Critics' Lists: Summer 2012
Aug 15, 2012 — These panels are filled more with extraordinary storytelling than with standard-issue superheroes. Each book is created by a singular writer/artist, and offers a wholly unique point of view in both narrative and illustration.
Jul 31, 2012 — This summer, don't be a tourist — take a journey with these travel memoirs instead. Open these five books and meet a future First Lady, a one-booted hiker on the Pacific Crest Trail and a young Angela Davis. You'll encounter beauty, bravery, and chilling strangeness — without ever leaving the couch.
Jul 17, 2012 — Who says humor books can't be serious? Critic Heller McAlpin recommends some light but not weightless reads on mostly modern dilemmas: the pitfalls of class snobbery, what to do with those expensive higher degrees, the challenges of long marriages, and why otherwise rational women wear high heels.
Jul 10, 2012 — Where do ideas come from and how can we have more of them? Science writer Jonah Lehrer recommends five books that explore the mysteries of the creative mind, and document the strange and beautiful world that our ideas have helped create.
Jun 26, 2012 — Love knows no bounds, and in these five books, passion leaps from the page. You'll be swept off your feet by three novels and two memoirs that take up the mischievous matters of the heart.
Jun 23, 2012 — These five books will give you literary jet lag — a yearning to linger in the world of the author's imagination, and a reluctance to return to your own. The research is so deep it becomes invisible, and these writers are trusted guides, gently nudging and leading you through each tale.
Jun 19, 2012 — These five books will suck you into strange worlds, but leave you full of questions about our own. These page turners have pleasingly complicated political and social subtexts, morphing space battles into philosophical debates and zombie hordes into political satire.
Jun 17, 2012 — Lynn Neary talks to three critics about books you shouldn't miss. One critic says it's a particularly rich literary summer because in election years, publishers release the juiciest books before fall.
Jun 11, 2012 — Summer is a trying time for introverts, what with the barbecues and the graduations and the picnics by the pool. If you'd always choose a good book over a good party, critic Maureen Corrigan has a list for you.
May 21, 2012 — For Nancy Pearl, beach reading doesn't mean light reading. NPR's go-to librarian has dug up a diverse mix of titles old and new — a selection of mystery, memoir and more.