 2017

The great Andy Warhol demonstrated that anything can be art if you give it the right price. So in this game, Ophira and Jonathan pretend to be hoity-toity art critics describing everyday beverage cans as if they're works of art.

Heard On Rita Dove: Set Phasers To Poem

Pages