NPR stories about Book Reviews
October 8, 2012 A book without suffering or struggle can only be described as one thing: boring. For Three Books, author Will Wiles writes about his favorite literary misadventures. Do you have a favorite book about everything going wrong? Tell us in the comments.
October 9, 2012 Graphic novelist Chris Ware's latest, Building Stories, is a collection in many formats, following the (mostly) sad and lonely lives of the inhabitants of a Chicago brownstone. But reviewer Glen Weldon says the work is colorful, intricate and ultimately beautiful.
October 9, 2012 When Rebecca Harrington ran out of Jane Austen novels, she was devastated — until she discovered Austen's Juvenilia, a treasure trove of unfinished novels, stories and letters. Do you like reading unpublished work by your favorite author? Tell us in the comments.
October 10, 2012 Donna Cooner's new young adult novel, Skinny, follows Ever, an obese teenage girl who decides to have weight loss surgery. Reviewer Jennifer Longmire-Wright says Skinny is the start of an important conversation for overweight teens — but doesn't adequately portray the difficulties of surgery.
October 11, 2012 Michael Klarman, a Harvard law professor and former clerk for Ruth Bader Ginsburg, traces the judicial history of gay marriage in America from WWII to the present. According to Klarman, the "handwriting on the wall" indicates the imminent legalization of same-sex marriage.
October 11, 2012 In A.M. Homes' suburbia, yawning sinkholes will suddenly open up in front lawns, swallowing cliched plotlines and opening portals to other dimensions. In her latest novel, she serves up an old-fashioned American story that's more Norman Bates than Norman Rockwell.
October 15, 2012 After the first manuscript of Thomas Carlyle's French Revolution was accidentally burned, he began again with renewed fervor. Historian H.W. Brands explains why Carlyle's book remains fresh as ever. Have you ever lost your magnum opus to fire or flash drive? Tell us in the comments.
October 16, 2012 Louise Erdrich's latest novel examines the way violence can give rise to violence, as a young Native American man pursues justice for his mother, who has been sexually assaulted. Reviewer Alan Cheuse says the book is one of Erdrich's best — keenly crafted and containing some wonderful set pieces.
October 17, 2012 Husband and wife cartoonists Robert and Aline Crumb have worked jointly on autobiographical comics for nearly four decades. The panels of their new graphic novel overflow with voluminous speech bubbles filled with the Crumbs' honest observations about anything and everything.
October 17, 2012 Argentine author César Aira's newest novel, The Miracle Cures of Dr. Aira, is the story of a doctor's quest for miracle cures for imagined illnesses — and to defeat his wicked archnemesis, the sinister Dr. Actyn. Reviewer Pablo Medina says it's worth a read.
October 18, 2012 Film critic and historian David Thomson's new collection of essays covers a wide array of films, from Casablanca all the way to Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel. Thomson digs through cinematic history to unearth truths about how what we watch reflects who we are.