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'The Age Of Miracles' Considers Earth's Fragility

In Karen Thompson Walker's first book, climate change makes the Earth's rotation grow more and more sluggish, but this melancholy page-turner is more than just a disaster plot.
NPR

Philly Author's 'Confession': I Lived These Stories

Author Solomon Jones says death can seem angelic at first — especially to the lost, addicted kids in his book The Last Confession. He says many of his stories come from his own experiences as a homeless drug addict on the streets of Philadelphia.
NPR

The Complex 'Tapestry' of Michelle Obama's Ancestry

New York Times' reporter Rachel Swarns traces the first lady's family tree in her new book, American Tapestry: The Story of the Black, White and Multiracial ancestors of Michelle Obama.
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'Hitless Wonder': On Tour With A Band Of Also-Rans

Most people have never heard of Watershed, but the Columbus, Ohio, rock band has been doggedly touring and recording for a quarter-century. A new memoir by founding member Joe Oestreich profiles a life on the road, powered more by passion than optimism.
NPR

'Billy Lynn' A Full-Bore Tale Of A Day After Iraq

Author Ben Fountain's debut novel, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, is the story of what happens to a 19-year-old college dropout after he joins Bravo Company in the early years of the Iraq war.
NPR

Gross-Out Gags AND Life Lessons In 'Wimpy Kid'

Author Jeff Kinney is a rock star in the middle school literary scene. His Diary of a Wimpy Kid books follow the misadventures of sad-sack sixth-grader Greg Heffley, who just wants to fit in. Kids love the gross-out humor, but librarians and teachers say the books also help them laugh at the indignities of life.
NPR

R.A. Dickey On 'Winding Up' As A Knuckleballer

New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey is currently the only knuckleball pitcher in the major leagues. His new memoir, Wherever I Wind Up, explains how his life — and career — have mimicked the unpredictable trajectory of the difficult pitch he throws game after game.
NPR

Sleuth Keeps His Good Eye On Mexico City's Crime

Paco Ignacio Taibo II and his fictional protagonist, Hector Belascoaran Shayne, follow crime trails in a dark, violent Mexico City. But the author has not written about his detective since the drug war began about six years ago.

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