Programmer Andy Weir had always longed to read science fiction with a greater focus on science. So, he wrote a novel of his own — which has since become a best-seller and, now, a blockbuster film.
Those snippets of praise on book covers have been around for over 150 years (at least). But how do they get there — and why? The answers are more complicated, and compelling, than you might think.
Yeonmi Park escaped from North Korea at age 13 only to find that freedom was more elusive than she'd imagined. NPR's Rachel Martin talks with Park about her new book, In Order to Live.
Seth Dickinson's fantasy debut lays out pages of loans, taxes and commodity trading for his imagined empires — which turns out to be a riveting backdrop for a brutal tale of loyalty and rebellion.
David J. Peterson has crafted languages for TV shows and films — even a whole language for a single giant, in Game of Thrones. For him, every language is a balance of the technical and the artistic.
In Children of Monsters, Jay Nordlinger looks at the lives of, among others, Romano Mussolini, Saif Al-Islam Gadhafi and one man who claimed to be Hitler's son.
Author Sherry Turkle is concerned that we are outsourcing too many of our conversations to screens and robots. "Face to face conversation is the most human and humanizing thing that we do," she says.
Philip Pullman's beloved fantasy series traces the adventures of brave young Lyra Belacqua (and her daemon, Pantalaimon), through an alternate universe that occasionally spills over into our own.
In ancient Greece, philosophers denied that women were capable of friendship. Marilyn Yalom and Theresa Donovan Brown trace the way those perceptions changed over the years in this engaging history.
Fox News host Bill O'Reilly and writer Martin Dugard reconstruct the final days of a president's life in Killing Lincoln, which appears at No. 14.
At No. 11, David Baldacci's Memory Man follows a detective as he struggles with memories of finding his family brutally murdered.
Debuting at No. 6, Lauren Groff's Fates and Furies uses a split narrative to tell the story of a long marriage.
The lists are compiled from weekly surveys of close to 500 independent bookstores nationwide.
Author Mary Karr outlines her writing process in The Art of Memoir, which debuts at No. 6.
What does diacetyl look like? And what's it doing in our food? A new book seeks to demystify 75 common food additives with striking photos of these ingredients and details on their uses and history.
If you didn't grow up in the punk subcultures of the 1980s and '90s, you might have a little trouble with David Baillie's new novel — but stick with it; the book reveals a vicious grace and honesty.
From stealth technology to GPS to vaccines, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency — or DARPA — has developed some of the most consequential weapons and technology through the ages. Annie Jacobsen, author of the new book "The Pentagon's Brain," talks with Steve Inskeep about the agency's storied past and its intriguing future.
In Greg Hrbek's new novel, a family is faced with an unsettling possibility: Their memories don't match up, and their collective past includes a sister and daughter not all of them remember.
The typical American family tosses out some $1,500 of food yearly. From smarter fridge packing to sauteing soggy lettuce, a new book is full of tips to rescue edibles from landing in the trash.
This autobiographical novel about a South Korean girl who moves from the rural countryside to the city in search of work and education blurs line between fiction and reality.