Coming Up This Weekend


When companies want to understand global affairs, they hire someone like George Friedman. He runs Stratfor, a private intelligence company that provides long term intelligence and analysis to the highest bidder. Friedman is the author of “The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century.”

In this week’s installment of our ongoing series This I Believe, Bob talks with curator Dan Gediman about the essay of writer and educator Wallace Stegner. He published over 30 novels, collections of short stories and essays, and historical works. “The Big Rock Candy Mountain” was among his most popular novels, and Angle of Repose won the 1972 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Stegner wrote about the American West, which he also fought to protect.


Lee Smith has been writing fiction since she was a child, and her long career has drawn comparisons to Eudora Welty. In her new collection of short stories, “Mrs. Darcy and the Blue-Eyed Stranger,” Smith offers new works and favorites from older collections. She writes about religion, family and class in equal measure, creating characters who are searching for something beyond themselves.

Tim Wendel wanted to know which baseball pitcher threw the hardest ever. Instead of a single answer, his new book High Heat, explains why we’ll likely never know. Wendell discovered that the fast ball is alchemy and no one body shape tells the full tale of the fastest hurlers.