Ian McEwan's other books include <a href="http://www.npr.org/books/titles/138049397/solar">Solar</a>, <em>For You</em> and <a href="http://www.npr.org/books/titles/138308921/on-chesil-beach">On Chesil Beach</a>.
Ian McEwan's Sweet Tooth is that oddest of literary achievements: an ingenious novel that I compulsively read, intellectually admired and increasingly hated. By the time I got to McEwan's last sneer of a plot twist, I felt that reading Sweet Tooth is the closest I ever want to come to the experience of watching a snuff film. Think that's harsh? Open up Sweet Tooth and find out what McEwan thinks of you, Dear Reader, particularly if you're a woman, as most readers of fiction are.
There's been plenty of discussion about head injuries in professional football, new equipment, new lawsuits and new rules as well. Inevitably, the conversation came to include high schools, most prominently when a school board member in - near Philadelphia proposed to end the football program. There's also been, sometimes, angry pushback. Last month, the discussion opened again in Dover, New Hampshire.
A U.S. Marine patrol walks across the charred oil landscape near a burning well near Kuwait City in March 1991. Concerns about oil supply were at play when the U.S. and its allies intervened during the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990. But American policy is changing now that Mideast oil imports to the U.S. are declining.
Credit John Gaps III / AP
The U.S. maintains a strong naval presence in the Persian Gulf in order to safeguard key shipping lanes. Here, aircraft are parked on the flight deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln as a U.S. destroyer patrols the Arabian Sea in the Strait of Hormuz in February.
Within the next two decades, the United States may barely need any oil from the Persian Gulf, due in large part to increased domestic production. That dramatic shift could shake the foundation of U.S. interests in the Middle East.
Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 1:32 pm
From Spain and Portugal to Greece and Italy and on north to Belgium and Germany, strikes and protests spread across Europe today.
While this is the first time that the protests have gone pan-European, the message hasn't changed: Demonstrators were protesting the austerity measures put in place by many European countries to bring an end to the sovereign debt crisis that has dogged the continent.
Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 1:36 pm
A good deal of credit for President Obama's re-election has gone to his campaign's sophistication at interpreting data about potential voters and its use of behavioral research to get supporters to actually vote.
And because success in politics spawns imitators, the approach could well shape how future campaigns are run.
Are better days ahead in Afghanistan? A new survey signals that just more than half of Afghans think their country is headed in the right direction. Here: Mohamed, who makes a living by working as a day laborer in construction, makes his way home after work in Kabul.
Originally published on Wed November 14, 2012 8:36 pm
According to a new survey by the Asia Foundation, 52 percent of the 6,300 Afghans it surveyed in June feel the country is heading in the right direction. It's the first time in eight years of conducting this survey that the foundation found a majority of Afghans held a positive view.