Arts

NPR Bestseller List
12:03 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

NPR Bestsellers: Week Of November 28, 2013

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

Paperback Nonfiction Bestsellers
12:03 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Nonfiction, Week Of November 28, 2013

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:56 pm

Dog Shaming, Pascale Lemire's photo catalog of poorly behaved pets, appears at No. 11.

Paperback Fiction Bestsellers
12:03 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Fiction, Week Of November 28, 2013

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:35 pm

At No. 6, Jojo Moyes' Me Before You describes the romance between a disabled man and his caretaker.

Monkey See
11:47 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Zombies And Hope On 'The Walking Dead'

Bob Stookey (Larry Gilliard Jr.), Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan), Tyreese (Chad Coleman), Beth Greene (Emily Kinney), Sasha (Sonequa Martin-Green) and Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) on AMC's The Walking Dead.
Gene Page AMC

[Plot details regarding Sunday night's Walking Dead midseason finale follow. Proceed at your own risk.]

This is a strange thing to say about a TV show which ended its fall season Sunday with the death of two children, a gun battle, waves of flesh-eating zombies and a decapitation.

But it is easy to forget, in the midst of all the carnage, that The Walking Dead is essentially a show about hope.

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Art & Design
11:09 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Designer B Michael On Bringing Color To The Runway

Courtesy of b micheal America

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 8:56 am

After a brief career on Wall Street, veteran designer B Michael followed his calling to the world of fashion. He got his start as a millinery designer for the '80s soap opera Dynasty. Soon after, he began designing couture gowns leading him to work with an extensive client list that includes Cicely Tyson, Angela Basset, Lena Horne, Whitney Houston, and Cate Blanchett — to name a few.

After spending decades in the business B Michael says, "Every successful story will tell you they've had to reinvent themselves."

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Monkey See
10:30 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Among The Holiday Glut, 3 Movies About The Creative Life

Tom Hanks plays the man himself, Walt Disney, alongside Emma Thompson as Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers, in Saving Mr. Banks.
Francois Duhamel Walt Disney Pictures

It's movie-binge time — that month-long surge of Oscar hopefuls and would-be blockbusters Hollywood always winds up the year with. On All Things Considered, I talked about some of the big tent-pole pictures: Anchorman 2, The Wolf of Wall Street, the second Hobbit installment and so on.

But here, let's winnow the list down a bit to three films you might want to keep an eye out for if you're intrigued by the artistic process — how artists think and work.

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Arts Benefit
7:00 am
Mon December 2, 2013

UIS Art Gallery Kicks Off Silent Auction Fundraiser

From a previous silent auction
Credit uis.edu/visualarts/gallery/

The UIS Visual Arts Gallery hosts multiple exhibits throughout the year that highlight the work of contemporary artists from all over the country. But once annually, the gallery walls are filled with mostly local art - and it's all for sale to the highest bidder. Jeff Robinson heads the UIS gallery - he recently told us all about plans for this year's silent auction,  December 2nd through the 12th: 

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The Two-Way
6:30 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Book News: Leaked Salinger Stories Pose An Ethical Dilemma

A photo of J.D. Salinger taken in September 1961.
AP

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

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Movies
3:50 am
Mon December 2, 2013

'Best Man Holiday' Resonates Across Racial Lines

The Best Man Holiday is Malcolm Lee's sequel to his film Best Man.
Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 6:36 pm

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Around the Nation
3:50 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Cleveland Celebrates 30 Years Of 'A Christmas Story'

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:27 pm

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

It's the season for endless viewings of "A Christmas Story," the story of Ralphie Parker, who really wants a Red Ryder BB gun.

(SOUNDBITE OF MOVIE, "A CHRISTMAS STORY")

MELINDA DILLARD: (as Mother Parker) No. You'll shoot your eye out.

JEAN SHEPHERD: (as Ralphie) Oh, no! It was the classic mother-BB-gun-block. You'll shoot your eye out.

INSKEEP: We would take any excuse to bring up "A Christmas Story," and today, we have one, because the movie is 30 years old.

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Author Interviews
4:41 pm
Sun December 1, 2013

Nightclub King Jon Taffer Sets A High Bar

iStockphoto

Originally published on Sun December 1, 2013 6:55 pm

Jon Taffer is the king of the bar business. Over the past three decades, he has managed dozens of bars and nightclubs, and is a consultant for bar owners all over the country.

Most recently, he has put his expertise to use as the host of the popular reality show Bar Rescue. Bar and nightclub owners with failing businesses ask Taffer for his help. In return, Taffer brings a team of bartenders, chefs and designers with him to revamp every part of the operation. On the show, as in person, Taffer is a tough, no-nonsense guy.

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Movie Interviews
7:24 am
Sun December 1, 2013

Refashioning A Gospel Story In 'Black Nativity'

Originally published on Sun December 1, 2013 1:25 pm

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

In 1961, at the height of the civil rights movement, Langston Hughes wrote the musical play "Black Nativity." It featured an entirely black cast, and it was the first play to incorporate a real gospel choir.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

CHOIR: (Singing) I'm coming home for you, you think (unintelligible).

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You Must Read This
6:03 am
Sun December 1, 2013

A Skeptic Is Swept Away By The Bromance-At-Sea In 'Master'

iStockphoto

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 12:33 pm

In the autumn of 1995, the editor of an academic journal (we'll call him Dave) recommended a book.

"It's set during the Napoleonic Wars — "

"Not interested."

"No, listen. It's about the friendship of Captain Jack Aubrey of the Royal Navy — "

"I hate Horatio Hornblower."

" — and Dr. Stephen Maturin, his ship's surgeon, who's also a naturalist and secret agent. It sounds unlikely, I know, but just trust me. You'll love it."

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Sun December 1, 2013

For Anjelica Huston, The 'Story' Starts Long Before Los Angeles

Evening Standard Getty Images

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 6:12 pm

When I saw that the actress Anjelica Huston had written a memoir, I thought, "Oh, good, I'll read that." I assumed it would be filled with wild stories from '70s and '80s Hollywood and her relationship with Jack Nicholson. What it was like to win an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. General movie-star debauchery, carried out in the wedge shoes and oversized sunglasses of that era.

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Around the Nation
11:52 pm
Sat November 30, 2013

'Fast & Furious' Star Dies In Car Crash

Actor Paul Walker in March.
Joel Ryan AP

Paul Walker, the star of the "Fast & Furious" movie series, died Saturday in a car crash that killed one other person north of Los Angeles, his publicist said. He was 40.

Walker died Saturday afternoon, Ame Van Iden told the Associated Press.

A statement on the actor's Facebook page said he was a passenger in a friend's car, and that Walker was in the area to attend a charity event for his organization Reach Out Worldwide.

"We ... are stunned and saddened beyond belief by this news," the statement said.

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The New And The Next
4:22 pm
Sat November 30, 2013

Bickering In Bangladesh; Curling; Glow-In-The-Dark Tattoos

Courtesy of Ozy.com

Originally published on Sat December 7, 2013 2:31 pm

The online magazine Ozy covers people, places and trends on the horizon. Co-founder Carlos Watson joins All Things Considered regularly to tell us about the site's latest discoveries.

This week, Ozy deputy editor Eugene Robinson fills in for Carlos to tell NPR's Arun Rath about two dueling divas in Bangladeshi politics, the rising popularity of an obscure winter sport, and tattoos that you can wear to work.

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History
4:08 pm
Sat November 30, 2013

'Project Unspeakable' Asks The Big Questions

A group of people inspired by a book on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy are creating theater around the idea that his death could have been part of a conspiracy. And the questions don't stop there.

Pop Culture
4:08 pm
Sat November 30, 2013

In The World Of Podcasts, Judge John Hodgman Rules

In addition to Hodgman's work on Judge John Hodgman, he has contributed pieces to This American Life and Wiretap. His most recent book, That Is All, was published in 2011.
Brantley Gutierrez Courtesy of Maximum Fun

Originally published on Sat November 30, 2013 5:08 pm

Should the kitchen sink's built-in dispenser be filled with dish soap or hand soap?

Can you stop family members from using your childhood nickname?

Is a machine gun a robot?

These are the kinds of pressing decisions before the court on the podcast, Judge John Hodgman.

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Author Interviews
6:31 am
Sat November 30, 2013

'Gold' Ponders The Glittering Metal's Allure

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 3:53 pm

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Books News & Features
6:22 am
Sat November 30, 2013

Sherman Alexie Wants You To Be A 'Superhero' For Indie Bookstores

Sherman Alexie models an Indies First tote bag. He plans to put in shifts at five Seattle bookstores this Saturday.
American Booksellers Association

Originally published on Thu December 5, 2013 3:18 pm

Back in September, poet and novelist Sherman Alexie wrote an open letter to a group of people whom he called the "gorgeous book nerds" of the world, asking them to become "superheroes" for independent bookstores.

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NPR Story
6:22 am
Sat November 30, 2013

A London Cabbie's Guide To Lit Gifts

Originally published on Sat November 30, 2013 6:31 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. No way around it. It's shopping season and for many people there's nothing like giving a book as a holiday gift. A book is not only a fine companion, it reflect something about both the giver and the receiver. And you don't have to change the batteries.

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Sat November 30, 2013

Emily Dickinson's Envelope Writings: 'Gorgeous' Poetry In 3-D

Originally published on Wed December 4, 2013 8:42 am

Readers always seem to want to get closer to Emily Dickinson, the godmother of American poetry. Paging through her poems feels like burrowing nose-deep in her 19th century backyard — where "the grass divides as with a comb," as she writes in "A narrow Fellow in the Grass."

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Theater
4:41 am
Sat November 30, 2013

Around The U.S., Holiday Theater With Local Flair

Seven In One Blow, which plays at New York City's Axis Theater, is one of many recurring holiday-season productions across the U.S. that bring a distinctly local flavor and history to bear.
Dixie Sheridan

Whatever they are, our holiday traditions tend to be a mixture of the universal and the specific.

If we celebrate Christmas, for instance, we might have stockings and trees just like our neighbors, but we might also be the only ones in town who wear homemade elf hats while we open presents. It's a mix that helps us feel closer to the rest of the culture while reaffirming what's special about our own little community, family and home.

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The Salt
4:40 am
Sat November 30, 2013

These Cookbook Photos Redefine What Fresh Seafood Looks Like

How to make dead fish look attractive? That's the challenge New York-based duo Shimon and Tammar Rothstein faced when they were hired to do the photography for famed French chef Eric Ripert's book On the Line.
Photos by Shimon and Tammar, Courtesy of Shimon and Tammar

Originally published on Sat November 30, 2013 10:05 am

How to make dead fish look attractive? That's the challenge New York-based duo Shimon and Tammar Rothstein faced when they were hired to do the photography for famed French chef Eric Ripert's book On the Line.

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Movies
1:55 pm
Fri November 29, 2013

Finding 'Great Beauty' Amid Rome's Corruptions

In The Great Beauty, director Paolo Sorrentino surveys the city of Rome through the eyes of jaded journalist Jep Gambardella (Toni Servillo), taking in the city's degeneracies alongside its eternal beauties.
Gianni Fiorito Janus Films

Originally published on Fri November 29, 2013 5:49 pm

Rome is often called the Eternal City, and generations of filmmakers from around the world have sought to capture its enduring beauty on screen.

The new film The Great Beauty is the latest, a picture that casts Rome itself in the title role. After playing to critical acclaim in Europe, it opens in American cinemas this month. The film is also Italy's official entry at this season's Academy Awards.

The Great Beauty is a double-edged portrait, out to capture both the beauty and the ugliness of modern Rome.

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Books
1:55 pm
Fri November 29, 2013

A Poet's Advice For Unlikely Partners: Just Dance

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (second from left) shakes hands with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry next to Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (far left) and French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius (far right) after a statement on early November 24, 2013 in Geneva.
Fabrice Coffrini AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri November 29, 2013 5:49 pm

Sometime after 3 a.m. on Sunday, international negotiators emerged from a conference room in a Geneva hotel, bearing with them weary smiles and a historic agreement. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and representatives from five other world powers had come together on a deal to freeze the Iranian nuclear program temporarily.

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TED Radio Hour
8:01 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Can Anyone Learn To Be A Master Memorizer?

Joshua Foer says that one past memory champion developed a technique to remember more than 4,000 binary digits in half an hour.
James Duncan Davidson

Originally published on Mon December 16, 2013 4:39 pm

Part 3 of the TED Radio Hour episode Memory Games.

About Joshua Foer's TEDTalk

Some people can memorize thousands of numbers, the names of dozens of strangers or the precise order of cards in a shuffled deck. Science writer and U.S. Memory Champion Joshua Foer shows how anyone can become a memory virtuoso, including him.

About Joshua Foer

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TED Radio Hour
8:01 am
Fri November 29, 2013

Can Eyewitnesses Create Memories?

Forensic psychologist Scott Fraser says, "all of our memories, put simply, are reconstructed memories."
TEDxUSC

Part 1 of the TED Radio Hour episode Memory Games.

About Scott Fraser's TEDTalk

Forensic psychologist Scott Fraser studies how we remember crimes. He describes a deadly shooting and explains how eyewitnesses can create memories that they haven't seen. Why? Because the brain is always trying to fill in the blanks.

About Scott Fraser

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TED Radio Hour
8:01 am
Fri November 29, 2013

How Do Experiences Become Memories?

Daniel Kahneman says, "we tend to confuse memories with the real experience that gave rise to those memories."
James Duncan Davidson TED / James Duncan Davidson

Originally published on Mon January 27, 2014 3:37 pm

Part 2 of the TED Radio Hour episode Memory Games.

About Daniel Kahneman's TEDTalk

Nobel laureate and founder of behavioral economics Daniel Kahneman goes through a series of examples of things we might remember, from vacations to colonoscopies. He explains how our "experiencing selves" and our "remembering selves" perceive happiness differently.

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Movie Reviews
6:03 am
Fri November 29, 2013

A Korean Cult Thriller Gets A Spike Lee Makeover

After 20 years in captivity, Joe (Josh Brolin) is released into the world with a hammer and an appetite for revenge in Oldboy, a Spike Lee remake of the 2003 South Korean film.
Hilary Bronwyn Gayle FilmDistrict

Originally published on Mon December 2, 2013 9:04 am

Spike Lee's movies typically carry the label "A Spike Lee Joint," but Oldboy doesn't. He calls it "a Spike Lee Film," which my guess is Lee's way of saying he's a gun for hire — and that after a line of box office failures and difficulty getting financing for personal projects, he can make a fast, violent action thriller.

And as it happens, he can — a more-than-decent one. But this is also the first time I've come out of a Spike Lee film, bad or good, and not known why it had to be made. It's brutal, effective and utterly without urgency.

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