Arts/Life

Book Reviews
5:03 am
Mon August 3, 2015

'Spies' Is A Cinematic Account Of Americans In War-Torn Paris

BERLINER VERLAG/ARCHIV DPA /LANDOV

It's the least surprising thing in the world to discover that historian Alex Kershaw's latest book, Avenue of Spies, has already been optioned for development with Sony Pictures TV. Its circumstances — an American family in Paris aiding the French resistance from an apartment only a few doors down from the Paris headquarters of the SS — are too cinematic to ignore. And if that sounds like a coincidence so precarious only fiction can support it ... it sounded that way to the Jacksons, too.

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Author Interviews
4:04 pm
Sun August 2, 2015

'Kids Love To Be Scared': Louis Sachar On Balancing Fun And Fear

Lydia Thompson NPR

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 4:37 pm

Louis Sachar knows a few things about writing for kids. His first book, Sideways Stories From Wayside School, came out in 1978 — and the wacky collection is still in print.

His 1999 Newbery Medal winner, Holes, centers on a boy wrongly confined to a juvenile detention facility. It's mysterious and creepy, and it's still flying off the shelves.

So if he says kids will love a scary eco-bioterror-mystery-thriller-comedy, you just might trust him.

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Politics
3:09 pm
Sun August 2, 2015

Jon Stewart's Private White House Meetings

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 4:37 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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Movie Interviews
3:09 pm
Sun August 2, 2015

'Who Am I Without My Sport?' Greg Louganis On Life After Olympics

The documentary Back On Board follows the career of four-time Olympic champion Greg Louganis.
HBO

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 5:03 pm

Greg Louganis is the best diver of his generation — perhaps the best the world has ever seen. The four-time gold medalist is the only man to ever sweep the diving events in consecutive Olympics.

The new documentary Back on Board, by director Cheryl Furjanic and producer Will Sweeney, contrasts that success with the inner turmoil Louganis experienced rising to stardom at such a young age.

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Performing Arts
5:31 am
Sun August 2, 2015

Caught In The Act: Joke-Stealing In The Age Of Twitter

Conan O'Brien's been sued by a comedy writer who alleges he's been stealing jokes. But journalist Larry Getlen warns not to assume the worst: In the world of topical comedy, similar jokes are bound to arise.
Kevin Winter Getty Images

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 5:03 pm

Conan O'Brien got some bad news this past week: The late-night host is getting sued for allegedly stealing jokes. A freelance comedy writer claims that O'Brien lifted four jokes from the writer's personal blog and Twitter.

The dust-up arose after an odd story surfaced about a flight that had just two passengers on board. Naturally, the two men found some humor in it.

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Music Interviews
5:27 am
Sun August 2, 2015

Colombia's La Momposina Sings A Tangled Social History

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 6:28 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The music of Colombia is in the spotlight this week as we check in with our friends at Alt Latino. Felix Contreras usually joins us with a number of artists to share. Today he has just one artist.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "TAMBOLERO")

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Movie Interviews
5:27 am
Sun August 2, 2015

'Best Of Enemies': When Televised Verbal Fireworks Were A Novelty

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 6:28 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Religion
5:27 am
Sun August 2, 2015

In Utah, 'Book Of Mormon' Strikes A Chord

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 6:28 am

Copyright 2015 KUER-FM. To see more, visit http://www.kuer.org.

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Sun August 2, 2015

This 'Woman With A Secret' Plays Deadly Mind Games

Lydia Thompson NPR

Originally published on Mon August 3, 2015 6:11 am

Crime is bred from secrets.

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Author Interviews
3:42 am
Sun August 2, 2015

Luther Campbell Of 2 Live Crew On Fame, Obscenity And Community

Courtesy of Amistad

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 6:28 am

If anything was going to make the case for putting warning labels on music, it was 2 Live Crew at the turn of the 1990s. The hip-hop group's output was so sexually explicit that it eventually became the subject of an obscenity case that made its way through some of the highest courts in this country. The man at the center of it all was Luther Campbell, a.k.a Luke Skywalker, the alter-ego that helped make 2 Live Crew one of the most legendary and notorious rap acts ever.

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The Salt
3:23 am
Sun August 2, 2015

Counterfeit Duck Confit: All Of The Flavor, Without The Labor

Traditional recipes for duck confit, or confit de canard, can require dozens of steps to prepare. David Lebovitz's fake take cuts the steps down to five.
Ed Anderson Courtesy of Ten Speed Press

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 6:28 am

This summer, NPR is getting crafty in the kitchen. As part of Weekend Edition's Do Try This At Home series, chefs are sharing their cleverest hacks and tips — taking expensive, exhausting or intimidating recipes and tweaking them to work in any home kitchen.

This week: We learn to make a "counterfeit" version of duck confit, a classic French dish that traditionally can take days to prepare.

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Author Interviews
5:21 pm
Sat August 1, 2015

Aviator Beryl Markham Soars Again In 'Paris Wife' Author's New Book

Lydia Thompson NPR

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 4:15 pm

Beryl Markham was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic from East to West. The British-born Kenyan woman was also a racehorse trainer, a writer and a fearless adventurer.

Once famous as an aviation pioneer, she's largely dropped out of the public consciousness. But novelist Paula McLain has put her back in the spotlight — as the protagonist of her new novel, Circling the Sun.

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My Big Break
3:15 pm
Sat August 1, 2015

Reggie Watts, Man Of Many Voices, Improvised His Way To Success

Reggie Watts calls his form of entertainment "disinformationist." He disorients his audience, sometimes talking non-sense and switching seamlessly between accents — all improvised on the spot.
Kyle Christy

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 4:55 pm

As part of a series called My Big Break, All Things Considered is collecting stories of triumph, big and small. These are the moments when everything seems to click, and people leap forward into their careers.

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Book News & Features
3:10 pm
Sat August 1, 2015

76 Years Later, Lost F. Scott Fitzgerald Story Sees The Light Of Day

F. Scott Fitzgerald's story "Temperature" — which was found as an unpublished manuscript — appears in the new issue of The Strand Magazine.
AP

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 4:55 pm

Andrew Gulli has an unusual passion: finding unpublished short stories by famous American authors. He searches through libraries and archives, finds works, researches to confirm they've never been published — then publishes them in the literary magazine he edits, The Strand.

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Books
3:10 pm
Sat August 1, 2015

A Look Back On 'Middle Passage': The Evolution Of A Literary Classic

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 4:55 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARUN RATH, HOST:

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Movie Interviews
3:10 pm
Sat August 1, 2015

More Than A Toy: Lego Enthusiasts Have Built A Community

A LEGO Brickumentary explores the enduring global appeal of the little plastic toys.
Courtesy of RADiUS

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 4:55 pm

It's almost impossible to think of a toy that's more ubiquitous than Lego bricks. The popular interlocking building blocks are everywhere — from the big screen to kids' rooms around the country.

So it may be hard to believe that in 2003, the Lego Group almost went bankrupt.

The company's near fall and meteoric rise is chronicled in the new film A LEGO Brickumentary.

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Performing Arts
7:17 am
Sat August 1, 2015

For Penn & Teller's Magical Partnership, The Trick Is Telling The Truth

Still snapping selfies, 40 years later.
Joan Marcus Courtesy of Courtesy of Boneau/Bryan-Brown

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 2:04 pm

What does a couple do for its 40th anniversary?

If you're Penn and Teller, you play Broadway. Thirty years after they first played New York, the duo are back with a new show. And it's no quiet celebration, either. In the course of a single performance, they make a cellphone ring inside a dead fish, swallow both needles and fire — and make a rare African spotted pygmy elephant disappear.

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Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me!
6:03 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Not My Job: Chance The Rapper Gets Quizzed On Saran The Wrapper

Christopher Polk Getty Images for Anheuser-Busch

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 10:08 am

Chicago hip-hop superstar Chance the Rapper got his name because nobody believed a guy named Chancelor Bennett could rap.

We've invited him to our free show in Millennium Park in Chicago to play a game called "Chance the Rapper, meet Saran the Wrapper." Three questions about using Saran wrap on everything other than leftovers.

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Code Switch
5:48 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Black Lives Matter: Coming To A Museum Near You?

Demonstrators protested the death of Michael Brown on last summer in Ferguson, Mo., even as police sprayed pepper spray, shot smoke, gas and flash grenades.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

As we approach the one-year anniversary of unarmed black youth Michael Brown's death at the hands of Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is set to open next fall in Washington, D.C., has already started collecting banners and posters from the Ferguson protests, as well as gas masks donned by protesters and cell phone videos taken at the various demonstrations.

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Author Interviews
5:44 am
Sat August 1, 2015

A Study Of Gods And Human Nature In 'Tiberius'

Originally published on Sun August 2, 2015 2:04 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

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Book Reviews
5:03 am
Sat August 1, 2015

'Three Moments' Is A Symphony Of Short Story Strangeness

"A dense forest of might'ves." That's how the Willesden Kid, the main character in China Miéville's short story "The Dowager of Bees," describes the weird world he's found himself in: A world much like ours, only ominously askew. The Willesden Kid is a newcomer to an underground circuit of gambling. His sense of reality is already a little off the grid.

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Architecture
3:27 am
Sat August 1, 2015

Blueprints Before High Tide: An Architect Explains The Perfect Sandcastle

This gargantuan beauty was built during the 1999 Delaware State News Sandcastle Contest. The castle was lost all too soon in a tragic high-tide accident.
Grant L. Gursky Associated Press

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 9:31 am

Architect Renzo Piano has designed the 87-floor Shard skyscraper in London, the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris and the new home for the Whitney Museum in New York.

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Television
4:37 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Despite Host Controversy, Amazon Takes A Chance On 'Top Gear'

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 5:53 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

When the BBC canned the host of one of its best rated programs "Top Gear," it was a big deal. Millions of fans tuned in each week to see longtime star Jeremy Clarkson and the flashy stunts of the long-running car show.

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Books
2:28 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Remembering Alan Cheuse, Our Longtime Literary Guide

Alan Cheuse was our guide to the best and worst of the written word for more than 30 years.
Josh Cheuse

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 3:40 pm

A member of the All Things Considered family has died. Alan Cheuse, who reviewed books on our air nearly every week since the early 1980s, passed away today after a car accident in California two weeks ago. He was 75 years old.

In two minutes every week, Alan paid his respects to good writing in his soft, intense, passionate voice.

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The Two-Way
2:18 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Alan Cheuse, Novelist And Longtime NPR Contributor, Dies At 75

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 3:10 pm

Alan Cheuse, the novelist, teacher and longtime literary commentator for NPR, has died at the age of 75. His daughter, Sonya, confirmed that he died Friday of injuries sustained in a car accident in California two weeks ago.

"On behalf of the family, we are in deep grief at the loss of our beloved father, husband and grandfather," Sonya Cheuse told NPR. "He was the brightest light in our family. He will always remain in our hearts. We thank everyone for the outpouring of love and support."

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NPR Ed
1:45 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

The Play's The Thing — High School Productions Down The Decades

LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Sat August 1, 2015 5:54 pm

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The Salt
12:44 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

Cheetos, Canned Foods, Deli Meat: How The U.S. Army Shapes Our Diet

The U.S. military's need for longer-lasting rations led to the invention of many modern processed foods.
Library of Congress

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 11:14 pm

Many of the foods that we chow down on every day were invented not for us, but for soldiers.

Energy bars, canned goods, deli meats — all have military origins. Same goes for ready-to-eat guacamole and goldfish crackers.

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Movie Reviews
12:24 pm
Fri July 31, 2015

'Rogue Nation' Fulfills The Mission Of A Reliable Blockbuster Series

A spry 52 when the film was shot, Tom Cruise — still his own stuntman — careens a motorcycle, sans helmet, around a winding Moroccan highway at suicide-miles-per-hour.
Bo Bridges Paramount Pictures

Originally published on Fri July 31, 2015 11:49 am

The most mercilessly thrilling action sequence of 2015 is still the entirety of Mad Max: Fury Road. But a credible challenger has at last arrived in the perilously punctuated Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation, a super-fun sequel that spends its best 15 minutes at the Vienna State Opera.

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Television
11:59 am
Fri July 31, 2015

Jon Stewart, Faking It and Making It

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVE DAVIES, BYLINE: This is FRESH AIR. I'm Dave Davies. Next week, Jon Stewart ends his 16-year run as host of "The Daily Show" on Comedy Central. A lot of "Daily Show" viewers share the sentiment expressed by President Obama when he made his seventh and final appearance on the show last week.

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Television
11:59 am
Fri July 31, 2015

For Key And Peele, Biracial Roots Bestow Special Comedic 'Power'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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