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NEW YORK (AP) — Young adult author John Green has written an introduction for a book about the teen cancer victim to whom he dedicated his best-selling novel "The Fault in Our Stars." Penguin Young Readers Group announced Thursday that it will publish "This Star Won't Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl" in early 2014. Along with Green's introduction, the book will compile writings and sketches by the girl from Quincy, Mass., known for the YouTube video journal about her terminal illness.
LONDON (AP) — He wrote a play called "Rock 'n' Roll," and now Tom Stoppard is returning to the topic with a radio drama inspired by Pink Floyd. The play marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the band's "The Dark Side of the Moon." The BBC said Thursday it is "a fantastical and psychedelic story based on themes from the seminal album." Pink Floyd formed in 1965 and soon became stars of London's psychedelic scene. "The Dark Side of the Moon," released in 1973, has sold more than 40 million copies.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Farmers intend to plant 97.3 million acres of corn this year, the most since 1936, the USDA's spring planting survey said Thursday. The survey said the 2013 corn planting forecast is up slightly from last year's 97.2 million acres. Corn remains profitable, as prices are holding strong at around $7 per bushel after last year's severe drought left the grain in short supply. In a separate report, the USDA said corn stocks fell 10 percent from a year ago to 5.40 billion bushels.
DULUTH, Minn. (AP) — It might not be the first place you'd imagine calling home, but a Duluth developer wants to turn the city's former St. Louis County Jail into apartments. Developer Grant Carlson told the Duluth News Tribune that he originally planned to market the property as commercial/office space, but after researching the local market, he realized the need for rental units in the city's downtown area. Duluth Mayor Don Ness said the city's downtown has an "extreme need" for new rental units.
LONDON (AP) — Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot in the head by the Taliban as she returned home from school, is writing a book about the traumatic event and her long-running campaign to promote children's education. Publisher Weidenfeld and Nicolson announced it would release "I am Malala" in Britain and Commonwealth countries this fall. Little, Brown and Co. will publish the 15-year-old's memoir in the United States and much of the rest of the world.
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Comedian Louie Anderson says he's been in pain all week from a recent diving mishap during a taping of the ABC celebrity diving show "Splash." Anderson, who weighs more than 400 pounds, was trying to do a flip from the 5-meter board when he slammed into the water, landing on his face and chest. "If I were lying down right now, you would have to help me up," the 60-year-old Anderson said Wednesday. "It's been almost a week and it still hurts almost as much."
COLD SPRING, Minn. (AP) — There's a water fight in Cold Spring. Or is it a beer fight? Third Street Brewhouse guzzles water from a local well to concoct its craft beers in Cold Spring, a city of 4,000. But the Department of Natural Resources says it's hurting trout in a nearby stream. The St. Cloud Times reports that the DNR will cut the brewery's water consumption by 80 percent next year, forcing the owners to turn to an already strained city water system.
DULUTH, Minn. (AP) — It's not the first place you might imagine calling home, but a Duluth developer wants to turn the city's former St. Louis County Jail into apartments. Developer Grant Carlson tells the Duluth News Tribune he originally planned to market the property as commercial/office space, but after researching the local market realized the need for rental units in the city's downtown area.
WASHINGTON (AP) — It would seem a lobbyist's dream: rounding up votes for a proposal backed by more than 8 in 10 people in polls. Yet, gun control supporters are struggling to win over moderate Democrats in their drive to push expanded background checks for firearms purchasers through the Senate next month.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut prosecutor leading the investigation into the Newtown school shooting says the gunman killed the 26 victims and took his own life within five minutes of shooting his way into the building. Search warrants say the 20-year-old gunman, Adam Lanza, was found dead wearing a bulletproof vest and military-style clothing.