Arts

This Week's Must Read
4:46 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

For Cheating Husbands, A Little Dose Of Revenge

cover detail

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 5:20 pm

Sarah Wendell is the author of the book, Everything I Know about Love I Learned from Romance Novels. She is also the cofounder of the romance-reviewing website, smartbitchestrashybooks.com.

With French President Francois Hollande the focus of international headlines for cheating on his partner, Valerie Trierweiler — who is in the hospital due to the shock — a happy resolution to their problems seems unlikely.

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Book Reviews
4:46 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

Rachel Joyce's 'Perfect' A Flawed, But Hopeful Novel

Courtesy of Random House

Originally published on Sat January 18, 2014 1:16 pm

It's 1972, when we meet 11-year-old Byron Hemmings, an English school boy living with his mother and sister in a country house. Byron's father Seymour works in the City (the financial district of London) and only comes home to see his family at the weekends. Though his work pays for the big house, the Jaguar that his wife drives and the private education his children receive, he is, in reality, only a visitor in their lives. Within several chapters one begins to believe that this is perhaps for the best — they don't seem a happy family.

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Author Interviews
3:25 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

A Strange Composition: Classical Music Meets Bioterror In 'Orfeo'

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 7:33 pm

Richard Powers' new novel, Orfeo, tells the story of an avant-garde classical music composer who finds himself dabbling in DNA. Like the Orpheus myth that inspired the book's name, this story takes its hero, Peter Els, on a journey. He becomes a fugitive accused of bioterror, but what follows is also a walk back into the recesses of his own memory told through the music and people he's loved and lost.

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Monkey See
12:37 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

You Can Now Send Someone You Temporarily Like A 'Bachelor' Bouquet

This is a real press release photo of the Bachelor bouquet.
Warner Brothers Entertainment

It's Friday, so let's take a moment to consider the greatest press release of the week. (And by "greatest," I mean "most ridiculous." As always.)

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The Salt
12:31 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

Diet Soda: Fewer Calories In The Glass May Mean More On The Plate

Ditching sugar-sweetened drinks in favor of diet ones shaves the empty calories. But it doesn't help if you make up for those calories on your plate.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Wed January 22, 2014 12:17 pm

If only dropping pants sizes were as easy as switching from Coke to Coke Zero.

Sure, you're cutting out empty calories when you ditch the sugar-sweetened drinks in favor of artificially sweetened ones. But there's a growing body of research that suggests this isn't really helping in the battle of the bulge.

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Remembrances
11:56 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Did Author Amiri Baraka 'Remix' Who He Was?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Paperback Fiction Bestsellers
11:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Fiction, Week Of January 16, 2014

Life After Life, Kate Atkinson's story about the many lives of Ursula Todd, appears at No. 1.

Hardcover Nonfiction Bestsellers
11:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Nonfiction, Week Of January 16, 2014

Random House

Gary Shteyngart writes of life as an immigrant in his memoir, Little Failure. It debuts at No. 2.

Hardcover Fiction Bestsellers
11:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

NPR Bestsellers: Hardcover Fiction, Week Of January 16, 2014

Debuting at No. 1, Sue Monk Kidd's The Invention of Wings explores slavery through two women's eyes.

NPR Bestseller List
11:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

NPR Bestsellers: Week Of January 16, 2014

The lists are compiled from weekly surveys of close to 500 independent bookstores nationwide.

Paperback Nonfiction Bestsellers
11:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Nonfiction, Week Of January 16, 2014

In My Beloved World, arriving at No. 4, Sonia Sotomayor chronicles her path to the Supreme Court.

Monkey See
9:23 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Pop Culture Happy Hour: Golden Globes And Eagle Eyes

NPR
  • Listen to Pop Culture Happy Hour

This week's show (which we taped before the Oscar nominations were announced, so you can bet we'll be getting to those later) catches us post-Golden-Globes for a conversation about awards hosts, speechifying, satisfying victories, and the odd surprises that keep us tuning in to the season's drunkest ceremony of them all.

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Wordless News
9:00 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Wordless News: Trademarking The Cronut

Maria Fabrizio

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 10:20 am

  • Trademark Officially Registered For The Cronut

Every day, illustrator Maria Fabrizio posts a news-inspired image on her Wordless News blog. This week, all of her pictures will be inspired by stories she hears on Morning Edition.

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TED Radio Hour
8:36 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Have You Changed Someone's Life Without Realizing It?

courtesy of TED

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 12:39 pm

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode Disruptive Leadership.

About Drew Dudley's TEDTalk

Drew Dudley calls on us to celebrate leadership as the everyday act of improving each other's lives.

About Drew Dudley

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TED Radio Hour
8:36 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Can Ordinary People Become Leaders?

Asa Mathat TED

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 12:39 pm

Part 5 of the TED Radio Hour episode Disruptive Leadership.

About Seth Godin's TEDTalk

Seth Godin says the Internet has revived the idea of tribes based on shared values and gives ordinary people the power to lead.

About Seth Godin

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TED Radio Hour
8:36 am
Fri January 17, 2014

How Do We Cultivate Women Leaders?

James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 12:39 pm

Part 2 of the TED Radio Hour episode Disruptive Leadership.

About Sheryl Sandberg's TEDTalk

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg gets to the bottom line for women who want to lead.

About Sheryl Sandberg

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TED Radio Hour
8:36 am
Fri January 17, 2014

How Do Leaders Deal With Failure?

Leaders can let you fail and yet not let you be a failure. — Stanley McChrystal
James Duncan Davidson TED

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 12:39 pm

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode Disruptive Leadership.

About Stanley McChrystal's TEDTalk

Four-star general Stanley McChrystal recounts some tough lessons about leadership he gained from the front lines — to listen, to learn, and to address the possibility of failure.

About Stanley McChrystal

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The Salt
7:20 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Congress Blocks Slaughtering Horses For Meat In U.S.

Americans may recoil at the thought of eating horse meat, but other countries feel quite differently, as the sign above this butcher shop in Paris attests.
Jacques Brinon AP

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 8:07 am

When a federal ban on slaughtering horses to produce horse meat was lifted several years back, ranchers including Rick De Los Santos, a New Mexico rancher and owner of Valley Meat Co., stepped up to start operations with an aim to export the meat.

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The Two-Way
6:16 am
Fri January 17, 2014

Book News: Hilary Mantel's New Book Reportedly Will Star Margaret Thatcher

Hilary Mantel accepted the award for Costa Book Of The Year in January 2013 in London.
Stuart Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 7:37 am

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

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Book Reviews
6:02 am
Fri January 17, 2014

E.L. Doctorow's New Novel 'Puzzling And Ultimately Disappointing'

iStockphoto

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 2:00 pm

E.L. Doctorow's 19th book, Andrew's Brain, is a real head-scratcher. This short, perplexing but occasionally potent novel presents particular challenges to a critic, as it's difficult to discuss its enigmas without giving away its odd twists. What I can say is that what starts out as a tale of lost love ends up taking a baffling political turn into rather biting commentary on post-Sept. 11 America.

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Music Reviews
3:51 am
Fri January 17, 2014

'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit' Is Capable Of 'Mild Diversion'

Originally published on Tue January 21, 2014 4:18 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

The late Tom Clancy was hero of American espionage writing, and the hero of his spy novels was Jack Ryan. On the big screen, Ryan has been played by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford and Ben Affleck.

Now, there's a new Ryan in town. Los Angeles Times and MORNING EDITION film critic Kenneth Turan has our review.

KENNETH TURAN, BYLINE: "Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit" is serviceable, but not compelling, something that could pass for the real thing if you're not looking too hard.

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Business
3:51 am
Fri January 17, 2014

DirecTV: Customers Balked At Weather Channel's Reality Shows

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 3:36 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

This next story began as pretty much your standard contract dispute. The Weather Channel wanted more money for its programming, and DirectTV wanted to pay less.

So, at 12:01 Tuesday morning, the satellite service dropped the Weather Channel and replaced it with a smaller producer of weather programming, which raises the question: How much do TV viewers really want or need weather information when they can get it from other sources?

NPR's Mandalit del Barco reports.

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The Record
11:02 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Gimme The Beat (Box): The Journey Of The Drum Machine

The Oberheim DMX rose to popularity in the mid-1980s, one of the first commercial drum machines that came close to mimicking real drum sounds.
Courtesy of Get On Down Publishing

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 4:06 pm

About 10 years ago, a disgruntled pianist in Los Angeles named John Wood began a popular bumper sticker campaign with the slogan, "Drum Machines Have No Soul." Not everyone was convinced, including producer Eric Sadler.

"Drum machines don't run themselves," Sadler says. "It's the people who put into the drum machines that give the drum machines soul, to me. I've definitely given some drum machines some soul."

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Code Switch
9:06 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Is There Room For Only One Black Film At The Top Of The Heap?

Chiwetel Ejiofor is nominated in the category of best actor for his role in 12 Years a Slave as the 86th Academy Awards nominations are announced Thursday in Beverly Hills, Calif.
Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 1:51 pm

First, let's acknowledge one thing: 12 Years a Slave has achieved something amazing and wonderful.

With nine Oscar nominations, it has proven a brutal story about the worst degradations of American slavery can attract the biggest accolades Hollywood has to offer.

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Movies
6:18 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Snubs And Surprises Abound In Oscar Nominations

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 12:49 pm

Oscar nominations were announced this morning, and though lots of the slots went to the expected titles — Gravity, American Hustle and 12 Years A Slave led the pack — there were certainly some surprises.

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Movie Reviews
4:44 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

A Churl Of A Squirrel, On The Make In The Big City

Squirrels Andie (Katherine Heigl) and Surly (Will Arnett) start out on opposite ends of the moral spectrum in The Nut Job.
Toonbox Entertainment, Ltd.

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Movie Reviews
4:02 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

'Big Bad Wolves,' On The Prowl In Tel Aviv

Religious-studies teacher Dror (Rotem Keinan) is the prime suspect in a series of gruesome murders in Big Bad Wolves, a bracing new thriller from the Israeli writer-director team of Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado.
Magnet Releasing

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Movie Reviews
4:02 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Two Families, Decidedly Unalike In Dignity

Ryota Ninomiya (Masaharu Fukuyama) and his son Keita (Keita Ninomiya) wrestle with identity and belonging in Like Father, Like Son.
Sundance Selects

Tokyo filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda is known for deft work with kids, sometimes in scenarios with little or no adult presence. But the English-language title of his latest movie, Like Father, Like Son, is a little misleading. There's no reference to a child in the Japanese title, which means "And So He Becomes a Father."

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Movie Reviews
4:02 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Jack Ryan Gets A Makeover, And A Quick Trip To Moscow

Chris Pine and Keira Knightley anchor Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, opposite Kevin Costner as a CIA veteran and Kenneth Branagh as the story's big bad.
Larry Horricks Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Fri January 17, 2014 2:05 pm

A franchise is what we used to call a Burger King or a Shell station, but nowadays the word appears more often in relation to movies: the Star Wars franchise, the Hunger Games franchise, the Jack Ryan franchise — or in the case of Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, the Jack Ryan franchise reboot. I don't know what's more depressing: that what fires up studio execs is the hunt for a new franchise or that critics have adopted this business lingo uncritically.

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The Salt
2:49 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

Good News: Americans Are Eating 78 Fewer Calories Every Day

family dinners, like this one at the Brown-Spencer home in Mechanicsville, Va." href="/post/good-news-americans-are-eating-78-fewer-calories-every-day" class="noexit lightbox">
Americans are dining out less and eating at home more, new government research shows. This may mean more family dinners, like this one at the Brown-Spencer home in Mechanicsville, Va.
Maggie Starbard NPR

Originally published on Thu January 16, 2014 5:55 pm

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has crunched some numbers, and its conclusion is that Americans are munching less. And on more healthful stuff.

On average, working-age adults were eating about 78 fewer calories per day in 2010, compared with five years earlier, according to a report released Thursday.

So what are we eating less of? Saturated fat. Researchers documented a 6 percent decline in calories from saturated fat between 2005 and 2010.

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