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Books

When Mary Pope Osborne wrote the first set of stories in the Magic Tree House series in 1992, she had a contract for four books, and she figured that would be it. But then she began getting letters from teachers, parents and kids.

"Those letters are priceless," she says. "I've memorized so many of them, like: 'Dear Mrs. Osborne, Your books almost made me smart!' or 'Dear Mrs. Osborne, I'm working on my own novel. ... It's not finished yet, it's scary, it's called The Septic System.'"

White House (Pete Souza) / via Wikimedia Commons

The nearly decade-long tenure of Chief Justice John G. Roberts has seen some momentous decisions. Recent cases include the overruling of DOMA, Citizen's United and the legality of the Affordable Care Act mandate. 

The 17th head of the U.S. Supreme Court has left an indelible mark in history. Though the decisions have varied at times, privacy, corporate personhood, free speech and money in politics all have been affected, sometimes drastically, by this judge.

It's a writer's fantasy. You author a book. It hits the young adult jackpot. It sells 10 million copies. Hollywood actors fight for parts in the movie.

Welcome to John Green's reality. Not too long ago, in New York City, he introduced a screening of the film based on his novel, The Fault in Our Stars, to an audience of hundreds of teenagers ecstatically screaming his name. They cried copiously throughout the film, which follows a romance between two teenagers with cancer.

The era of win-win negotiation have been popular since the 80s, but how to get more from a negotiation is always at the forefront of the mind from the board room; from asking your boss for a raise, to making public policy. 

We all want to "win" but how do we do it while maintaining trust and keeping relationships open. The science of influence and the power of negotiation are the topic of this segment and the new book "Good For You, Great For Me" (Public Affairs) by Lawrence Susskind.

Marsha Miller / University of Texas

The government should be looking past race for its affirmative action goals, argues Sheryll Cashin in her new book, "Place Not Race: A New Vision of Opportunity in America." 

While Cashin argues racism is a real problem in America, being too focused on race blinds university administrators as well as government officials to the fact that the goal of affirmative action should be to even the playing field for the disadvantaged.

wikicommons

Doctors are facing a marketplace that demands they think about many things before the patient. That's according to a new book by Dr. Jack Cochran, executive director of the Permanente Federation and author Charles Kenney called "The Doctor Crisis: How Physicians Can and Must Lead the Way to Better Health Care."

Cochran argues it has never been less fulfilling emotionally and professionally than today to be a doctor. This assumes a doctor was inspired to join the field to help people and not just to make money. 

Nick Bygon http://bit.ly/RbwyXp / CC

Aging activist and oft-candidate for president of the United States Ralph Nader is still doing what he does best: causing trouble. The octogenarian has been making new waves by calling for President Obama to be impeached and for people to support Rand Paul in the 2016 election.

John Wayne was born in the tiny farm community of Winterset, Iowa, as Marion Morrison. Little did the sleepy town know that his star would shine for 50 years and nearly 200 films.

A new biography of the actor, "John Wayne: The Life and Legend," takes us inside his life, his work, and his controversial causes.

Guest:

Fronteras: The number of U.S. Border Patrol agents has been growing rapidly — and not just along the southern border with Mexico. We speak to Todd Miller author of the new book, “Border Patrol Nation,” about the agency's expanding reach and the implications for privacy rights, civil liberties and more. On a lighter note, taking pictures in a field of Bluebonnets is a favorite springtime tradition in Texas. But we take you to one town that is especially serious about its bluebonnets.

The United States has fallen from its precipice of leader in graduation rates in higher education since the 1980s argues Suzanne Mettler in her new book, "Degrees of Inequality: How the Politics of Higher Education Sabotaged the American Dream."

The public divestment of states has left many universities with less and less money, relying more and more on students to make up the difference. The result has been exploding costs and debt for students.

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