Books | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

Books

RSS Feed
NPR

Unraveling The Genetic Code That Makes Us Human

In The Violinist's Thumb, writer Sam Kean goes inside our genetic code, looking at the stories written by the fundamental building blocks within us. The book explains things like why some people can't handle drinking coffee and why some human babies are born with tails.
NPR

Jo Nesbo's Fiction Explores Oslo's Jagged Edges

The Norwegian author does his best to show NPR's Eric Westervelt that Oslo really does have a seedy side. In his fiction, at least, Nesbo's city is full of shady characters who draw the attention of the reckless, alcoholic detective Harry Hole.
NPR

'Savages' Return In 'The Kings Of Cool'

In 2010, writer Don Winslow hit it big with his crime novel, Savages. Although he'd already written 12 novels, Savages was the book that really launched his career. It made it to the top of The New York Times best-sellers list. His new book, The Kings of Cool, is a prequel to Savages.
NPR

An 'Unlikely Pilgrimage' Toward Happiness

Harold Fry is retired and sedentary — and in no way the sort of person who'd spontaneously decide to walk the length of England to visit a dying friend. Rachel Joyce's new novel, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, follows Fry as he does just that — and finds emotional awakening along the way.
NPR

New Edition Includes 39 Different Farewells To 'Arms'

Ernest Hemingway famously told The Paris Review that he'd rewritten the ending to A Farewell to Arms 39 times before he was satisfied. Those endings — and more — are being published in a new addition to the classic novel. But the writer's grandson, Sean, says Hemingway always knew the book would end sadly.
NPR

From Juvie To J.D.: The Story Of A 'Runaway Girl'

When Carissa Phelps was 12 years old, she was kidnapped by a pimp and forced into prostitution. Still, she was able to put her life back on track to graduate from high school, then college, then law school.
NPR

Immigration, The Gold Mountain And A Wedding Photo

A new National Archives exhibit charts the stories of 19th and early 20th century immigrants to America through documents and photographs attached to their case files. For one historian, one of these "attachments" turned out to be "like a breakthrough discovery of a lifetime."
NPR

'Our Kind': Unpacking Misconceptions About AIDS

A new book about global attitudes to the AIDS epidemic in Africa says lays some of the blame at writer Joseph Conrad's door. Conrad's Heart of Darkness, says author Uzodinma Iweala, connected inferiority and disease with Africans in way which is still evident today. Host Scott Simon talks the author about Our Kind of People.
WAMU 88.5

Grillmaster Steven Raichlen

When it comes to barbecue, Steven Raichlen literally "wrote the Bible." Get secrets on grilling everything from scrumptious ribs to tasty angel food cake....

Pages