April 18, 2013 Meg Wolitzer's The Interestings follows six talented friends for four decades. It debuts at No. 7.
April 18, 2013 The Lee bothers, Matt and Ted, have written two cookbooks about Southern cuisine, but now they've turned their attention to a more specific region: Charleston, the city they grew up in. Their new book contains recipes and stories from a seafood-centric community with a rich culinary history.
April 18, 2013 Also: an animated interview with David Foster Wallace; the self-publishing trend; and a spirited defense of Justin Bieber.
April 18, 2013 NPR comics critic Glen Weldon has a new, comprehensive biography of the classic American hero: Superman. Reviewer Elizabeth Graham says Weldon's survey of the Man of Steel's many lives in Superman: The Unauthorized Biography is "reliable, witty and informative."
April 17, 2013 Fred Hiatt's new young-adult novel, Nine Days, is based on the real-life story of a Chinese dissident's daughter trying to solve the mystery of her father's disappearance. Ti-Anna Wang, the real-life woman who inspired the tale, says her father had been kidnapped by Chinese agents during a trip to Vietnam.
April 17, 2013 Caitlin Freeman is an artist who uses sweet confections as her primary medium. Her desserts are clever culinary homages to the great works of art that hang at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Her new book details how to re-create some of her edible art at home.
April 17, 2013 David Sedaris' latest essay collection, Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls, mixes his trademark quirky observations with less successful fictional asides in which he takes on the voices of assorted ultraconservative bad guys.
April 17, 2013 Also: Shakespeare's favorite month; Edith Wharton's birthplace is now a Starbucks; book cover designers on jacket art.
April 17, 2013 In honor of National Poetry Month, we've reached into our archives and pulled up 10 interviews with Poets Laureate. Hear current laureate Natasha Trethewey on Hurricane Katrina, Ted Kooser on his Valentine's Day poems, Robert Pinsky on the news, and more.
April 16, 2013 Adam Johnson took the fiction prize for The Orphan Master's Son, his sharp take on life in the authoritarian regime under Kim Jong Il.
April 16, 2013 In The Child Catchers, Kathryn Joyce explores the outsized influence of evangelical Christian groups on the overseas adoption industry. The adoption movement has orchestrated a boom-and-bust market that can exploit poor families in countries where regulations are weak and "orphans" may not actually be orphans.
April 16, 2013 Also, Captain Underpants is under attack; Granta's new "Best Of Young British Novelists"; the Women's Prize for Fiction shortlist announced.
April 16, 2013 Believing evidence of life on Mars, a scientist sells a scheme to signal the red planet via a giant, burning triangle — each side 306 miles — dug in the Egyptian desert. Ken Kalfus' compact (at 207 pages) and deeply satisfying novel Equilateral sends up the arrogance and casual racism of the Victorian mindset.
April 16, 2013 In his new book, The Dispensable Nation, former State Department adviser Vali Nasr explores the state of U.S. foreign policy in Afghanistan and beyond. Nasr says the U.S. "is happy ... to play a less important role, to no longer be the stabilizer."