Rose Friedman

Rose Friedman is an Associate Editor for NPR's Arts, Books & Culture desk. She edits radio pieces on a range of subjects, including books, pop culture, fine arts, theater, obituaries and the occasional Harry Potter-check-in. She is also co-creator of NPR's annual Book Concierge and the podcast recommendation site Earbud.fm. In addition, Rose has edited commentaries for the network, as well as regular features like This Week's Must Read on All Things Considered.

Rose was an intern at Minnesota Public Radio before coming to NPR in 2010. Prior to her life in public radio she worked at a cheese shop in St. Paul, Minnesota and studied labor history at Macalester College. Outside of NPR her hobbies include cooking and eating.

A few weeks ago, standing outside his New York City apartment building, Bill Buford handed me a bag. Inside was what looked like a deflated, veiny football, wrapped loosely in plastic. It was the dried-out bladder of a pig.

Buford was a little sketchy about the specifics, like who he got it from. "I think it arrived in a DHL parcel labeled 'Documents,'" he told me. I tried not to laugh as he evaded the details and then disappeared upstairs for more ingredients.

The iconic score to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: This is the sound of the American West, at least filtered through the ears of an Italian — specifically, composer Ennio Morricone. He was a giant in the world of film scores who wrote the music for more than 500 movies.

It's powwow season — the time of year when across the country, Native American tribes should be getting together to celebrate their culture with food, dancing, singing and drumming. Kay Oxendine is a member of the Haliwa Saponi Tribe in North Carolina.

"Every year we know it's coming; like, the birds sing differently," she told NPR. "It's almost like spring arrives when the powwow does."

If the name of this year's U.S. Poet Laureate sounds familiar, that could be because Joy Harjo was also last year's pick for the job. In a statement announcing the reappointment, Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden called Harjo "an inspiring and engaging poet laureate," who would "help the Library showcase Native poets from coast-to-coast."

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said that for the first time since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis the number of people in intensive care units has gone down.

The difference was small. Speaking to reporters Friday, Cuomo said that across the state there were 17 fewer ICU patients than the day before. But he said he's cautiously optimistic that the infection rate is slowing, and urged people to continue staying at home.

Another 777 people died, bringing the total so far to 7,844.

In separate press conferences, both the governor of New York and the mayor of New York City said social distancing as well as the restrictions on nonessential businesses are working to flatten the curve of the coronavirus.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, speaking in Albany, pointed to lowering rates in the state of hospitalizations, intubations and people admitted to ICUs, telling reporters, "Our efforts are working. They're working better than anyone projected they would work. That's because people are complying with them."

Publishing house Macmillan is backing off a controversial policy restricting e-book sales to libraries, announcing in a letter to librarians, authors, illustrators and agents on Tuesday that "There are times in life when differences should be put aside."

In November, NPR's Lynn Neary reported on the restrictive policy:

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Before we get to this next story, we should let you know that we will be talking about sexual assault, and it might be disturbing to some of you. We are talking about Harvey Weinstein's trial, which continues in Manhattan this week.

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Editor's note: This report includes descriptions of sexual assault.

Once one of Hollywood's most powerful men, whose very reputation could help determine the fate of the films he financed, Harvey Weinstein is set for a starring role on a very different kind of stage: The former megaproducer's criminal trial opens Monday in Manhattan, where Weinstein faces sexual assault charges that may land him in prison for a very long time.

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How does impeachment work exactly? If only there were some sort of handbook ...

Turns out, there is.

Impeachment: A Handbook began as an essay of about 60 pages, written by Charles L. Black Jr. in 1974. President Richard Nixon's impeachment was heating up, and Black was a law professor (first at Columbia, then at Yale), who saw the need for a clear piece on the subject.

For anyone involved in writing or publishing books, the New York Times bestseller list is the holy grail.

"I still remember the very first time that I got on the list," says Dominique Raccah. She's the founder of Sourcebooks, a publishing house based just outside Chicago. "For an indie press in the middle of the Midwest, yeah, it was absolutely the most extraordinary moment in my life."

Archie Williams likes his odds. He's made it through two rounds in the legendary Amateur Night competition at New York's Apollo Theater, where he'll perform Wednesday evening. "I'mma win," he says, chuckling. "That's how I feel."

Willams, 58, says it's always been his dream to sing on that vaunted stage. But his backstory is different from the average contestant's: His Apollo debut comes after 36 years in prison for a 1982 crime he didn't commit.

The author of an anonymous op-ed in that ran in The New York Times on September 5, 2018, and created a stir both inside the White House and beyond, has expanded the article into a book that will be published next month. It will be called A Warning, and published by Twelve Books, an imprint of Grand Central Publishing/Hachette Book Group, which announced the publication on Tuesday.

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Pulitzer Prize-winning author Herman Wouk has died. Wouk was famous for his sprawling World War II novels, including The Winds of War and War and Remembrance, and for his portrayal of Jewish Americans in the novel Marjorie Morningstar. He died in his sleep Friday at his home in Palm Springs, Calif., at age 103.

The Book Concierge is back! Explore more than 300 standout titles picked by NPR staff and critics.

Open the app now!

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Two hugely popular live entertainment companies are joining forces. Cirque du Soleil announced yesterday it is acquiring Blue Man Productions. NPR's Rose Friedman reports.

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