Feb 18, 2013 — It was one of the most revolutionary tools of biomedical research: the immortal HeLa cell line. But few people know the cells belonged to a poor Southern tobacco farmer named Henrietta Lacks. Rebecca Skloot spent years researching Lacks and tells her story in The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks.
Feb 7, 2013 — "Mister hit Josephine with the palm of his hand across her left cheek and it was then she knew she would run." So begins Tara Conklin's debut novel, The House Girl, which links the stories of an artistically talented 19th-century slave and an ambitious 21st-century lawyer.
Oct 18, 2012 — In Master of the Mountain, historian Henry Wiencek uses an explosive interpretation of evidence to show how, by the 1780s, Founding Father and slave owner Thomas Jefferson had gone from championing equality to rationalizing an abomination.
Aug 10, 2012 — In the latest book in her Mrs. Murphy mystery series, Sneaky Pie For President, author Rita Mae Brown's feline protagonist puts the mysteries aside to make a run for the White House and unify all Americans under an animal-friendly agenda.
Jul 13, 2012 — Rebecca Skloot's study of the life behind the HeLa cell is on the list for a 70th week.
May 15, 2012 — Lawrence Jackson went through most of his life not knowing much about his family history, but when he had a child, he wanted to pass along a family tree. His search took him across Virginia, where he found out more than he ever expected.
May 10, 2012 — Thomas Jefferson's garden was a vast, beautiful science experiment involving over 300 varieties of 90 different plants. And no gardening detail was too small for Jefferson to note in the gardening journal he kept for nearly 60 years.
May 2, 2012 — Jessie Knadler's book, Rurally Screwed, tells a deceptively nuanced story about marriage and change, says commentator Martha Woodroof.
Aug 25, 2011 — Many colleges assign books that all incoming freshmen must read over the summer. A popular 2011 assignment is The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot, about a cell line taken without consent from a black woman with cervical cancer.
Jul 14, 2011 — NPR coverage of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot. News, author interviews, critics' picks and more.