Literature

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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Literature
7:16 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Book News: Guantanamo Reading Material Spurs More Controversy

The detention camp at the U.S. military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Michelle Shephard AP

Originally published on Fri August 23, 2013 7:24 am

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

N.B. — Book News is going on vacation next week. Your faithful correspondent will be in California sans laptop and praying that Jonathan Franzen doesn't choose that week to reignite any feuds with daytime talk show hosts. In the meantime, as always, leave your hot tips, scurrilous attacks and existential questions in the comments section or direct them to @annalisa_quinn on Twitter.

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Literature
7:24 am
Wed August 21, 2013

Book News: Barnes & Noble Founder Pulls Plug On Buyback Plan

A Barnes & Noble store in Bethel Park, Pa.
Gene J. Puskar AP

Originally published on Wed August 21, 2013 9:19 am

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

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Literature
3:42 pm
Tue August 20, 2013

Elmore Leonard, The 'Dickens Of Detroit,' Dies At 87

In his home library, Leonard kept copies of every book he'd ever written.
Paul Sancya AP

Originally published on Tue August 20, 2013 5:22 pm

The writer Elmore Leonard has died. He was 87 years old and had recently suffered a stroke.

For decades, Leonard — working at the very top of his profession as a crime writer — had been widely acclaimed, and universally read. He published 46 novels, which resulted in countless movie and TV adaptations, including the movies Out of Sight and Get Shorty and the TV series Justified.

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Literature
7:00 pm
Mon August 19, 2013

August 19, 2013 Shelf Discovery: Reviver

On this week’s Shelf Discovery, Kristin communes with the dead with Seth Patrick’s debut thriller, Reviver

Title: Reviver

Author: Seth Patrick

Pages: 407

Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books

ASIN: 978-1250021700

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

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Literature
3:07 am
Mon August 19, 2013

For You To Borrow, Some Libraries Have To Go Begging

The Tyson Library in Ludlow, Vt., is required to support itself independently; public libraries in Vermont receive no state funding.
Neda Ulaby NPR

Originally published on Mon August 19, 2013 4:14 pm

More than 90 percent of Americans say public libraries are important to their communities, according to the Pew Research Center. But the way that love translates into actual financial support varies hugely from state to state.

Vermont, for instance, brags that it has more libraries per capita than any other U.S. state. Some of them are remarkably quaint. In Ludlow, one library is a white clapboard Victorian, slightly frayed, ringed by lilies and sitting by the side of a brook.

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Literature
11:31 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Author, Feminist, Pioneer: The Unlikely Queen Of Sci-Fi

Originally published on Sun August 11, 2013 12:29 pm

Stephen Burt latest book is the poetry collection, Belmont.

We can go to science fiction for its sense of wonder, its power to take us to far-off places and future times. We can go to political fiction to understand injustice in our own time, to see what should change. We may go to poetry — epic or lyric, old or new — for what cannot change, for a sense of human limits, as well as for the music in its words.

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Literature
5:06 pm
Tue August 13, 2013

Maureen Metcalf interview: Part 2

Maureen Metcalf, co-author of the Innovative Leaders Guide to Transforming Organizations tells listeners what the hardest part of writing a book like this. Surprisingly, it's not the writing.

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