An active conversation — and a hefty dose of outrage — is swirling on social media about the proper boundaries between public and private when it comes to illness and death. Lisa Adams, a stage 4 cancer patient, has been tweeting her experiences with the disease. Writers Bill and Emma Keller have derided her tweets as akin to "deathbed selfies." Melissa Block talks with Meaghan O'Rourke about how we treat dying in the digital age.
In softcover nonfiction, Vali Nasr analyzes foreign policy, Kathryn Miles details the fate of a ship fleeing famine and Kurt Vonnegut's letters reveal a man both hilarious and haunted. In fiction, Rachel Kushner plunges into the world of Italian radicals, Jamie Quatro crafts surreal tales and Alejandro Zambra weaves a Chilean meta-narrative.
Pizza printed up for dinner? Or how about an edible photograph for your next birthday cake? The first restaurant-grade approved 3-D printer was unveiled last week, and the gadget can churn out candies in any shape imaginable. Other printers in the works make custom-shaped pastas and assemble ravioli and gnocchi.
Every day this week, illustrator Maria Fabrizio will be creating an illustration inspired by a story she hears on Morning Edition. Today, she chose Ari Shapiro's story from London, about how Brits are having a tough time saying farewell to their beloved red phone booths.
Rachel Urquhart's debut novel, The Visionist, is based in real life: the Visionists were young Shaker girls who began to suffer mysterious fits one day in August 1837. Reviewer Jane Ciabattari says The Visionist is a "surprisingly dark tale," but lyrically written, and offering a fresh look at Shaker life.
Lee is acclaimed for his realistic and historical fiction, but he's made a foray into the futuristic sci-fi genre with a new novel called On Such a Full Sea. Fresh Air book critic Maureen Corrigan says sometimes it's better for writers to stick closer to familiar shores.
Organizers of the Winter Games are preparing to serve up quite a bit of the hearty deep-red Russian staple soup. Which is kind of ironic, says Russian food writer Anya von Bremzen, since borscht carries with it complicated political implications. And not all borschts are created equal, Bremzen warns.
In Detroit, a group of local and national foundations has pledged more than $330 million to keep the city from auctioning off assets from the Detroit Institute of Art. The purpose of the deal is twofold: to preserve the collection and to raise money for the city's underfunded pension plans.
A study released Monday suggests that the MTV show 16 and Pregnant has contributed to a decline in the nation's teen birth rate. The researchers looked at teen births, Nielsen ratings, Google searches and Tweets, and attributes one-third of the decline to the TV show.