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July 29, 2014 | NPR · House and Senate negotiators reached a compromise, $17 billion agreement to improve medical care for veterans. The deal comes in the final week before Congress leaves town for a monthlong recess.
 
July 29, 2014 | NPR · Washington Post reporter Liz Sly tells Renee Montagne that U.S. arms may be flowing to moderate Syrian rebels, but the aid seems to be too little too late to affect the course of the civil war.
 
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July 28, 2014 | NPR · The militant group threatens to kill parents who immunize their children. As a result, polio has come roaring back in Pakistan. Eradication now hinges on whether the country can control the virus.
 

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July 28, 2014 | NPR · A new salvo has been fired in the fight over teacher tenure. A group led by former TV anchor Campbell Brown filed a complaint in New York state court, arguing that tenure laws are preventing the state from providing every child with the "sound, basic education" its constitution guarantees.
 
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July 28, 2014 | NPR · Why are so many low-income and minority kids getting second-class educations in the U.S.? That question is at the center of the heated debate about tenure protections and who gets them.
 
July 28, 2014 | NPR · Only one movie in July, Transformers: Age of Extinction, has broken the 100 million mark during its opening weekend. Box office receipts all summer have proven anemic. Paul Dergarabedian, a senior media analyst with RENTRAK, talks to Audie Cornish about the box office slump.
 

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July 26, 2014 | NPR · Hezbollah has been a longtime ally of Hamas, but during this most recent conflict between Israel and Gaza they've taken a sideline role. NPR's Scott Simon talks to the BBC's Kim Ghattas in Beirut.
 

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July 27, 2014 | NPR · Fighting in Ukraine near the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 has international investigators staying away. NPR's Arun Rath talks with OSCE's Michael Bociurkiw about the investigation.
 

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Death

Nov 18, 2013 — Publishers have flooded the market with books — both new and reprinted — about JFK this fall. Some hazard conspiracy theories or point out the failings of the Warren Commission. Others avoid the subject of the assassination, focusing on JFK's character and legacy. And one includes all 486 frames of the famous Zapruder film, published in their entirety for the first time.
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Sep 26, 2013 — In his new memoir, Julian Barnes contemplates 19th century photography, the metaphorical exhilaration of ballooning and the sudden death of his beloved wife. Reviewer Heller McAlpin says the book is beautifully written, if a little disjointed.
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Sep 6, 2013 — Daniel Woodrell's new novel explores the lingering consequences of an explosion in an Ozarks dance hall that kills 42 people. It wasn't an accident, but the book isn't about a hunt for the murderer. Instead, reviewer Ellah Allfrey says, it's a remarkable study of a surviving sister's life and grief.
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Sep 5, 2013 — For nearly a century, Daniel Woodrell's hometown of West Plains, Mo., has been haunted by a dance-hall explosion that killed dozens of the town's young people in 1928. Woodrell explores the disaster — and his Ozarks roots — in his new novel The Maid's Version.
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Aug 5, 2013 — Earlier this summer, NPR's Backseat Book Club — our book club for young readers — asked you to weigh in on your favorite books for kids age 9-14. We heard from more than 2,000 of you, and our expert panel has whittled your hundreds and hundreds of nominations down to a list of 100 great reads.
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Aug 2, 2013 — At No. 4, J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy tracks the rapid deterioration of an idyllic community.
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Jul 15, 2013 — In softcover nonfiction, Chuck Thompson makes the case for Southern secession, and Adam Winkler explores the history of the American gun control battle. In fiction, Rowling tries her hand at a novel for grown-ups.
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Jun 7, 2013 — With the help of her son Lawrence Blume, Judy Blume has adapted her 1981 novel into a film. The widely beloved coming-of-age author speaks with NPR's Audie Cornish about turning the book into a movie, and how the themes in Tiger Eyes echo her own life.
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Dec 3, 2012 — This year's treasures include a heart-racing memoir, a fun first novel, a fascinating study of fraternal bonds, plus Toni Morrison's Home and Christopher Hitchens' last work. Critic Heller McAlpin has sifted through piles of new publications and panned for literary gold.
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Sep 21, 2012 — In her book This Republic of Suffering: Death and the American Civil War, historian Drew Gilpin Faust writes that Civil War deaths — both their number and their manner — transformed America. She is featured in PBS's American Experience called Death and the Civil War, which premiered Sept. 18.
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