Arts

4:29pm

Tue August 4, 2015
Book News & Features

These Books Amp Up The Adrenaline In Summer Reading

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 8:02 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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4:29pm

Tue August 4, 2015
Book News & Features

At Some Stores, Readers Can Go Get A Refund For 'Watchman'

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 8:02 pm

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

We offer a lot of reading suggestions here at NPR, and we hope we get it right. But what happens when you buy a book and it's nothing like what you thought it would be?

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4:29pm

Tue August 4, 2015
Author Interviews

The Bonds Of Friendship Stay Strong In 'Stranger'

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 8:02 pm

Author Rebecca Stead collects ideas before she sits down to write, even from the smallest encounters — like this one:

"The idea came from a girl — she was wearing cat ears, and I said 'nice ears,'" she tells NPR's Melissa Block. "And she said, 'Thanks! I've been wearing them for a year! I don't know why!' And then she ran away."

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4:15pm

Tue August 4, 2015
The Two-Way

Metropolitan Opera To Drop Use Of Blackface-Style Makeup In 'Otello'

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 6:08 pm

Tenor Placido Domingo performs the title role in a 1994 performance of Verdi's Otello at the Metropolitan Opera in New York.
Johan Elbers The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images

The Metropolitan Opera is poised to make a big change.

When the fall production of Verdi's Otello opens next month, its lead character will not be wearing the traditional blackface-style makeup.

The Met tells NPR by email that its upcoming production of Otello will be the first without dark makeup since the company first produced the opera in 1891.

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3:43pm

Tue August 4, 2015
The Salt

How Percy Shelley Stirred His Politics Into His Teacup

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 9:27 pm

Joseph Severn's portrait of Percy Bysshe Shelley. The radical 19th century poet practiced the politics of the plate. For Shelley and other liberals of his day, keeping sugar out of tea was a political statement against slavery.
Joseph Severn Wikimedia

Born 223 years ago on Aug. 4, the great Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley is celebrated for such works as his sublime odes to the skylark and West Wind. But he was also a radical thinker — and his revolutionary politics stormed in his teacup.

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3:06pm

Tue August 4, 2015
Book Reviews

'Dragonfish' Offers A Noir Vision Of An 'American Dream Gone Rancid'

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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DAVE DAVIES, HOST:

A just-published literary noir called "Dragonfish" puts a new spin on the old formula. Our book critic Maureen Corrigan has fallen hard for this tale of gamblers, dark alleys and dangerous dames. Here's her review.

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2:24pm

Tue August 4, 2015
Monkey See

A Pig, A Frog And Two Producers: 'The Muppets' Talk About Returning To Prime Time

Kermit the Frog and Gonzo return to television in ABC's The Muppets.
Eric McCandless ABC

Most of the panel discussions that happen at the Television Critics Association press tour currently underway in Beverly Hills have something critical in common: the panelists are humans. (Please hold your jokes about Hollywood. The critics in attendance have made them all.)

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10:03am

Tue August 4, 2015
Book Reviews

'Fifth Season' Embraces The Scale And Complexity Of Fantasy

Courtesy of Orbit Books

There are two ways to look at the kind of fantasy novels that come with big glossaries at the end. Negatively, they're self-indulgent exercises in building fictional worlds, with the author fixating on the sheer quantity of settings and characters to the exclusion of all else. Positively, fantasy-novel glossaries help the reader keep track of an intricate clockwork of imaginary peoples, places, and things — and that intricacy actually pays off.

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7:03am

Tue August 4, 2015
Book Reviews

Complex, Generational Music In Lyrical 'Daughters'

Originally published on Tue August 4, 2015 3:52 pm

From childhood, The Daughters' Lulu has been a creature of music, able to discern the notes of her surroundings on whim and command: The B-minor of a knife striking a glass, the pitch of different car horns, the musical composition of a waiter's dropped tray. As an adult, she is an opera singer in high demand, a soprano of rare talent who "[prefers] to sing the songs of witches."

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5:01pm

Mon August 3, 2015
Fine Art

Opulent And Apolitical: The Art Of The Met's Islamic Galleries

Originally published on Mon August 10, 2015 4:44 pm

Sultan 'Ali 'Adil Shah II Slays a Tiger (ca. 1660) is part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's critically acclaimed Sultans of Deccan India, 1500-1700 Opulence and Fantasy exhibition.
The Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. Lent by Howard Hodgkin. Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art

This is an introduction to NPR's Muslim Artists, Now series, which will highlight contemporary Muslim musicians, writers, painters and filmmakers, among others.

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