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NPR's brings you news about books and authors along with our picks for great reads. Interviews, reviews, the NPR Bestseller Lists, New in Paperback and much more.
Updated: 1 day 5 hours ago
A dirty deed and official cover-up drive the plot in John le Carre's A Delicate Truth. The novel sets its sights on old-boy corruption and corporate criminality at the heart of the "Deep State," but critic Alan Cheuse finds this latest effort lacks the tension of le Carre's Cold War novels.
Some novels you read to find out what happens next, and some you read to linger in the moment. In Tom Drury's Pacific, plot takes a back seat to sharp observation and deadpan wit. The book juxtaposes scenes of teenaged Micah as he moves to Hollywood, with stories set in Micah's heartland hometown.
After six years, author Walter Mosley breathes life back into his detective hero Easy Rawlins — thought dead after crashing his car off a cliff. Easy embarks on another case, but as the lines blur between death and dying, he may discover answers to questions he hadn't thought to ask.
Neil Gaiman's new book is based on a speech he delivered to graduates of Philadelphia's University of the Arts. When life gets tough, he told them, "make good art." It's advice that served him well when he turned a failed '90s TV series into the "much-loved" novel Neverwhere.
In 2011, Jessica Buchanan, an aid worker in Somalia, was kidnapped by land pirates. For 93 days she fought off despair while her husband, Erik Landemalm, wondered if he'd ever see her again. In a two-part interview, Buchanan and Landemalm recall Buchanan's capture and her dramatic rescue by Navy SEALs.
Albert Camus' Algerian Chronicles, finally available in translation, collects essays, columns and speeches from the writer's days as a young journalist. Camus was criticized for his moderate approach to the French-Algerian war, but reviewer Jason Farrago says Chronicles is a guide to "how to be just in a difficult world."
The fourth volume in Robert Caro's monumental biography of Lyndon Johnson is The Passage of Power; it explores the period between 1958 and 1964 during which Johnson went from powerful Senate majority leader to powerless vice president to — suddenly — president of the United States.
In softcover nonfiction, Tom Reiss explores the inspiration for The Count of Monte Cristo, Ben MacIntyre depicts a World War II effort to fool the Nazis, and Justin Lee recounts his struggle for acceptance as a gay Christian. In fiction, Dennis Lehane imagines a Prohibition-era mobster.
Curse words change over time — back in the ninth century you could say the "s" word and no one would be offended. But we always need a set of words that are off-limits, and in her new book, author Melissa Mohr explains how the words that shock us reveal a lot about society's values.
David Greene speaks with Jessica Buchanan and her husband Erik Landemalm about their book Impossible Odds. It's the story of Jessica's abduction, along with a fellow aid worker, by Somali pirates in 2011. In the first of the two-part interview, we hear how Jessica was abducted, and how she refused to fall into despair while in captivity.
In a new book, former U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe explores how to fix the gridlock in Congress. Earlier this year, the Republican from Maine left the Senate out of frustration with the partisan stalemate. "It has to change, for the country," she says. "People deserve ... better representation."