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About the Author

Heller McAlpin is a New York-based critic who reviews books for NPR.org, The Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Christian Science Monitor, and other publications.

Akin

FICTION

Akin

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

In Emma Donoghue's latest novel, a man's quest to understand his family history gets tangled up with his family's future....
Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee

TRUE CRIME

Furious Hours: Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

Casey Cep revisits the true crime story that tantalized and eluded Harper Lee -- and finds a window into the life of a writer, and the life of a community grappling with tragedy.
Late in the Day

FICTION

Late in the Day

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

In Tessa Hadley's latest novel, two couples lives are deeply entangled -- all the more so when one of the foursome isn't there.
Little

FICTION

Little

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

The story of the woman who became Madame Tussaud gets a treatment far livelier than waxwork in the novelist Edward Carey's imagination.
The Library Book

BEYOND CATEGORY

The Library Book

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

In the new book from the author of the bestselling "The Orchid Thief," the story of a catastrophic fire opens the door to fascinating journey into the world of libraries.
There There

FICTION

There There

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

In his debut novel, Tommy Orange tells the story of Native Americans searching for a home in a 21st century city.
The Italian Teacher

READING IN COMMON

The Italian Teacher

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

The new novel from the author of "The Imperfectionists" asks the question: should the talented live by different rules?
The Female Persuasion

FICTION

The Female Persuasion

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

The new novel from the author of "The Interestings" traces a young woman's life after it's reshaped by a vital encounter.
Asymmetry

READING IN COMMON

Asymmetry

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

Lisa Halliday's debut novel is a three-part work folded like "literary origami."
Spy of the First Person

READING IN COMMON

Spy of the First Person

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

In this posthumously published work of autobiographical fiction, the playwright presents a soul brought to bay by illness and mortality.
The Wine Lover’s Daughter: A Memoir

MEMOIR

The Wine Lover’s Daughter: A Memoir

Reviewed by Heller McAlpin ×

The writer Ann Fadiman turns a memoir of her troubled relationship with her father into a meditation on memory, art, and the idiosyncrasy of taste. Review by Heller McAlpin.
The Reporter as Teacher: A Talk with John McPhee

INTERVIEW

The Reporter as Teacher: A Talk with John McPhee

A Conversation with Heller McAlpin ×

The legendary journalist and essayist John McPhee has finally published his own meditation on writing. He talks about it with his onetime student, Heller McAlpin.