NPR stories about Book Reviews
June 20, 2013 The author was handpicked by Margaret Thatcher to write her authorized biography. Though he clearly admires Thatcher, reviewer Annalisa Quinn says that the book is no hagiography — it is staggeringly thorough, and the storytelling is vivid and interesting.
June 20, 2013 More adult fairy tale than conventional novel, In the House Upon the Dirt Between the Lake and the Woods follows an unnamed husband and wife who leave their home to start a new life in the wilderness. Reviewer Michael Schaub says this debut from author Matt Bell is a joy to read.
June 19, 2013 Maggie O'Farrell's new novel, Instructions for a Heatwave, follows a troubled Irish Catholic family in London over the course of four scorching July days in 1976. Reviewer Heller McAlpin says Heatwave is a beautiful book about "the importance of forgiving those you love."
June 18, 2013 It's finally summer and for many kids that means swimming, video games and vacations. But a lot of parents hope their kids will to do some extra reading during the break. Host Michel Martin is joined by three moms in the literary world with summer book suggestions
June 18, 2013 When's the last time you read a comic book? Here are five for summer, covering everything from tiny Finnish critters to Viennese punk rockers and musings on Anna Wintour. Writer Myla Goldberg says they represent a golden age in comic art.
June 17, 2013 If any story screams out for a multimedia e-book treatment, it's the tale of The Rock Bottom Remainders, a small band of best-selling authors — including Amy Tan, Dave Barry and Stephen King — who yowled out rock standards. Hard Listening is a digital scrapbook about their years as musicians.
June 17, 2013 Neil Gaiman's latest, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, is the story of an artist who returns to his childhood home and recalls a magical struggle he was involved in as a young boy. Reviewer Annalee Newitz says the book balances "frenetic action with wistful self-knowledge."
June 14, 2013 Looking for a good summer sci-fi or fantasy read? Annalee Newitz of io9 picks her five favorites, from the tale of a time-traveling serial killer, to a cryogenics company that produces "bridesicles," and a compilation of supposedly lost Wikipedia entries.
June 18, 2013 Lauren Beukes' new thriller The Shining Girls traces a time-traveling serial killer as he jumps through the decades, pursued by the only one of his victims to survive. Critic Alan Cheuse calls the book "a frightening journey in time and punishment."
June 12, 2013 Backwoods preachers spout Bible verses while spreading mayhem and revolution in Kent Wascom's The Blood of Heaven. The novel is set in the early 1800s, when western Florida was a battleground where Americans fought Spanish and French imperialists for control.
June 11, 2013 Canadian writer Annabel Lyon has a special gift when it comes to time travel. Her new novel The Sweet Girl carries us back to ancient Greece, where a teenage girl learns from her philosopher father and fights for her safety in a dangerous world. Reviewer Alan Cheuse says the novel is a triumph.
June 11, 2013 NPR Books is replete with readers of grown-up books, but editor Petra Mayer prefers a good YA novel any day. She picks five (well, really six) of her favorite summer YA reads, from first love in 1980s Omaha to far-future Brazil and beyond.