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'Reaped' Is A Reminder That No One Is Promised Tomorrow

In Men We Reaped, Jesmyn Ward recalls the deaths of five young men in her life, which she believes were all connected to being poor and black in the rural South. "It made me feel that I wasn't promised some long life. ... That's not a given for me."

Stephen King On Getting Scared: 'Nothing Like Your First Time'

Was King's 1977 The Shining your first fictional scare? Now, after nearly 40 years, King has followed up his horror tale of a little boy and a haunted hotel with a sequel called Doctor Sleep. "I wanted to revisit Danny and see what he was like as a grown-up," King says.

Political Violence, Uneasy Silence Echo In Lahiri's 'Lowland'

India's politics and history play a central role in Jhumpa Lahiri's The Lowland. In the Booker Prize-nominated novel, an Indian radical is killed, and his wife and brother start over in America. Lahiri tells NPR's Lynn Neary that the story is inspired by true events, but very unlike her own life.

'Hollywood Said No,' But 'Mr. Show' Fans Said Yes!

Bob Odenkirk and David Cross created and starred in the short-lived sketch comedy program Mr. Show. Fifteen years after their show went off the air, they have a new book of old scripts that were rejected by Hollywood.

NFL Veteran Recounts The Bruises And Breaks Of Life In The League.

Former NFL receiver Nate Jackson's new memoir, Slow Getting Up, is a raw account of his six years on the field. Jackson spent most of that time with the Denver Broncos, and while he wasn't a star, he got just as banged up as the big-name players — and learned to play through the pain.

Abused By Both Polanski And Media, 'The Girl' Moves On

Samantha Geimer was victimized twice: once by an infamous Hollywood director who fled prosecution after raping her when she was 13, and again by a relentless media, which has hounded her for the past three decades.

A Road Trip Sparks An Unlikely Friendship In 'Norvelt To Nowhere'

Young Jack hits the road with his cranky, elderly teacher Miss Volker (and a couple of cranky, elderly cars) in From Norvelt to Nowhere, the new young adult novel from Jack Gantos. The sequel to 2011's Newbery-winning Dead End in Norvelt is set in 1962, in the shadow of the Cuban missile crisis.
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Dara Horn: "A Guide For The Perplexed"

A brilliant software developer, Josie, creates a program to record and archive everything we do and say. A 19th-century scholar discovers a treasure trove of ancient documents in a Cairo "genizah," or synagogue's repository for holy items that cannot be discarded. The narratives in Dara Horn's new novel intersect when Josie is kidnapped in Egypt, raising questions about what it means to remember the past.


Years After Historic Ruling, Execution Still A 'Random' Justice

Evan Mandery's A Wild Justice is an account of the legal battles that led to the U.S. Supreme Court striking down capital punishment, then reversing course four years later. He says that today, prisoners who are sentenced to death have a 10 percent chance of actually being executed.

Bio Credits Manson's Terrible Rise To Right Place And Time

California parolee Charles Manson arrived in San Francisco in 1967, when the city was full of young waifs looking for a guru. In Manson, Jeff Guinn argues that if the cult leader had instead been paroled in a place like Nebraska, he likely would not have been so successful.