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Lourdes Garcia-Navarro

Lulu Garcia-Navarro is the host of Weekend Edition Sunday and one of the hosts of NPR's morning news podcast Up First. She is infamous in the IT department of NPR for losing laptops to bullets, hurricanes, and bomb blasts.

Before joining the Sunday morning team, she served as an NPR correspondent based in Brazil, Israel, Mexico, and Iraq. She was one of the first reporters to enter Libya after the 2011 Arab Spring uprising began and spent months painting a deep and vivid portrait of a country at war. Often at great personal risk, Garcia-Navarro captured history in the making with stunning insight, courage, and humanity.

For her work covering the Arab Spring, Garcia-Navarro was awarded a 2011 George Foster Peabody Award, a Lowell Thomas Award from the Overseas Press Club, an Edward R. Murrow Award from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and the Alliance for Women and the Media's Gracie Award for Outstanding Individual Achievement. She contributed to NPR News reporting on Iraq, which was recognized with a 2005 Peabody Award and a 2007 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton. She has also won awards for her work on migration in Mexico and the Amazon in Brazil.

Since joining Weekend Edition Sunday, Garcia-Navarro and her team have also received a Gracie for their coverage of the #MeToo movement. She's hard at work making sure Weekend Edition brings in the voices of those who will surprise, delight, and move you, wherever they might be found.

Garcia-Navarro got her start in journalism as a freelancer with the BBC World Service and Voice of America. She later became a producer for Associated Press Television News before transitioning to AP Radio. While there, Garcia-Navarro covered post-Sept. 11 events in Afghanistan and developments in Jerusalem. She was posted for the AP to Iraq before the U.S.-led invasion, where she stayed covering the conflict.

Garcia-Navarro holds a Bachelor of Science degree in international relations from Georgetown University and an Master of Arts degree in journalism from City University in London.

As the number of new coronavirus cases spikes in several states across the U.S., governors, county officials and business owners have been crafting laws and guidelines that mandate the use of face masks to help prevent the spread of the virus.

But even a simple cloth face covering has become political.

The settings: A lavish Capri wedding, Italian villas, mansions in the Hamptons and a mega-yacht.

The love interests: George Zao, a Chinese-Australian surfer, and Lucie Tang Churchill of, yes, those Churchills.

The book: Sex and Vanity. And it could only be written by Kevin Kwan, author of Crazy Rich Asians, who says he felt like it was time to move on from the decadent, glamorous world of that series.

Olivia Monroe has just moved to Los Angeles to open her own law firm.

Max Powell is a U.S. Senator who usually spends his weeks in D.C.

After a meet-cute at a hotel bar, they begin a casual, weekends-only long-distance fling. Or is it more? That's the setup for novelist Jasmine Guillory's new romance Party of Two. And it has some timely themes — Olivia is black, Max is white.

Padma Lakshmi — the host of the cooking competition Top Chef — is on a new gastronomical journey, taking her to places you've probably heard of, like Chinatown in San Franscisco, and others you may not, like Little Lima in New Jersey.

The new show is called Taste the Nation, and Lakshmi does not shy away from the complicated history and politics that remind us who is really at the center of our favorite "American" dishes: immigrants.

The first sign that something was wrong came with stomach pains. It was April 30, and 9-year-old Kyree McBride wasn't feeling well.

His mother, Tammie Hairston, thought it might have been something that he ate. But soon, young McBride was battling a 102-degree fever.

Worried he may have contracted the coronavirus, Hairston took her son to the hospital. "It was a quick in and out of the emergency room," she said. Doctors told her to take him home and monitor him.

"I wasn't afraid of fighting," Ilhan Omar writes about her childhood in Somalia in her new memoir. "I felt like I was bigger and stronger than everyone else — even if I knew that wasn't really the case."

In This Is What America Looks Like: My Journey from Refugee to Congresswoman, Omar chronicles her childhood in a middle-class family compound in Mogadishu, followed by civil war, four years in a refugee camp, a journey to the United States and ultimately her election to Congress as a Democrat representing Minnesota's 5th district.

A young Hillary Rodham, madly in love with the man she met at Yale Law School, abandons her own path and heads to Arkansas. Slowly she starts to uncover Bill Clinton's many infidelities and makes a choice.

What would have happened if Hillary Rodham had never married Bill Clinton?

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

If you are anything like me, this pandemic may have sent you back seeking solace in the films from your childhood, "Mary Poppins," "The Sound Of Music." If so, this voice will be familiar and very, very comforting.

Idi Amin, Fidel Castro, Enver Hoxha, Saddam Hussien, and Pol Pot. Sure, they were ruthless leaders — but more importantly, what did they eat?

In the new book How to Feed a Dictator, journalist Witold Szablowski tracks down the chefs who served these five men, to paint intimate portraits of how they were at home and at the table.

There are still many questions about schizophrenia — what it is, what causes it, and how to treat it.

One family has helped researchers take steps forward in attempts to find answers to these questions.

The Galvins seemed like a model for baby-boomer America, 12 children with a military dad and a strict but religious mother growing up in Colorado in the 1960s. But over the years, six of the boys in the family were diagnosed with schizophrenia.

As the coronavirus pandemic intensifies across the country, many churches, synagogues, temples and mosques are temporarily shutting their doors to all public services.

Although there are exemptions for some religious services, congregations are still expected to follow state stay-at-home orders and limitations on gatherings.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

One final thought - if you are anything like me, you've probably been frantically exchanging messages with friends and family and memes and also...

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "CORONAVIRUS RHAPSODY")

Cameron Esposito couldn't have known her memoir Save Yourself would come out in the midst of a global pandemic. But her aptly titled book includes observations that feel eerily pertinent to this unsettling time.

"Humans are scared out of our minds and want to be saved," she writes. " We want to know why we are here, what we are supposed to do, and how to protect ourselves."

Esposito is a comic, writer and actor. When she titled her book, she had in mind queer kids, struggling to understand themselves — as she once did growing up in a strict Catholic household.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

As people adjust to this new lockdown normal, they're also trying to hang on to those moments that bring joy and comfort. And so people are celebrating life's big moments, with some adjustments.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Author and blogger Glennon Doyle has something to tell all the women out there trying to put a brave face on a terrible situation, juggling home life with all the other expectations placed on them as the world seems like it's falling apart: "I think every woman on earth needs to lower her expectations for herself, exponentially. At this point, we're not trying to be amazing.

Even as the number of new coronavirus infections continues to spiral upward in countries around the world, a top global health expert says it's not too late to contain the virus.

"As long as you have these discrete outbreaks ... there is the opportunity to control them — to get on top of these and contain them and prevent a lot of disease and ultimately death," says Dr. Bruce Aylward, a senior adviser to the director-general of the World Health Organization. "That's the big message we saw in China — and one of the big surprises."

Jessica Simpson is back in the news, this time in her own words.

In her new memoir, Open Book, Simpson writes honestly about her career as a pop singer, her marriage to and divorce from Nick Lachey, her stint on reality TV, and her time with John Mayer. And she reflects on becoming a fashion mogul with a billion-dollar company.

But she also opens up about sexual abuse she experienced in childhood — and addiction.

Interview Highlights

On why she decided to open up now

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

True story: This past Valentine's Day I was walking out of the office when I overheard a group of younger colleagues saying that they were staying in to watch the sequel to Netflix's To All the Boys I've Loved Before, called P.S. I Still Love You. Then my sister called me to say the very same thing. And I will confess, I watched it too.

James Taylor has been a household name for a long time now. Taylor was just 20-years-old when he released his self-titled debut in 1968; in the half century since then, he has sold over 100 million albums and cemented his status as one of the most successful American singer-songwriters.

A new exhibition at the Foundling Museum in London looks closely at 500 years of portraiture to explore how pregnancy was depicted — and not depicted — from the Tudors to today.

In the new television series Star Trek: Picard, Patrick Stewart reprises his beloved character, Starfleet Captain Jean-Luc Picard, 17 years after Picard's last movie appearance.

For seven seasons, the leader of the Starship Enterprise exuded wit, grit and refinement while protecting the galaxy from harm in a future that saw humans as peacekeeping explorers.

But when the Picard producers first approached the actor, Stewart was uninterested in returning to the character who defended a utopian vision when he felt the real world had taken a dystopian turn.

Kristen Bell knows that Frozen II has big snowshoes to fill. Its 2013 prequel busted box office records and earned an eye-popping a $1.27 billion globally.

But she calls herself an optimist.

"In my mind, if you make a recipe and the cake comes out great, you make it again the next day with the same ingredients. Why on earth wouldn't it be great?" said Bell in an interview with NPR's Weekend Edition.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

What you're listening to is the soundtrack of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia - a healthy section of the reef. And here's the sound from where the coral has died.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Two science students at MIT broke a world record last week. They shattered it, actually. Their achievement - well, it's not exactly going to get a Nobel. We'll let them explain. Amber VanHemel begins.

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Jimmy Kimmel wants parents to know one thing about his debut children's book: It takes just five minutes to read.

Children of Blood and Bone was an instant success last year.

The young adult fantasy novel by then-24-year-old author Tomi Adeyemi has so far spent 89 weeks on The New York Times bestseller list. It made countless best books lists, and it was optioned for a movie by Disney. It spoke to people.

"I always pitched it as Black Panther with magic," Adeyemi says. "It's this epic young adult fantasy about a girl fighting to bring magic back to her people."

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