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 15, 2013 — Al Roker won fame as the ever-smiling weatherman on NBC's Today show. But he also endured years of indignities because of his weight. That was until he had bariatric surgery, and lost more than 100 pounds. During this encore presentation, Roker talks with host Michel Martin about his experiences, and his latest book, Never Goin' Back.
Jan 28, 2013 — Roker won fame as the ever-smiling weatherman on NBC's Today show. But he also endured years of indignities because of his weight. Then, in 2001, he had bariatric surgery and lost more than 100 pounds. Roker speaks with NPR's Michel Martin about his experiences and his latest book, Never Goin' Back.
Dec 3, 2012 — This year's treasures include a heart-racing memoir, a fun first novel, a fascinating study of fraternal bonds, plus Toni Morrison's Home and Christopher Hitchens' last work. Critic Heller McAlpin has sifted through piles of new publications and panned for literary gold.
Nov 19, 2012 — Novelist Richard Mason explores belle epoque pleasures, biographer Jean Baker champions sex educator Margaret Sanger, journalist A.J. Jacobs gets healthy, comedian Bill Cosby outsmarts his grandkids, and writer Geoff Dyer takes on filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky.
Nov 13, 2012 — The world's first essayist, Michel Montaigne, was out riding one day when he got slammed from the rear, was thrown from his horse, crashed to the ground and for a brief time was, as he puts it, "dead." He described exactly what it felt like. Here's what he learned.
Oct 22, 2012 — Novelist Jodi Picoult explores life and death, while oncologist David Agus models new health practices, virologist Nathan Wolfe tracks emerging diseases, Dava Sobel reflects on Copernicus, and Charles Shields looks at novelist Kurt Vonnegut.
Sep 12, 2012 — While undergoing treatment for esophageal cancer, Christopher Hitchens chronicled his experience of "living dyingly" in a series of essays for Vanity Fair. Those essays and other notes from the author's final days are compiled in the posthumous book Mortality, with an afterword by his wife, Carol Blue.
Sep 6, 2012 — Every Love Story Is a Ghost Story, a biography of writer David Foster Wallace, debuts at No. 10.
Sep 5, 2012 — Iconoclastic journalist Christopher Hitchens, who died from esophageal cancer in December 2011, chronicled his battle with the disease — his 18 months "of living dyingly" — in Mortality. Critic Heller McAlpin says the tragically posthumous work is full of his pugnacious, ever-bright prose.