Literature

Literature
1:09 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Yasmin Thayná: 'I Always Wanted To Make Literature With My Hair'

Brazilian writer Yasmin Thayná, 20, participated in a local program aimed at cultivating artistic talent in low-income communities.
Courtesy of Yasmin Thayná

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 7:07 pm

While NPR's Melissa Block is in Brazil, we'll be showcasing the work of several Brazilian writers. On Tuesday we heard Tatiana Salem Levy's love letter to Rio. Now we turn to 20-year-old Yasmin Thayná, who discovered her love for writing as a teenager when she participated in a local program aimed at cultivating artistic talent in low-income communities.

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Literature
1:08 pm
Fri September 20, 2013

Book News: North Carolina County Bans 'Invisible Man'

Novelist Ralph Ellison, seen in Feb. 15, 1964.
AP

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 9:24 am

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

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Literature
11:23 am
Wed September 18, 2013

How Slavery Shaped America's Oldest And Most Elite Colleges

An early flier for an event at King's College --” which would later become Columbia University — included an advertisement for a slave auction.
John Minchillo AP

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 8:45 pm

A few years ago, Brown University commissioned a study of its own historical connection to the Atlantic slave trade. The report found that the Brown family — the wealthy Rhode Island merchants for whom the university was named — were "not major slave traders, but they were not strangers to the business either."

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Literature
12:02 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Book News: Fight Over Philosopher Ends With Gunfire In Russia

An artist's rendering of German philosopher Immanuel Kant.
Hulton Archive Getty Images

Originally published on Thu September 19, 2013 9:47 am

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

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Literature
7:00 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

September 16, 2013 Shelf Discovery: Chose the Wrong Guy, Gave Him the Wrong Finger

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin rehashes an old relationship with the audio version of Beth Harbison’s Chose the Wrong Guy, Gave Him the Wrong Finger.

Title: Chose the Wrong Guy, Gave Him the Wrong Finger

Author: Beth Harbison      

CDs: 7 (9 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio        

ISBN: 978-1427230843

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Literature
5:15 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

National Book Awards Look To Raise Profile ... And It's Not The First Time

Click here to see the full list." href="/post/national-book-awards-look-raise-profile-and-its-not-first-time" class="noexit lightbox">
The 2013 National Book Award long list for Young People's Literature was announced Monday. Click here to see the full list.
nationalbook.org

Originally published on Tue September 17, 2013 2:19 pm

You may be hearing a lot about the National Book Awards this week — at least that's what the National Book Foundation hopes. That's because they've made some changes to the awards that they hope will get more people talking about them. Over four days starting Monday, they will roll out their nominees in four different categories — beginning with Young People's Literature and ending Thursday with Fiction.

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Literature
10:06 am
Mon September 16, 2013

New Memoir Recounts Black Lives 'Reaped' Too Young

Jesmyn Ward won the National Book Award in 2011 for her novel, Salvage the Bones.
Tony Cook Courtesy of Bloomsbury USA

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 8:50 am

The writer Jesmyn Ward lost her brother in a car accident, and she was never the same — but her grief would broaden and her losses compound. First one friend died, then another and another — all young black men, and all of them dead before the age of 30.

In her wrenching new memoir, Men We Reaped, Ward takes us to her hometown of DeLisle, on Mississippi's Gulf Coast. It's a place ravaged by poverty, drugs and routine violence. But even so, the place — and the memory of those she has lost — keeps pulling Ward back.

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Literature
10:03 am
Mon September 16, 2013

Read The Rainbow: 'Roy G. Biv' Puts New Spin On Color Wheel

iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed September 18, 2013 8:50 am

There are a lot of fascinating details hiding below the surface in the world of color. For instance, scientists once thought the average color of the entire universe was turquoise — until they recalculated and realized it was beige.

In Japan, you wait at a stoplight until it turns from red to blue, even though it's the same green color as American stoplights.

And in World War II, the British painted a whole flotilla of warships pinkish-purple so they'd blend in with the sky at dusk and confuse the Germans. That's right — pink warships.

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Literature
3:43 am
Thu September 12, 2013

Tired Of Inequality? One Economist Says It'll Only Get Worse

Economist Tyler Cowen believes that income inequality in America is only increasing. His new book is called Average Is Over: Powering America Beyond the Age of the Great Stagnation.
Szasz-Fabian Ilka Erika iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Thu September 12, 2013 9:57 am

Economist Tyler Cowen has some advice for what to do about America's income inequality: Get used to it. In his latest book, Average Is Over, Cowen lays out his prediction for where the U.S. economy is heading, like it or not:

"I think we'll see a thinning out of the middle class," he tells NPR's Steve Inskeep. "We'll see a lot of individuals rising up to much greater wealth. And we'll also see more individuals clustering in a kind of lower-middle class existence."

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Literature
2:00 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

Woodrow Wilson Brought New Executive Style To The White House

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 4:41 pm

Woodrow Wilson, America's 28th president, left the White House in 1921 after serving two terms. But today he remains a divisive figure.

He's associated with a progressive income tax and the creation of the Federal Reserve. During his re-election bid, he campaigned on his efforts to keep us out of World War I, but in his second term, he led the country into that war, saying the U.S. had to make the world safe for democracy. The move ended America's isolationism and ushered in a new era of American military and foreign policy.

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Literature
3:05 am
Tue September 10, 2013

During Katrina, 'Memorial' Doctors Chose Who Lived, Who Died

Floodwaters from Hurricane Katrina fill the streets near downtown New Orleans on Aug. 30, 2005.
David J. Phillip AP

Originally published on Tue September 10, 2013 7:08 am

On Aug. 30, 2005, a doctor climbed the stairs through a New Orleans hospital to the helipad, which was rarely used, and so old and rusted it wasn't even painted with the hospital's current name.

From that helipad over Memorial Medical Center, the doctor looked out over New Orleans, now flooding after Hurricane Katrina. He considered the more than 2,000 people in the hospital below — 244 of them patients.

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Literature
7:00 pm
Mon September 9, 2013

September 9, 2013 Shelf Discovery: The Good Thief’s Guide to Berlin

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin breaks into Germany’s finest homes with The Good Thief’s Guide to Berlin.

Title: The Good Thief’s Guide to Berlin

Author: Chris Ewan           

Pages: 326

Publisher: Minotaur Books          

ISBN: 978-1250002976

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

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Literature
7:18 am
Mon September 9, 2013

Book News: Why Batwoman Can't Get Married

In this illustration released by DC Comics, Batwoman is shown as a 5-foot-10 superhero with flowing red hair, knee-high red boots with spiked heels, and a form-fitting black outfit.
AP

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

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Literature
1:46 pm
Thu September 5, 2013

What's Mittens Thinking? Make 'Sense' Of Your Cat's Behavior

Originally published on Thu September 5, 2013 6:43 pm

Cats have come a long way from being animals charged with catching mice to treasured, adorable creatures that snuggle with us in our beds. But this relatively new arrangement is creating issues for cats and the people who live with them.

John Bradshaw has studied the history of domesticated cats and how the relationship between people and cats has changed. He's the author of the new book Cat Sense: How the New Feline Science Can Make You a Better Friend to Your Pet, which is a follow-up to his book Dog Sense.

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Literature
7:13 am
Wed September 4, 2013

Book News: Malala, Girl Shot By Taliban, Calls Books 'Weapons That Defeat Terrorism'

Malala Yousafzai, shown here in March 2012, was shot in the head by the Taliban for supporting education rights for girls.
T. Mughal EPA/Landov

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

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Literature
7:00 pm
Mon September 2, 2013

September 2, 2013 Shelf Discovery: A Midsummer Night’s Scream

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin tours a scary movie set with A Midsummer Night’s Scream.

Title: A Midsummer Night’s Scream

Author: R. L. Stine

CDs: 4 (5 hours)

Publisher: Macmillan Audio        

ISBN: 978-1427231642

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

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Literature
3:16 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Honest Tea Founders Tell Their Story Of Not-Too-Sweet Success

Barry Nalebuff (left) and Seth Goldman cofounded Honest Tea in 1997. Goldman is the company's TeaEO. Nalebuff is a professor at Yale School of Management.
Crown Business

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 9:51 am

If you want to know what prompted Seth Goldman and Barry Nalebuff to cofound Honest Tea, here's the simple answer they give on their website: They were thirsty. Goldman had taken Nalebuff's class at the Yale School of Management, and they were both tired of the super sweet iced teas available in stores. So in the late 1990s, they started their own company based on the hunch that other people out there felt the same way.

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Literature
11:21 am
Thu August 29, 2013

Braving Both Napoleonic France And Teenage Angst With Aplomb

Originally published on Mon August 26, 2013 10:57 am

Fiona Maazel's latest novel is Woke Up Lonely.

The way my mom likes to tell it, I wasn't much of a reader growing up. My chief complaint of every book she dumped in my lap was that nothing happens. Ten pages in and no one had died.

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Literature
11:20 am
Thu August 29, 2013

'Heart' Of Iranian Identity Reimagined For A New Generation

In "The Nightmare of Siavosh," the young exiled Iranian prince dreams of his impending demise. Upon waking, he tells his wife, Farigis, about his fears regarding the tragic events to come.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Originally published on Fri August 30, 2013 7:14 am

A thousand years ago, a Persian poet named Abolqasem Ferdowsi of Tous obtained a royal commission to put the ancient legends and myths of Iran into a book of verse.

He called this epic Shahnameh, or "Epic of the Persian Kings." It took him more than three decades and comprises 60,000 couplets — twice the length of The Iliad and The Odyssey combined.

Author Azar Nafisi, who wrote the memoir Reading Lolita in Tehran, says the importance of this foundational myth epic to Iranians can't really be overstated.

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Literature
8:21 pm
Mon August 26, 2013

August 26, 2013 Shelf Discovery: Countdown City

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin waits out the end of the world with Countdown City.

Title: Countdown City

Author: Ben H. Winters     

Pages: 316

Publisher: Quirk Books     

ISBN: 978-1594746260s

And read Kristin's full review on NightsAndWeekends.com.

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