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Colson Whitehead's 'Underground Railroad' Is A Literal Train To Freedom

As a child, Whitehead was surprised to learn that escaped slaves did not ride an actual subway. His new novel follows Cora, a young slave who has escaped a Georgia plantation and is heading north.

NPR

Novel Explores The Fierce And Frenzied World Of Competitive Gymnastics

Megan Abbott's new book takes readers deep into the intense, vacuum-sealed universe of young female gymnasts and their parents. Critic Maureen Corrigan says You Will Know Me is worthy of a gold medal.
NPR

40 Years On, A Controversial Film On Islam's Origins Is Now A Classic

The Message, released in 1976 and starring Anthony Quinn, was made with difficulty and condemned by hardliners. One of the challenges: its main character, the Prophet Muhammad, could not be pictured.
NPR

'Imperial Wife' Trains Its Spotlight On Powerful Women, Past And Present

Irina Reyn's new novel focuses on two women in difficult marriages. Though they're centuries apart, both relationships are tied to the strong woman's struggle to fulfill gender expectations.
NPR

'Engine Block Burritos' — And Other Road Trip Tips From Touring Musicians

Intake manifold stew and "carbecue." These are a few of the ideas traveling musicians have come up with to keep them going on tour. Now, they're offering advice for a summer trip on a budget.
NPR

Words Of Wisdom From Young Adult Authors: Jason Reynolds

Jason Reynolds writes "slice-of-life stories" for youngsters. For our "Next Chapter" series, he talks about packing up his belongings in trash bags and moving to New York City to become a writer.
NPR

'Doc McStuffins': The Olivia Pope For Kids?

If you have young children at home, chances are you know Doc McStuffins. If you don't, comedian W. Kamau Bell will tell you why you should love the 6-year-old cartoon girl with a stethoscope.
NPR

How The VCR Began America's Love Of On-Demand Content

As the last VCR factory in Japan closes down production, we take a look at the rise and fall of the videocassette recorder and the culture it created.
NPR

Not My Job: Keegan-Michael Key Of 'Key & Peele' Gets Quizzed On Peels

The actor and comedian performed with the improv troupe Second City before he gained fame on MAD TV and partnered with Jordan Peele for Key & Peele. He's now starring in the film Don't Think Twice.
NPR

New Novel Takes 'The Underground Railroad' Beyond The Metaphor

NPR's Scott Simon speaks with Colson Whitehead about his new book, The Underground Railroad, in which slaves ride a a real railroad through time to see racism in different eras.

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