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 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 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 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 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 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 4, 2013 The young heroine of Rachel Kushner's new book The Flamethrowers negotiates art and revolution from the back of a motorcycle — both the late-1970s art scene in Manhattan and the Italian radical left of the same era. Reviewer Maud Newton says The Flamethrowers has "timeless urgency."
April 3, 2013 James Salter is a master prose stylist whose deceptively simple sentences reveal the sensations and truth of experience. In All That Is, he conjures the life and times of Philip Bowman, who, returning to New York after World War II, pursues love and a publishing career, with unequal success.
April 2, 2013 Patricia Volk's new memoir, Shocked, chronicles her complex relationship with her beautiful, exacting mother. She finds a useful contrast to her mother's stifled life in a memoir by avant-garde designer Elsa Schiaparelli. Reviewer Heller McAlpin calls the book a "stylish coming-of-age tale."
April 3, 2013 Elizabeth Strout is best known for her short story collection Olive Kitteridge, which won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2009. Her new book is a novel, and critic Maureen Corrigan says it's a different type of winner.