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NPR

Romance Novels Sweep Readers Off Their Feet With Predictability

At $1.4 billion, romance is by far the biggest sector of the publishing industry. Harper's editor Jesse Barron looked into the business of romance and its peculiarities for this month's issue. He says the key is copying the elements that made other authors successful — down to the cover model's pose.
NPR

With Fearlessness And A 'Code Name,' Iraqi Helped Navy SEALs

Interpreter "Johnny Walker" accompanied the U.S. military on countless missions in his war-torn home country of Iraq. His memoir, Code Name: Johnny Walker, details his experiences with the SEALs and his family's long path to U.S. citizenship.
NPR

Seed Librarians, Stone Carvers And Sheepherders Along The Hudson

British graphic designer Nick Hudson bicycled 500 miles along the Hudson River valley, striking up conversations with local artists and craftspeople as he went. Those stories — from maple syrup producers, sculptors, boat restorers and more — have been collected in a new book, Conversations on the Hudson.
NPR

A Vietnamese Pioneer, Modeled On An American Legend

Pioneer Girl is the story of a young woman whose brother has disappeared. NPR's Rachel Martin speaks with author Bich Minh Nguyen about the novel, and its connection to the writer Laura Ingalls Wilder.
NPR

Why Confounding Coincidences Happen Every Day

David Hand, an emeritus professor of mathematics at Imperial College in London, believes that miracles and rare events actually aren't so uncommon. Hand speaks with NPR's Rachel Martin about his new book, The Improbability Principle.
NPR

In 'Poetry,' The Story Of An African-American Military Family

Many of Marilyn Nelson's most famous poetry collections are for children. Her latest work, How I Discovered Poetry, is a memoir about her own childhood, which was spent traveling around the country in the 1950s as the daughter of an Air Force pilot.
NPR

Lessons On Addiction And Escaping The 'Death Grip From Satan'

In order to understand and to mourn the death of Philip Seymour Hoffman, Slate senior editor Emily Bazelon recommends reading The Night of the Gun by David Carr.
NPR

Memento Of A Lost Childhood: Anne Frank's Marbles

Before her family went into hiding, Anne Frank gave away some of her toys to her neighbor, Toosje Kupers. The gift included a set of marbles, now on display at at an art gallery in Rotterdam. NPR's Scott Simon takes a moment to note the childhood gift.
NPR

In The Wake Of Tragedy, The Possibility of Understanding

Emily Bazelon recommends a memoir about facing the danger and squalor of addiction and eventually overcoming it, while Abigail Deutsche ponders the love story at the heart of Edward St. Aubyn's novel Bad News: The one between a man and his drugs.
NPR

Love, Faith And Football In An 'Uncommon Marriage'

Tony Dungy was the first African-American head coach to win a Super Bowl. But he places football after matters of faith and family. Dungy and his wife Lauren tell host Michel Martin about their new book, Uncommon Marriage: Learning About Lasting Love and Overcoming Life's Obstacles Together.

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