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Updated: 1 hour 35 min ago

On The Road

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 10:33pm

Who needs a map when you can put your geography skills to the test with some terrestrial-themed trivia? Then sing along with Jonathan Coulton as he takes a turn with a John Mayer classic.

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Stuck in the Backseat

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 10:33pm

Are we there yet? Wrap up with a set of games that'll get you through those final hours of a cross-country drive. Plus, indie band Lake Street Dive reveals how they pass the time on the tour bus.

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Dining Like Darwin: When Scientists Swallow Their Subjects

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 11:44am

Some scientists carry on the tradition of eating the animals or plants they study: leeches, tadpoles, 30,000-year-old bison. Darwin did it first, but why do it at all? Call it all-consuming curiosity.

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Gertrude Bell Was 'A Woman' Worth Knowing

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 9:03am

Explorer and activist Bell is best remembered today for helping create the modern state of Iraq. A smartly-edited new collection of her writings presents a fascinating (if not always smooth) portrait.

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Unfolding The History Of Napkin Art

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 6:03am

The simple napkin has a surprisingly complex history. The masterful table centerpieces of the Renaissance were rich in status and meaning.

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Pizza As Autobiography In 'Slice Harvester'

Wed, 08/12/2015 - 6:03am

Colin Atrophy Hagendorf decided to review a plain slice of pizza from every joint in Manhattan — a project that evolved into a two-fisted memoir of his own life and struggles with substance abuse.

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Pop Culture Happy Hour Small Batch: Fantastic Four

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 1:07pm

Glen Weldon and Chris Klimek discuss the latest attempt to turn the Marvel Comics super-team into a blockbuster film franchise.

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Confronting Mortality In An Unsettling, Inspiring 'Tour Of Bones'

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 12:37pm

Before her death in 2014, author Denise Inge took a spiritual journey to bone houses throughout Europe. Critic Maureen Corrigan says the resulting book, The Tour of Bones, is "strange and chaotic."

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Music Journalist Chronicles The 'Wild Obsessive Hunt' For Rare 78 RPM Records

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 11:42am

In Do Not Sell At Any Price, Amanda Petrusich details the extreme measures collectors take in pursuit of rare 78s. "You can still find quite a few of them around at junk shops," she says.

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Donald Trump's Policy Positions Lack Specifics ... So Far

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 10:52am

The billionaire businessman and GOP presidential frontrunner wants to "Make America Great Again!" But much of how he plans to do that is still a mystery.

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Dense, Fantastical 'Prodigies' Rewards The Patient Reader

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 9:03am

Angélica Gorodischer's episodic, lyrical new novel follows (in a meandering sort of way) the magically-tinged lives of a motley cast of boarders in a house that once belonged to a famous German poet.

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'The Water Knife' Previews A Future Drought Scenario

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 8:06am

A new novel, The Water Knife, doesn't take the easy way out but, instead, asks questions about the mutations of human institutions under the pressure of global warming, says commentator Adam Frank.

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'Hominids' Is A Deeply Human Collection Of Speculative Fiction

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 6:03am

Nalo Hopkinson's new collection mixes up her Afro-Caribbean influences with classic literature and historical fantasy. Critic Jason Heller says her stories dazzle with a hard-won sense of hope.

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The Kindness Of Strangers Connects A Poet To Her Own Grief

Tue, 08/11/2015 - 3:55am

Poet Elizabeth Alexander's new book is a memoir of her life with her husband, who died three years ago. During her book tour, readers began giving her keepsakes that helped her work through her grief.

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