Iraq

In his powerful debut novel, “Spoils,” Brian Van Reet transports his readers to the messy, murky front lines of the Iraq War, and a morally complex landscape, where the U.S. mission of winning hearts and minds is anything but clear. The fog of war is felt by American soldiers, Islamic jihadists, and the innocent Iraqi civilians caught in the cross hairs, and Mr. Van Reet tells their intertwining stories with an emotional intensity and precision that is utterly believable. His book is a testament to the power of fiction to mine deeper truths.

Scott Anderson holds the unique distinction of having a full issue of The New York Times Magazine devoted to his story. That speaks both to the quality of his work, as well as to its immense relevance.

These days, the terrorist organization known as ISIS has much of the world on high alert. How this happened is the subject of a book by today’s guest, Washington Post reporter Joby Warrick.

Frankie Barnhill / Boise State Public Radio

Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter spoke to a large group gathered at the Idaho Fallen Heroes Memorial Wednesday morning in Boise to celebrate and commemorate the lives of those lost fighting the post-9/11 wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Some of the people in the crowd were families of Idaho soldiers who died in those wars.

Speaking to the crowd, Otter asked everyone to pause and remember that day 12 years ago, and the people who made the “ultimate sacrifice” in response to it.