Books

4:42am

Thu January 24, 2013
Author Interviews

'Insurgents' Hoped To Change Military From Within

Originally published on Thu January 24, 2013 11:30 am

Barbara Sax AFP/Getty Images

National security reporter Fred Kaplan was the first to publicly link Paula Broadwell to Gen. David Petraeus in last fall's affair scandal, but that's not the topic of his new book. In fact, it's barely an addendum. Instead, Kaplan focuses in depth on counterinsurgency — a cornerstone of Petraeus' legacy.

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1:39am

Tue January 22, 2013
Tina Brown's Must-Reads

Tina Brown's Must-Reads: Hidden Lives

Originally published on Tue January 22, 2013 8:06 am

Longtime CIA agent and counterintelligence agent Jeanne Vertefeuille, pictured at center, was instrumental in uncovering undercover agents, or moles, within the organization in the 1980s and '90s.
Central Intelligence Agency

Tina Brown, editor-in-chief of Newsweek and The Daily Beast, occasionally joins Morning Edition to talk about what she's been reading for a feature we call "Word of Mouth." This month, she recommends a trio of stories on people who've led hidden and often extraordinary lives — a businesswoman and technological giant who started life in Chinese re-education camps, a billionaire investor and education reformer whose personal experiences are too big for a series of ghostwriters, and a CIA agent whose job was to find a story among piles of forgotten documents.

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3:29pm

Sun January 20, 2013
Author Interviews

George Saunders On Absurdism And Ventriloquism In 'Tenth Of December'

iStockphoto.com

George Saunders has been writing short stories for decades.

Saunders, a professor at Syracuse University, was once a geological engineer who traveled the world; he now crafts stories that combine the absurd and fantastic with the mundane realities of everyday life. One story about a professional caveman inspired those Geico commercials.

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2:12pm

Sun January 20, 2013
Author Interviews

Connecting With Nature To Reclaim Our Natural 'Birthright'

Originally published on Sun January 20, 2013 3:29 pm

Stephen Kellert is a professor emeritus and senior research scholar at Yale University.
John Mueller Yale University Press

"Contact with nature is not some magical elixir but the natural world is the substrate on which we must build our existence," writes Stephen Kellert in his new book Birthright: People and Nature in the Modern World.

In it, he tells stories of the environment's effect on us, and ours on it. His writing builds on the traditions of Thoreau, John Muir and Rachel Carson. Modern society, he argues, has become adversarial in its relationship to nature, having greatly undervalued the natural world beyond its narrow utility.

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6:05am

Sun January 20, 2013
Author Interviews

Relationships And Rocket Ships In 'Last Girlfriend'

Reagan Arthur Books

Everyone has relationship problems, even God — at least, according to humorist Simon Rich. His latest book of short stories, The Last Girlfriend on Earth: And Other Love Stories, is quirky, surreal and sometimes a little dark. It's divided into three sections: Boy Meets Girl. Boy Gets Girl. Boy Loses Girl.

"It is a pretty honest and personal book," Rich tells NPR's Rachel Martin, "which is a strange thing to say about a book that's filled with so much time travel, and rocket ships, and talking trolls and magical goats, but it is actually a pretty honest book."

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