Top Picks: The soundtrack to the HBO series Treme, CNN's series about the postwar era, and more top picks

National Geographic follows paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey and his family, a videographer uniquely captures his children's lives, and more top picks.


War in high definition

The War, a 2007 PBS miniseries about World War II crafted by documentary-maker par excellence Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, goes Blu-ray May 15. In addition to the 15-hour production, viewers will find a "making of" feature, deleted scenes, commentary from Burns, and additional interviews. Burns captures much of what the war meant to Americans then – and means to them now.

History in perspective

The sweeping, 24-episode CNN series about the postwar era, Cold War, is out on DVD May 8. Narrated by actor Kenneth Branagh, the series contains original archival material from around the globe, and features interviews from key political leaders such as Mikhail Gorbachev, Fidel Castro, Jimmy Carter, Lech Walesa, and others. It's a library must for the history buff.

Tracking man's footsteps

The Bones of Turkana, an award-winning National Geographic special airing on PBS, follows legendary paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey and his family as they paint an indelible picture of the transformation of a species – ours – from tree-swinger to fast-running, quick-thinking, stone-tool-making linguist. The special follows 40 years of digging to show why the Leakeys believe Turkana, nestled in the African landscape, holds revelations about our past and prophesies about our future. Airs May 16 on PBS at 10 p.m.

Save your spot online

Looking to improve your online reading? Try the new free service Pocket. This lovely rebranding of Read It Later saves stories in an online folder so that you can read them at home, on a different computer, or on the go. Pocket displays everything in a clean, easy-to-read format and is ad-free. Our favorite feature: It stores a copy of each article on your phone or tablet so that you can read offline – great for subway tunnels, airplane rides, or poolside reading. It runs on iPhones, iPads, Kindle Fires, Android devices, and most Web browsers.

They grow up so fast

Videographer Frans Hofmeester brings new meaning to the term "home video." He filmed his daughter, Lotte, from her birth until her current age of 12, then compiled the videos in a kind of a time lapse, showing his daughter blossom from a gurgling baby into a giggling preteen in just under three minutes. He's also done the same for his 9-year-old son, Vince. Check out his time capsules at

Big Easy rhythm

The music is the raison d'être for the HBO show Treme, centered in New Orleans, and Rounder Records' Season 2 soundtrack collection revels in the intricacies of the Crescent City's underlying rhythms of traditional jazz, blues, roots, Cajun, R&B, and hip-hop. Whether you've seen the series or not, this infectious album will inspire you to boogie, jive, and jump for joy.

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