Character Actor Stephen Root

After appearing in nearly 800 TV episodes and 100 films, Root received his first Emmy nomination for his role as a handler to a hitman in the HBO series ‘Barry.’ He also talks about his iconic roles in ‘O Brother, Where Art Thou?’ and ‘Office Space.’

Also, jazz critic Kevin Whitehead reviews the album ‘Begin Again’ from pianist Fred Hersch, and film critic Justin Chang reviews ‘Brittany Runs a Marathon,’ starring Jillian Bell.

Exploring Underwater Caves

Diver and photographer Jill Heinerth talks about some of her most dangerous and exhilarating experiences underwater — like getting trapped inside an iceberg in Antarctica. Heinerth also shares how she stays calm when things go wrong: “I take a really deep breath and try and slow my heart, slow my breathing, and then just focus on pragmatic small steps,” she says. Her new book is ‘Into the Planet.’

Also, book critic Maureen Corrigan reviews two mystery novels — Laura Lippman’s ‘Lady in the Lake’ and Ruth Ware’s ‘The Turn of the Key.’

Best Of: Colson Whitehead / A Bioethicist’s Personal Struggle With Opioids

Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Colson Whitehead’s new book, ‘The Nickel Boys,’ is based on the true story of a notorious Florida reform school where many boys were beaten and sexually abused. Dozens of unmarked graves were discovered on the school grounds, which the state shut down in 2011. Maureen Corrigan reviews the novel, and then the author speaks with contributor Dave Davies.

Travis Rieder became dependent on opioids after a motorcycle accident in 2015 that crushed his left foot, and forced him to endure six surgeries. His book ‘In Pain’ draws on his insights as a patient, and his subsequent research into pain medicine, to examine the larger problems and dilemmas surrounding prescription opioids and the larger opioid crisis.

Actor Jonathan Groff

Groff stars in the crime-thriller series ‘Mindhunter,’ now in its second season on Netflix. He also talks about his roles on HBO’s ‘Looking,’ and as King George III in ‘Hamilton’ on Broadway. (Originally broadcast October 2017)

Also, film critic Justin Chang reviews ‘Where’d You Go, Bernadette?’ starring Cate Blanchett, directed by Richard Linklater.

Kitten Lady

Hannah Shaw’s job title is “professional kitten rescuer.” Known on YouTube and Instagram as Kitten Lady, she has rescued hundreds of neonatal kittens, often orphaned and unweaned, who require a level of care that most shelters cannot provide. That’s where Shaw steps in. Her new book about fostering kittens is ‘Tiny but Mighty.’

Also, we remember late jazz saxophonist and clarinetist Bob Wilber. He spoke with Terry Gross in 1988. And TV critic David Bianculli reviews ‘Why Women Kill,’ a mystery anthology series on CBS All Access.

Janet Mock On ‘Pose’

Mock made history as the first trans woman of color to write and direct an episode of TV for her work on Ryan Murphy’s FX series ‘Pose.’ The show centers on the trans and queer ball culture in New York City in the ’80s and ’90s. Mock talks with Terry Gross about drawing from her own life to write for ‘Pose,’ growing up in Hawaii, and doing sex work as a young person to save money for reassignment surgery.

The ‘Secret History’ Of Koch Industries

In his new book, ‘Kochland,’ journalist Christopher Leonard chronicles how Koch Industries and Charles and David Koch acquired huge businesses, limited their liability and created a political influence network to remake the Republican Party. Leonard says President Trump is a threat to that vision.

Sister Helen Prejean

Prejean is best known for her 1993 memoir, ‘Dead Man Walking,’ about her role as a spiritual adviser to a convicted killer on death row. The story was adapted into an Oscar-winning film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn. Prejean has accompanied six prisoners to their executions and has been at the forefront of activism against the death penalty. “I read scripture to them. … All I knew was: I couldn’t let them die alone.” Her new memoir, ‘River of Fire,’ details her spiritual journey up to that point.

Also, John Powers reviews the documentary ‘Honeyland.’

Best Of: Filmmaker Rodney Evans / Writer Jia Tolentino

Rodney Evans is still making movies, despite having lost much of his vision. His new documentary, ‘Vision Portraits,’ is about how he and three other blind or visually impaired artists (a photographer, a dancer, and a writer) continue to do their work.

Linguist Geoff Nunberg considers the use of the word “they” as a gender-neutral pronoun.

‘New Yorker’ staff writer Jia Tolentino writes about how social media shapes identity, public discourse and political engagement, particularly for millennials like herself. She talks about growing up in a Houston megachurch, her devastating year in the Peace Corps, and how religion led her to MDMA. Her new book of essays is ‘Trick Mirror.’