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Rachel Louise Snyder's memoir traces a life shaped by patriarchy and religion
Journalist Rachel Louise Snyder has covered gender-based violence around the world for a number of media outlets and in her widely-acclaimed book, No Visible Bruises. But in her new memoir, Women We Buried, Women We Burned, she examines the role it played in her own life. After the loss of her mother early in life, Snyder was raised in a strict evangelical household, where corporal punishment was the norm. In today's episode, she tells NPR's Scott Simon about how that upbringing eventually pushed her to leave home, and the kindness she discovered waiting for her on the other side.
Two poets pen memoirs about the relationships that shaped their writing
Today's episode features interviews with two poets who revealed different sides of themselves through memoirs. First, Maggie Smith speaks with NPR's Miles Parks about You Could Make This Place Beautiful, and how virality and the dissolution of her marriage impacted her writing. Then, Kwame Alexander discusses Why Fathers Cry at Night with NPR's Michel Martin, which highlights the different kinds of love that have informed his life.
In 'The Kingmaker,' romantic sparks fly at a pipeline protest
Kennedy Ryan's The Kingmaker portrays two seemingly opposite characters – a Yavapai-Apache activist and the heir to an oil fortune – falling in love, and dealing with the complicated fallout of their differences. In today's episode, Ryan speaks with NPR's Chloe Veltman about how she approached writing an indigenous character and community she herself is not a part of, and how powerful storytellers like Shonda Rhimes and Ava DuVernay inspire her own work.
'Undaunted' provides a thorough history of the women who blazed trails in journalism
For decades, male editors told women they couldn't be reporters because of congenital inaccuracies, or because they required having a male escort to report at night. In her new book, Undaunted: How Women Changed American Journalism, Brooke Kroeger provides a historical record of reporters like Ida B. Wells, Nellie Bly, and Gloria Steinem, who went ahead and did it anyway. Kroeger spoke with NPR's Scott Simon about how these journalists changed the industry forever, and how their legacy lives on through coverage of #MeToo and modern-day issues about gender.
In 'The Guest,' a sex worker wreaks havoc on the glitzy social scene at the Hamptons
Alex is 22 years old and staying with a much older, wealthy man in the Hamptons. She's the protagonist of Emma Cline's new novel, an outsider looking in at the perfectly pruned life people of a certain social status lead in these towns. In today's episode, Cline speaks with NPR's Mary Louise Kelly about how her heroine navigates the unfamiliar world she finds herself in, and how power is so unequally wielded in those spaces.
In need of a good read? Or just want to keep up with the books everyone's talking about? NPR's Book of the Day gives you today's very best writing in a snackable, skimmable, pocket-sized podcast. Whether you're looking to engage with the big questions of our times – or temporarily escape from them – we've got an author who will speak to you, all genres, mood and writing styles included. Catch today's great books in 15 minutes or less.