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NPR

Close Out The Year With Some Best-Selling Last Words

As the year comes to an end, NPR librarian Kee Malesky shares closing lines from some great novels — those last few moments spent with a story that you love.
NPR

Courage And Curiosity: The Best Heroines Of 2012

This year's literary heroines aren't defined by their desire to love or be loved — or even to be especially lovable. Writer and critic Parul Sehgal celebrates five sublimely stubborn women, frequently at odds with themselves and always at odds with their times.
NPR

Short Stories To Savor On A Winter Weekend

Author Hortense Calisher once called the short story "an apocalypse in a teacup." Critic Jane Ciabattari presents her favorite mini-apocalypses of 2012, from veteran authors like Sherman Alexie to newcomer Claire Vaye Watkins, who combines a unique voice and a shadowed family history in her debut collection.
NPR

'Fifty Shades' Is The One That Got Away. At Least From Me

Sometimes "the one that got away" is a book that actually was easy to overlook. And sometimes it's something you ignore until you just can't anymore. NPR's Lynn Neary finally comes to terms with the publishing sensation that is Fifty Shades of Grey.
NPR

True Originals: Biographies That Defy Expectations

Our list of this year's best biographies focuses on books about individuals who lived their lives off the beaten path. From the story of a spy turned chef to the story of the real Count of Monte Cristo, these books chronicle subjects who refused to conform to the expectations of others.
NPR

The Renaissance Man Who Got It All Wrong

In A Man of Misconceptions: The Life of an Eccentric in an Age of Change, John Glassie writes of 17th-century Jesuit priest and scientist Athanasius Kircher, a renaissance man who studied magnetism, Mount Vesuvius, even the blood of plague victims. The only problem? His theories were often wrong.

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