A young nobleman leaves home and ends up joining a group of outlaws — sound familiar? No, it's not Robin Hood, it's the iconic Korean hero Hong Gildong, and it's time the rest of the world met him.
"I see the world and then I describe it," says Sara Baume. Her debut novel, Spill Simmer Falter Wither, is a "very atypical love story" between a troubled man and his adopted one-eyed dog.
Kanan Makiya's new novel is named for the rope used to execute Saddam Hussein. It follows one Shiite militiaman from the day of Saddam's fall through the tumultuous years that follow.
Veteran foreign correspondent Anne Garrels takes us deep inside Russia, where citizens struggle with a shaky economy and widespread corruption, but seem supportive of their controversial president.
Julia Ward Howe wrote the Civil War psalm The Battle Hymn of the Republic. She was adrift in a lonely war of her own, against a husband who controlled every aspect of her life, including what she ate.
Sofia Samatar returns to the world of her award-winning debut, A Stranger in Olondria, with a companion tale of four women caught up in war and turmoil, trying to preserve and pass on their stories.
Roberto Bolaño's posthumous novel 2666 weighs in at more than 900 pages — a challenging read, to say the least. Now Chicago's Goodman Theatre has adapted it as a 5 1/2 hour stage production.
You forget someone's name, or why you ran downstairs. Your brain is getting older, and the connections are weakening. But research shows the middle-aged brain is actually operating at its peak.
Dana Spiotta's new novel centers on a friendship between two female filmmakers. Critic Maureen Corrigan calls it an uncanny work, whose characters and ideas linger "long after the story is over."
Elizabeth Poliner's book takes a familiar dramatic trope — the death of a child — and makes it the linchpin for an intricate tale that follows a close-knit family at a cultural turning point.
Hong Gildong is to Koreans — both North and South — as Superman is to Americans. NPR's Ari Shapiro talks to Minsoo Kang, the translator for the new English version of the classic Korean tale.
Oncologist Theodora Ross discusses the hereditary nature of cancer and her own predisposition to breast and ovarian cancer, which led her to have a double mastectomy and to have her ovaries removed.
Sybil Morial's memoir details her formative experiences living under Jim Crow laws.
Rachel Martin speaks with Chris Bachelder. His novel tells the story of a group of friends who gather each year to re-enact the gruesome injury sustain by quarterback Joe Theisman.
Ken Liu's new The Paper Menagerie, collects fifteen of his Hugo and Nebula Award-winning stories. Critic Amal El-Mohtar calls it "stupendously good work" that strikes chords profound enough to hurt.
NPR's Melissa Block asks Annie Dillard about the celebrated author's "masculine mind," her decision to write less, and her baseball skills. Dillard's new collection of essays is called The Abundance.
The author's latest book, At the Edge of the Orchard, follows a pioneer family growing apple trees in Ohio. Chevalier says she got the idea after hearing the real story of Johnny Appleseed.
Pat Barker's latest novel completes the trilogy she began with Life Class. Her first foray into the World War II era is rich with evocative language, though it occasionally verges on soap opera.
Sunny Balzano was the genial and eccentric proprietor of a beloved bar in Red Hook, Brooklyn. He died Thursday at 81, just weeks after the publication of a new book about his life and times.
From Pythagoras to Balzac, Darwin to Marie Curie, many a genius was inspired by certain edibles, repulsed by others — or had some very peculiar dining habits.