"No man can be called friendless when he has God and the companionship of good books."
—Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-61) British poet
- The Simpsons' Secret? It's Written by Math Geeks Fri, 06 Dec 2013 12:00:00 -0500
- For 25 seasons, The Simpsons writers have been smuggling math onto Americans' TV screens. Author Simon Singh helps Ira decode the show's numberplay, while former Simpsons writer David X. Cohen remembers how he helped Homer solve Fermat's Last Theorem (sort of).
- A Holiday Photo Book That Puts Families In An 'Awkward' Position Wed, 04 Dec 2013 03:22:00 -0500
- Matching long johns. Kick lines in skis. Peeing on Santa's lap. Every family has these cringe-worthy moments, immortalized on film, that embody the particularly joyous brand of awkward that the holidays bring. And thanks to Mike Bender, co-author of Awkward Family Holiday Photos, the rest of us can rubberneck.
- Underground Cities And 'Ghost' Miners: What Some People Do For Gold Tue, 03 Dec 2013 13:24:00 -0500
- South Africa's Mponeng gold mine is a 2.5-mile-deep network of chutes and tunnels that employs about 4,000 miners. Of course, that number doesn't include the miners who wander its tunnels clandestinely, stealing and refining ore. In a new book, journalist Matthew Hart investigates why gold and crime sometimes go hand in hand.
- Ted Williams: A Perfectionist Ballplayer With Many Demons Tue, 03 Dec 2013 13:11:00 -0500
- The hitter had a swing so pure and flawless that Mickey Mantle would watch him take batting practice. But he was also a tormented soul who hurt a lot of people, including himself. Ben Bradlee Jr. delivers a deeply personal account of Williams' life in The Kid.
- Upset Over Divisive Political Culture? Blame Burke And Paine Tue, 03 Dec 2013 04:00:00 -0500
- Morning Edition's Steve Inskeep talks to writer Yuval Levin about the origins of the American political right and left. In his new book The Great Debate, Levin traces the birth of the left/right divide to the views of two men: Edmund Burke and Thomas Paine.
- Nightclub King Jon Taffer Sets A High Bar Sun, 01 Dec 2013 17:34:00 -0500
- Jon Taffer is a bar and nightclub consultant and the host of the reality show Bar Rescue. His new book is called Raise the Bar, and he says bars and pubs are part of America's fiber.
- 'Gold' Ponders The Glittering Metal's Allure Sat, 30 Nov 2013 08:00:00 -0500
- Matthew Hart tells the story of humankind's obsession with gold around the world and through history in his new book, Gold: The Race for the World's Most Seductive Metal. He joins host Scott Simon to explain why he writes that "gold is its own country."
- Sherman Alexie Wants You To Be A 'Superhero' For Indie Bookstores Sat, 30 Nov 2013 07:22:00 -0500
- Small Business Saturday is this weekend, but for author Sherman Alexie, it's also Small Bookstore Saturday. He's encouraging authors across the country to visit their local independent bookstores and put in a shift behind the counter, selling their favorite titles.
- Donald Fagen On World Cafe Fri, 29 Nov 2013 14:00:00 -0500
- The founding member of Steely Dan speaks with World Cafe host David Dye about his new memoir, Eminent Hipsters.
- A Year Inside The New York Jets Wed, 27 Nov 2013 12:20:00 -0500
- As many Americans settle in for a day of Thanksgiving football, how much do fans really know about the game and the players? Writer Nicholas Dawidoff spent nearly a year embedded with the New York Jets. He talks about the experience, and his new book, Collision Low Crossers: A Year Inside the Turbulent World of NFL Football, with host Michel Martin.
- How Hannukah Got Americanized Wed, 27 Nov 2013 11:28:00 -0500
- Contrary to what some Americans believe, Hanukkah traditionally isn't one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar. Host Michel Martin speaks with Dianne Ashton, author of the book Hanukkah in America, about how and why the holiday has gained more importance in this country over the decades.
- At The BBC, The Beatles Shocked An Institution Wed, 27 Nov 2013 12:19:00 -0500
- Between 1962 and 1965, The Beatles were featured on 53 BBC radio programs. For The Beatles: The BBC Archives, executive producer Kevin Howlett had to search for many of these recordings, and they weren't easy to find.
- Roosevelt's Polio Wasn't A Secret: He Used It To His 'Advantage' Mon, 25 Nov 2013 14:13:00 -0500
- In The Man He Became, historian James Tobin says, despite misimpressions to the contrary, Americans of Franklin Roosevelt's day were well-aware of his disability — it was an important part of the personal narrative that helped him win the presidency.
- Daniel Menaker's 'Mistake' Formed His Life View Sun, 24 Nov 2013 08:00:00 -0500
- Daniel Menaker rose through the ranks at The New Yorker to become the fiction editor, and later became editor in chief at Random House. He joins host Rachel Martin to talk about his new memior, My Mistake, which describes a childhood incident that resulted in the death of his brother.
- Thanksgiving Dinner Deja Vu? Try French Food This Year Sun, 24 Nov 2013 05:48:00 -0500
- After years of cooking and eating the same pumpkin pies, stuffing and green bean casseroles, you might be in a Thanksgiving slump. Veteran restaurant critic Patricia Wells has a few recipes — including a spicy pumpkin soup and "intense" chocolate custards — to put a French twist on the holiday.