Dec 25, 2012 — Few people today remember E.T.A. Hoffmann, but most everyone is familiar with his most famous creation: The Nutcracker. NPR's Robert Siegel traces the history of everyone's favorite Christmas ballet all the way back to its much darker original version.
Dec 8, 2011 — Since starting NPR's Backseat Book Club, Michele Norris has been swimming in "kid lit." The five stories on her year-end list will seep into your heart and leave you thinking about the characters long after you've turned the final pages.
Sep 26, 2011 — Illustrator and author Kadir Nelson tells the African-American story — from Colonial times through the civil rights movement — in his new children's book, Heart and Soul.
Sep 7, 2011 — Children who are bullied often carry those memories with them for years. In the anthology Dear Bully, young adult fiction writers reflect on the experience of being bullied.
May 30, 2011 — Some of the best summers are those filled with journeys, reunions and good food — three themes that factor prominently in the books recommended by our independent booksellers.
May 18, 2011 — Jeannette Rankin, the first female member of Congress, was elected to Congress even before all women in the country had the right to vote. She only served two terms — which were decades apart. But it was during those short spans that she was able to take a historic stand.
Mar 12, 2011 — In her illustrated book for middle-grade readers, How They Croaked, Georgia Bragg chronicles the disgusting and bloody deaths of 19 famous figures, from Beethoven (who exploded with pus) to George Washington, who bled to death.
Jan 21, 2011 — A new children's book written and illustrated by a Brown University math professor makes complex ideas like prime and composite numbers easy (and fun) to understand.
Nov 28, 2010 — A snow leopard named Leo was just 7 weeks old when he was orphaned in the Himalayas. His journey is chronicled by writer Craig Hatkoff and his daughter, Isabella. The story is the latest in a series that uses animal-rescue stories to tackle difficult subjects.
Aug 14, 2010 — It's not often that a book can cover World War I in less than 200 pages, but critic Jonathan Hunt says Russell Freedman has succeeded admirably. Amid the epic sweep of world events, Freedman never loses sight of the smaller moments of human drama.