Iraq War, 2003-2011
Dec 13, 2013 — The players that year faced a sobering new reality: The nation was at war, and they'd soon leave the football field behind for the battlefield. In All American, author Steve Eubanks recalls that game through the eyes of two players — Army quarterback Chad Jenkins and Navy linebacker Brian Stann.
Nov 26, 2013 — For critic Maureen Corrigan, this year's hybrid family holiday may be best celebrated by escaping into a book. Her recommendations include a kids' book about Russian Jews who identify with the Pilgrims, and a novel that contemplates class divides during wartime through the lens of a football game.
Nov 11, 2013 — Roy Scranton and Jacob Siegel edited and contributed to the collection of short stories by veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. They tell Fresh Air about how soldiers cope with the fear of death, and why many soldiers feel conflicted about sharing their experience with a larger audience.
Oct 1, 2013 — Journalist David Finkel embedded with the 2-16 Infantry Battalion during the troop surge in Iraq, then recorded their stories in his first book, The Good Soldiers. Now, his new book chronicles the struggles of those who made it home, from their recurring nightmares and suicidal thoughts to the challenges of getting help.
Jun 7, 2013 — Brian Castner commanded two Explosive Ordnance Disposal units in Iraq, where his team disabled roadside IEDs and investigated the aftermath of roadside car bombings. He returned home a completely different man, which he details in his memoir, The Long Walk.
Apr 29, 2013 — In nonfiction, Jonathan Franzen's collection of recent essays and Bob Spitz's Julia Child biography arrive in paperback. In softcover fiction, Herta Muller and Kevin Powers render worlds of excruciating hardship, while Chris Cleave explores a complicated rivalry.
Mar 18, 2013 — On the 10-year anniversary of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, journalist Aaron Glantz talks about the challenges American service members face in accessing disability and other benefits. Glantz says there is a backlog of 900,000 claims and that the average waiting period is 273 days.
Jan 4, 2013 — At No. 9, Kevin Powers' The Yellow Birds details the friendship between two Iraq War vets.
Nov 28, 2012 — Ben Fountain's newest book, Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, takes place over the course of a single day in the life of Spc. William Lynn. Author Jonathan Evison writes that this is a book so vivid he felt like he lived it. Have you ever read a book that felt real? Tell us in the comments.
Nov 14, 2012 — What are the best of the books? NPR Books looks at this year's National Book Award nominees for fiction and nonfiction. These 10 books — which tell the stories of a young drug smuggler, lovable philanderers, holograms in the Saudi desert and more — inspired, informed and entertained readers.