April 9, 2013 Six teens at a summer arts camp dub themselves, only somewhat ironically, "the Interestings" in Meg Wolitzer's novel of the same name. As the book follows the friends into love, marriage and adulthood, some realize their artistic ambitions while others adjust to less interesting lives.
April 11, 2013 In her new memoir, Shocked, Volk examines the two women who had a lasting impact on her as she began to parse who she was as a woman: her beautiful, critical mother, Audrey Morgen Volk; and the famous — and unconventional — haute couture designer Elsa Schiaparelli.
April 10, 2013 Fiona Maazel's new novel, Woke Up Lonely, is a deliriously inventive tale of love and spycraft. Utopian cult leader Thurlow pines for his ex-wife Esme. She uses her CIA connections to keep him safe under her surveillance in a story layered with espionage, sex and jokes about Kim Jong Il.
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 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 23, 2013 A grad student with a temp job surveying bird populations finds his way to adulthood in a series of linked stories. Filled with quirky characters and offbeat humor, Brian Kimberling's Snapper is a love letter to the wilds of Indiana.
April 24, 2013 At 19, the heroine of Isabel Allende's florid, frenzied Maya's Notebook is in a tailspin of drugs, prostitution and crime. Sent by her grandmother to hide out with an old friend on an island off Chile, she finds love and redemption. Reviewer Mary Pols doesn't buy it.
April 25, 2013 Claire Messud's new novel, The Woman Upstairs, delves into the inner life of the quiet, friendly — and secretly furious — woman upstairs, a frustrated artist named Nora who becomes obsessed with a glamorous immigrant family.
April 30, 2013 How do creative geniuses do what they do? Daily Rituals, which assembles the working regimens of 161 artists and thinkers into a lean, engaging volume, makes one thing clear: There's no such thing as the way to create good work, but all the greats have their way — and some are spectacularly weird.
May 1, 2013 Irish novelist Edna O'Brien looks back on eight tumultuous decades in a new memoir, Country Girl. Reviewer Heller McAlpin says the book is "a generous gift to readers" but too circumspect about O'Brien's personal life — which included encounters with Samuel Beckett, Richard Burton and Paul McCartney.