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A surprise winner at this year's National Book Award, James McBride's latest novel takes on the story of abolitionist John Brown's doomed raid on the arsenal at Harper's Ferry. In this satirical tale, the young narrator is a boy mistaken for a girl and taken into Brown's retinue. Onion, as he's nicknamed, gets a front-seat view of history as Brown plans his raid, meeting Frederick Douglas, Harriet Beecher Stowe and other well-known historical figures. We speak with McBride about the novel, as well as the band he formed to play music that inspired Brown.
From "The Good Lord Bird" by James McBride. Copyright © 2013 by James McBride. Reprinted by permission of Riverhead Hardcover.
The D.C. Council has taken steps to accelerate tax cuts for all income earners. They're part of a broader overhaul of the city's tax levels, but some council members argued there wasn't enough time for a rigorous debate about the new schedule. We explore the debate over cutting taxes for D.C. residents and how it affects the city's ability to pay for critical local services.