Welcome to Speaking of Writers. Veteran broadcaster Steve Richards interviews local, regional and best selling authors. You can hear Speaking of Writers every Sunday morning at 6am on these Townsquare Media radio stations in Albany NY. 107.7 WGNA-FM, Q103 @103.5 and 103.9, Hot 99.1, ALT 105.7 and 104.5 WTMM. For more info email steve @email@example.com Cover art photo provided by Janko Ferlič on Unsplash:unsplash.com/@thepootphotographer
D.C. homicide detective Frank Lotello returns to find a mysterious vigilante serial killer who is bent on putting an end to political corruption. “Have you ever killed anyone? I have. I’ll do it again. If I need to.” The serial a killer is tried in Judge Cyrus Brooks’ courtroom. Discovering an illicit White House connection suggesting that things may not be as they appear, Lotello quietly approaches Brooks. Putting both of their careers in jeopardy, Lotello and Brooks secretly form an alliance to uncover the truth—before it’s too late. Barak’s novels are explosive, entertaining and intellectually provocative, no less than what you would expect from this experienced courtroom lawyer and former Olympic athlete, best known for writing at “the intersection of contemporary reality and fiction.” The Puppet Master is certain to appeal to all political and legal aficionados who are drawn to political thrillers, legal thrillers, suspense, mystery, crime, courtroom drama, sociopaths, psychopaths, serial killers, murder, and homicide.
RONALD S. BARAK is a novelist, Olympic athlete and experienced courtroom lawyer, best known for his Brooks/Lotello political/legal thriller series blurring reality and fiction. Barak’s novels entertain with matters timely and relevant to the current U.S. political and legal environment. After a distinguished legal career, Barak started writing novels in response to a “dare” from a friend. He is diabetic and in The Amendment Killer he made the 11-year-old kidnap victim diabetic. He and his wife, Barbie, are donating 50% of the profits from that book to diabetes research and education
The #1 New York Times bestselling authors of The Heart of Everything That Is return with one of the most inspiring—and underappreciated—chapters in American history: the story of the Continental Army’s six-month transformation in Valley Forge.
December 1777. It is 18 months after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, and some 12,000 members of America’s beleaguered Continental Army stagger into a small Pennsylvania encampment 23 miles northwest of British-occupied Philadelphia. The starving and half-naked force is reeling from a string of demoralizing defeats at the hands of King George III’s army, and are barely equipped to survive the coming winter. Their commander in chief, the focused and forceful George Washington, is at the lowest ebb of his military career. The Continental Congress is in exile and the American Revolution appears to be lost.
Yet a spark remains. Determined to keep the rebel cause alive through sheer force of will, Washington transforms the farmland plateau hard by the Schuylkill River into a virtual cabin city. Together with a dedicated coterie of advisers both foreign and domestic—Marquis de Lafayette, Baron von Steuben, the impossibly young Alexander Hamilton, and John Laurens—he sets out to breathe new life into his military force. Against all odds, as the frigid and miserable months pass, they manage to turn a bobtail army of citizen soldiers into a professional fighting force that will change the world forever.
Valley Forge is the story of how that metamorphosis occurred. Bob Drury and Tom Clavin, the team behind such bestsellers as The Heart of Everything That Is, The Last Stand of Fox Company, and Halsey’s Typhoon, show us how this miracle was accomplished despite thousands of American soldiers succumbing to disease, starvation, and the elements. Here is Steuben, throwing himself into the dedicated drilling sessions he imported from Prussian battlefields. Here is Hamilton, proffering the shrewd advice that wards off his beloved commander in chief’s scheming political rivals. Here is Laurens, determined to integrate the Continental Army with freed black men and slaves. Here is Lafayette, thirsting for battlefield accolades while tenaciously lobbying his own king for crucial French aid.
At the center of it all is George Washington, in the prime of his life yet confronting crushing failure as he fends off political conspiracies every bit as pernicious as his incessant military challenges. The Virginia planter-turned-general is viewed by many as unqualified to lead the Continental Army after the humiliating loss of Philadelphia, and his detractors in and out of Congress plot to replace him. The Valley Forge winter is his—and the revolution’s—last chance at redemption. And, indeed, after six months in the camp, Washington fulfills his destiny, leading the Continental Army to a stunning victory in the Battle of Monmouth Court House. The momentum is never again with the Redcoats.
Valley Forge is the riveting true story of a nascent United States toppling an empire. Using new and rarely seen contemporaneous documents—and drawing on a cast of iconic characters and remarkable moments that capture the innovation and energy that led to the birth of our nation—Drury and Clavin provide the definitive account of this seminal and previously undervalued moment in the battle for American independence.
Tom Clavin is the author or coauthor of sixteen books. For fifteen years he wrote for The New York Times and has contributed to such magazines as Golf, Men's Journal, Parade, Reader’s Digest, and Smithsonian. He is currently the investigative features correspondent for Manhattan Magazine. He lives in Sag Harbor, New York. Photo Credit: Anne Drager
What if the nightmares are actually memories?
It’s been a year since Poppy’s husband, Jack, was brutally murdered during his morning run through Manhattan’s Riverside Park. In the immediate aftermath, Poppy spiraled into an oblivion of grief, disappearing for several days only to turn up ragged and confused wearing a tight red dress she didn’t recognize. What happened to Poppy during those lost days? And more importantly, what happened to Jack?
The case was never solved, and Poppy has finally begun to move on. But those lost days have never stopped haunting her. Poppy starts having nightmares and blackouts—there are periods of time she can’t remember, and she’s unable to tell the difference between what is real and what she’s imagining. When she begins to sense that someone is following her, Poppy is plunged into a game of cat and mouse, determined to unravel the mystery around her husband’s death. But can she handle the truth about what really happened?
Lisa Unger is the New York Times and internationally bestselling, award-winning author of sixteen novels. Her new release UNDER MY SKIN is named one of the most anticipated and top thrillers of fall 2018 by BookBub, Bookish, Library Journal, Booklist, PopSugar and CrimeReads.
Her books are published in twenty-six languages worldwide, have sold millions of copies and have been voted “Best of the Year” or top picks by the Today show, Good Morning America, Entertainment Weekly, Amazon, Indie Booksellers, Goodreads and Sun Sentinel to name a few.
Her essays have appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR and Travel+Leisure Magazine. Lisa Unger lives in the Tampa Bay area of Florida with her husband, daughter and labradoodle.
At a time when the home ownership gap between whites and African Americans is greater than it was during the Jim Crow era, it seems important to recall some of the historical roots that gave rise to such inequality. And at a moment when the administration in the White House is actually weakening standards that banks must meet when considering community investment rather than strengthening them, the need to reflect becomes all the more urgent.
In Redlined: A Memoir of Race, Change, and Fractured Community in 1960s Chicago, author and documentarian Linda Gartz employs a trove of found documents to illuminate her family's experience of "redlining"--the marking off of areas where banks avoided making investments based on community "demographics." While the Chicago suburb of West Garfield Park is Gartz's focus here, similar events unfolded in other cities across the North, where as white-majority communities began to be integrated, banks employed discriminatory redlining, with white flight, disinvestment and community decline predictably following.
One of the interesting aspects of Linda's story is the evolution of her family on the civil rights arc: they neither took up King’s call to action, nor did they support the racist cause. Like so many white, middle Americans scared of the unknown, Gartz’s parents were at first reluctant to allow their community to be integrated. Yet they remained as their white neighbors fled, came to befriend their new neighbors, and in the end made a significant donation of real estate to a local organization that supported the Black community. The resulting picture is one of growth and change. And unafraid of tackling challenging family history, Gartz also explores the taboo subject of mental illness and the changing sexual mores of a country undergoing the tectonic shifts of the 1960s.
Investigative historian Peter Vronsky’s new book SONS OF CAIN: A History of Serial Killers from the Stone Age to the Present
Peter Vronsky is widely considered an expert in this specific field of history and has been featured on true crime podcasts in anticipation of the publication of SONS OF CAIN, which takes an in-depth examination of sexual serial killers throughout human history, how they evolved, and why we are drawn to their horrifying crimes.
Delving further back into human history and deeper into the human psyche than Vronsky’s 2004 book Serial Killers, which has been called the definitive history of serial murder, SONS OF CAIN, examines our understanding of serial killing from its prehistoric anthropological evolutionary dimensions in the pre-civilization era (c. 15,000 BC) to today. However, SONS OF CAIN is not a dry academic history nor a series of encyclopedic entries but a relatable narrative filled with fascinating stories and moments of black humor
SONS OF CAIN focuses strictly on sexual serial killers: thrill killers who engage in murder, rape, torture, cannibalism and necrophilia, as opposed to for-profit serial killers, including hit men, or “political” serial killers, like terrorists or genocidal murderers. These sexual serial killers differ from all other serial killers in their motives and their foundations. They are uniquely human and—as popular culture has demonstrated—uniquely fascinating.
Robert B. Parker's iconic and irresistible PI Sunny Randall is back in ROBERT B. PARKER’S BLOOD FEUD, written by the popular sports journalist, New York Times–bestselling author, and longtime friend of Parker, Mike Lupica. This is Lupica’s first Sunny Randall novel, and the seventh n the series.
In Lupica’s first installment in the popular series, the stakes are higher than ever as Sunny Randall races to protect her ex-husband—and his Mafia family—from the vengeful plan of a mysterious rival. Sunny is “on” again with Richie Burke, the ex-husband she never stopped loving and never seemed to be able to let go, despite her discomfort with his Mafia connections. When Richie is shot and nearly killed, Sunny is dragged into the thick of his family’s business as she searches for answers and tries to stave off a Mob war. But as the bullets start flying, Sunny finds herself targeted by the deranged mastermind of the plot against the Burke family, whose motive may be far more personal than she could ever have anticipated....
Robert B. Parker was the author of seventy books, including the legendary Spenser detective series, the novels featuring Chief Jesse Stone, and the acclaimed Virgil Cole/Everett Hitch westerns as well as the Sunny Randall novels. Winner of the Mystery Writers of America Grand Master Award and long considered the undisputed dean of American crime fiction, he died in January 2010. Mike Lupica is a prominent sports journalist and the New York Times–bestselling author of more than forty works of fiction and nonfiction. A longtime friend to Robert B. Parker, he was selected by the Parker estate to continue the Sunny Randall series.
www.mikelupicabooks.com / Twitter @mikelupica
On the eve of the fiftieth anniversary of the New York Jets' historic achievement, a nostalgic, inside look from the men who composed the team behind Joe Namath’s Super Bowl III win, filled with exclusive insights and stories from the surviving players, coaches, and management of that championship team whose victory changed the landscape of American football.
On January 12, 1969, the New York Jets astonished the nation when they beat the favored Baltimore Colts to win Super Bowl III. The key to the Jets’ success was quarterback Joe Namath, whose superstar talent, revolutionary personality, cockiness, and charm made him an instant celebrity. But Namath didn’t do it alone.
In Beyond Broadway Joe, the members of that legendary team share for the first time their often funny, sometimes poignant, and always perceptive personal stories and memorable anecdotes about the Super Bowl team, its players and coaches, and that legendary win. They reminisce about how they became Jets, their success on the gridiron—ten of them were AFC All Stars that magical year of 1968—and reveal for the first time the tactic Namath used to frustrate the Baltimore Colts’ defense. They speak about their reactions to Namath’s "guarantee" of a Jets' Super Bowl victory, and how the "39 Forgotten" Jets behind him enabled Joe to fulfill that boast. Furthermore, Lederer has interviewed members of the Baltimore team, to provide a 360-degree account of the game that changed it all. Inside, you'll learn:
How Joe Namath was able to manipulate the Baltimore Colts defense in Super Bowl III
About the player who convinced Joe Namath he was a “hot date” and pranked the playboy quarterback
How coach Weeb Ewbank used salaries of players on four other AFL teams to control Jets' player salaries
How one Jet, whose play was limited to two games his rookie year, convinced Jets' Coach and General Manager Weeb Ewbank that he would become an all-star
Why Jets' star offensive tackle Winston Hill, an eight-time All Pro tackle, was never considered, much less, elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame
How Super Bowl III may have saved the existence of several AFL teams scheduled to be part of the AFL-NFL merger
And much more!
The Jets players reflect on their evolution from a team considered part of a "Mickey Mouse" league, through the sudden transformation caused by the signing and introduction of Joe Namath on America’s sporting scene. The book explains from different angles—including Jets’ game plans—why Jets’ coaches and players were supremely confident going into Super Bowl III. Written by a lifelong Jets’ fan, Beyond Broadway Joe captures memories—and through never-before-seen material—sheds light on what happened from the 1963 launch of the Jets to the Super Bowl season and in Super Bowl III itself.
This first complete celebration of the Jets’ Super Bowl team is a must for every Jets diehard, for fans of the old American Football League, those who follow the history of professional football, and for all who love the game.
Bob Lederer is a writer and the founder of RFL Communications. A former resident of Flushing, New York, and current Jets fan from the team’s inception in 1963, he scrupulously followed the New York Jets through its early ups and downs—and its transformation into a championship contender. The Jets’ victory on January 12, 1969, when Bob was sixteen-years-old, was the most exciting sports day in his life. Now sixty-four, he has waited years to learn the full story from Joe Namath’s teammates, and can’t wait to share the Super Bowl-winning team’s story with Jets and football fans. He lives in Illinois.
Historian and New York Times bestselling author shares the complete biography of Thomas Cromwell, the man behind Henry VIII
Since the sixteenth century we have been fascinated by Henry VIII and the man who stood beside him, guiding him, enriching him, and enduring the king's insatiable appetites and violent outbursts until Henry ordered his beheading in July 1540. After a decade of sleuthing in the royal archives, Diarmaid MacCulloch has emerged with THOMAS CROMWELL: A Revolutionary Life, a tantalizing new understanding of Henry's mercurial chief minister.
History has not been kind to the son of a Putney brewer who became the architect of England's split with Rome. However, in THOMAS CROMWELL, MacCulloch unveils a more sympathetic figure. Was Cromwell the villain of history or the victim of its creation? MacCulloch sifted through letters and court records for answers and found Cromwell’s fingerprints on some of the most transformative decisions of Henry’s turbulent reign. However, he also found Cromwell the man, an administrative genius, and loving father.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Diarmaid MacCulloch is Professor of the History of the Church at Oxford University. His books include Thomas Cranmer: A Life, which won the Whitbread Biography Prize, the James Tait Black Prize, and the Duff Cooper Prize; The Reformation: A History, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Wolfson Prize; and Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years, a New York Times bestseller that won the Cundill Prize in History. An Anglican deacon, knighted in 2012, he has presented many highly celebrated documentaries for television and radio. He lives in Oxford, England.
From award-winning sportswriter John Feinstein, a YA novel about a teen golfer poised to blaze his way into Masters Tournament history—and he’ll face secrecy, sacrifice, and the decision of a lifetime to get there.
Seventeen-year-old Frank Baker is a golfing sensation. He’s set to earn a full-ride scholarship to play at the university of his choice, but his single dad wants him to skip college and turn pro—golf has taken its toll on the family bank account, and his dad is eager to start cashing in on his son’s prowess. Frank knows he isn’t ready for life on the pro tour—regardless of the potential riches—so his swing coach enlists a professional golfer turned journalist to be Frank’s secret adviser.
Pressure mounts when, after reaching the final of the U.S. Amateur tournament, Frank wins an automatic invite to the Masters. And when the prodigy, against all odds, starts tearing up the course at Augusta National, sponsors are lined up to throw money at him—and his father. But Frank’s entry in the Masters hinges on maintaining his standing as an amateur. Can he and his secret adviser—who has his own conflicts—keep Frank’s dad at bay long enough to bring home the legendary green jacket?
John Feinstein is the author of more than thirty books, including two #1 New York Times bestsellers, A Season on the Brink and A Good Walk Spoiled. He is also the author of numerous books for young readers, including Backfield Boys and the mystery Last Shot, which won the Edgar Allan Poe Award and was also a New York Times bestseller. John is a frequent contributor to The Washington Post, Golf Digest, Golf World.
About LONG ROAD TO MERCY: Eeny, meeny, miny, moe. Catch a tiger by its toe.
It’s seared into Atlee Pine’s memory: the kidnapper’s chilling rhyme as he chose between six-year-old Atlee and her twin sister, Mercy. Mercy was taken. Atlee was spared. She never saw Mercy again. Three decades after that terrifying night, Atlee Pine works for the FBI. She’s the lone agent assigned to the Shattered Rock, Arizona resident agency, which is responsible for protecting the Grand Canyon. When one of the Grand Canyon’s mules is found stabbed to death and mutilated at the bottom of the canyon—and its rider missing— Pine is called in to investigate. It soon seems clear the lost tourist had something more clandestine than sightseeing in mind, but just as Pine begins to put together clues pointing to a terrifying plot, she’s abruptly called off the case. If she disobeys direct orders by continuing to search for the missing man, it will mean the end of her career. But unless Pine keeps working the case and discovers the truth, it could spell the very end of democracy in America as we know it. Photo Credit: Guy Bell
DAVID BALDACCI is a global #1 bestselling author, and one of the world’s favorite storytellers. His books are published in over 45 languages and in more than 80 countries, with over 130 million worldwide sales. His works have been adapted for both feature film and television. David Baldacci is also the cofounder, along with his wife, of the Wish You Well Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting literacy efforts across America. Still a resident of his native Virginia, for more please visit DavidBaldacci.com and WishYouWellFoundation.org.
As a young man Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) escaped from slavery in Baltimore, Maryland. He was fortunate to have been taught to read by his slave owner mistress, and he would go on to become one of the major literary figures of his time. He wrote three versions of his autobiography over the course of his lifetime and published his own newspaper. His very existence gave the lie to slave owners: with dignity and great intelligence he bore witness to the brutality of slavery.
Initially mentored by William Lloyd Garrison, Douglass spoke widely, often to large crowds, using his own story to condemn slavery. He broke with Garrison to become a political abolitionist, a Republican, and eventually a Lincoln supporter. By the Civil War and during Reconstruction, Douglass became the most famed and widely travelled orator in the nation. He denounced the premature end of Reconstruction and the emerging Jim Crow era. In his unique and eloquent voice, written and spoken, Douglass was a fierce critic of the United States as well as a radical patriot. He sometimes argued politically with younger African-Americans, but he never forsook either the Republican party or the cause of black civil and political rights.
In this remarkable biography, David Blight has drawn on new information held in a private collection that few other historian have consulted, as well as recently discovered issues of Douglass’s newspapers. Blight tells the fascinating story of Douglass’s two marriages and his complex extended family. Douglass was not only an astonishing man of words, but a thinker steeped in Biblical story and theology. There has not been a major biography of Douglass in a quarter century. David Blight’s Frederick Douglass affords this important American the distinguished biography he deserves.
David W. Blight is Class of 1954 Professor of American History and Director of the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition at Yale University. He is the author or editor of a dozen books, including American Oracle: The Civil War in the Civil Rights Era; and Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory; and annotated editions of Douglass’s first two autobiographies. He has worked on Douglass much of his professional life, and been awarded the Bancroft Prize, the Abraham Lincoln Prize, and the Frederick Douglass Prize, among others
From New York Times bestselling historian H. W. Brands comes the riveting story of how, in nineteenth-century America, a new set of political giants battled to complete the unfinished work of the Founding Fathers and decide the future of our democracy
In the early 1800s, three young men strode onto the national stage, elected to Congress at a moment when the Founding Fathers were beginning to retire to their farms. Daniel Webster of Massachusetts, a champion orator known for his eloquence, spoke for the North and its business class. Henry Clay of Kentucky, as dashing as he was ambitious, embodied the hopes of the rising West. South Carolina’s John Calhoun, with piercing eyes and an even more piercing intellect, defended the South and slavery.
Together these heirs of Washington, Jefferson and Adams took the country to war, battled one another for the presidency and set themselves the task of finishing the work the Founders had left undone. Their rise was marked by dramatic duels, fierce debates, scandal and political betrayal. Yet each in his own way sought to remedy the two glaring flaws in the Constitution: its refusal to specify where authority ultimately rested, with the states or the nation, and its unwillingness to address the essential incompatibility of republicanism and slavery.
They wrestled with these issues for four decades, arguing bitterly and hammering out political compromises that held the Union together, but only just. Then, in 1850, when California moved to join the Union as a free state, “the immortal trio” had one last chance to save the country from the real risk of civil war. But, by that point, they had never been further apart.
Thrillingly and authoritatively, H. W. Brands narrates an epic American rivalry and the little-known drama of the dangerous early years of our democracy.
ABOUT H. W. BRANDS
H. W. BRANDS holds the Jack S. Blanton Sr. Chair in History at the University of Texas at Austin. A New York Times bestselling author, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in biography for The First American and Traitor to His Class
In YOUNG BENJAMIN FRANKLIN: THE BIRTH OF INGENUITY, Pulitzer Prize finalist Nick Bunker presents a fresh account of one of the most important figures in American history. From the fascinating story of the first 40 years of his life, Franklin emerges as a complex, even conflicted human being: ambitious, tough, and even ruthless as he picks his way through a harsh colonial world, but also poetic and imaginative, with strong emotions and a rebellious streak.
YOUNG BENJAMIN FRANKLIN contains a host of new discoveries about the people and incidents described in Franklin’s memoirs. Through meticulous research, Nick Bunker provides readers with a broader and deeper awareness of the world from which Franklin emerged, the early political climate of the American colonies, and the dawning of an age of science in the New World.
About the Author
Nick Bunker is the author of three non-fiction books, including An Empire on the Edge: How Britain Came to Fight America, which was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for History and won the 2015 George Washington Prize. Born in London and educated in the UK at King’s College, Cambridge and then in New York at Columbia University, Bunker began his career as a newspaper reporter in Liverpool in the 1980s and then moved to the Financial Times. After leaving journalism he worked in the stock market in London and in corporate finance, chiefly for the HongKong and Shanghai Banking Corporation. For many years he served on the board of the Freud Museum in Hampstead, London. Nick lives in the English cathedral city of Lincoln with his wife Sue and their otterhound, Champion Teckelgarth Mercury. Photo Credit: Michael Lionstar
Bestselling, award-winning author shares a landmark biography of WINSTON CHURCHILL, based on extensive new material—from private letters and diaries to transcripts of war cabinet meetings
When we seek an example of unalloyed courage, the man who comes to mind is Winston Churchill: the visionary leader, immune from the consensus of the day, who stood firmly for his beliefs when everyone doubted him. But how did young Winston become Churchill? What gave him the strength to take on the superior force of Nazi Germany when bombs rained on London and so many others had caved? In CHURCHILL: WALKING WITH DESTINY, Andrew Roberts looks at what made Churchill ultimately successful and assesses how he learned from his mistakes and harnessed the experiences of his life to serve his country.
Roberts was granted access to exclusive new material: Queen Elizabeth II allowed him to study her father, King George VI’s wartime diaries, which were filled with Churchill’s jokes, critiques, and reflections on how the war was going. In addition, Roberts studied the transcripts of war cabinet meetings—the equivalent of the Nixon and JFK tapes—diaries, letters, unpublished memoirs, and detailed notes taken by King George VI after their bi-weekly meetings, all of which provide a wonderful new historical source.
Andrew Roberts is the bestselling author of The Storm of War: A New History of the Second World War; Masters and Commanders: How Four Titans Won the War in the West, 1941-1945; and Napoleon: A Life, winner of the L.A. Times Book Prize for Biography. He has won many prizes, including the Wolfson History Prize and the British Army Military Book Award. He frequently writes for The Wall Street Journal, and is the Roger and Martha Mertz Visiting Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He lives in London and often lectures in New York.
Acclaimed historian shares a riveting account of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson: two beloved early Americans who forged a nation despite wildly different personalities, backgrounds, philosophies and values
New York Times Book Review Notable Book of 2017
Wall Street Journal Best Books of 2017
No relationship in America’s history better represents our nation’s internal struggles and our remarkable ability to mend division than that of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, figureheads of America’s first political parties. And no historian is better suited to craft their dual biography than Pulitzer Prize winner and New York Times bestselling author Gordon S. Wood. FRIENDS DIVIDED: John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, now in paperback, presents Wood’s most epic accomplishment to date. In this age of sour partisanship and polarizing news narratives, their story renews one’s pride in American principles, and provides a persuasive argument in favor of ongoing dialogue and civility in the face of bitter division.
Gordon S. Wood is the Alva O. Way University Professor and Professor of History Emeritus at Brown University. His books have received the Pulitzer, Bancroft and John H. Dunning prizes, as well as a National Book Award nomination and the New York Historical Society Prize in American History. They include Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, Revolutionary Characters, The Purpose of the Past, The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin, and The Idea of America. In 2010, he was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Barack Obama. Photo Credit: Penguin Random House Photo.
A conversation with Nathaniel Philbrick about his new book IN THE HURRICANE’S EYE. The book chronicles the remarkable year leading up to the siege of Yorktown, the battle that ultimately broke a years-long stalemate with the British and earned America her freedom. A narrative filled with historically misunderstood naval engagements such as the Battle of the Chesapeake, which was fought without a single American soldier, and unsung heroes lost to history like Spain’s Francisco Saavedra, who provided the French with both money and ships, IN THE HURRICANE’S EYE also highlights Washington’s underappreciated naval cunning and his fraught relationship with French leaders. The result is a surprising, thrillingly told, and revelatory conclusion to his groundbreaking series reinterpreting the American Revolution.
A conversation with University of Albany Alum Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah about his debut collection FRIDAY BLACK. By placing ordinary characters in extraordinary situations, Nana reveals the violence, injustice, and painful absurdities that black men and women contend with every day in this country. To set the scene: think Black Mirror meets Black Lives Matters. In the knockout opening story “The Finklestein Five,” we’re confronted by a man who is acquitted after using a chainsaw to massacre five black children standing outside the library, because he feels threatened by them. It’s an absolute gutpunch. Other stories in FRIDAY BLACK look at capitalism/consumerism and racism. Photo Credit: Limitless Imprint Entertainment
Kyle Mills talks about his new Vince Flynn/Mitch Rapp novel "Red War".
In recent years, a number of extremely dangerous world leaders have managed to increase their already considerable power. Some are busy tightening their grip on their countries like Recep Erdogan in Turkey or President Xi Jinping in China. Others, like Kim Jong-un in North Korea, already have uncontested control but are increasing their military capability. And finally, in a class by himself, is Vladimir Putin—a man who combines the dominance of the Kims with the military might of China.
For a while, I’ve been pondering what would happen if a modern dictator like Putin became physically or mentally ill. How far would he go to prevent the loss of his position? Would anyone in his inner circle have the courage to push back? And what would the rest of the world risk to rein him in?
Many of today’s dictators can’t just step down and trust that their replacement will protect them from the enemies they’ve made. Losing their edge—even for a moment—can be a matter of life or death. One moment of weakness and they could end up like Nicolae Ceausescu or Saddam Hussein.
Of all the world’s dictators, Vladimir Putin worries me the most. Credible reports suggest that he became obsessed with the gruesome videos of Muammar Gaddafi’s death, watching them over and over again. The older he gets, the more consumed he becomes with the idea that his reign might end with his body being dragged through the streets of Moscow.
With Putin as my inspiration, I started to scheme. If he became gravely ill, how would he continue to prevent his political opponents from rising up? How could he impede the foreign intelligence agencies looking to take advantage of his weakness? Who could he trust to protect him as he is transformed from de facto czar to wounded animal?
In my mind, there’s nothing someone like Vladimir Putin wouldn’t do to maintain his position—murder every Russian politician not loyal to him, go to war with America and NATO, or even use his nuclear arsenal.
Facing death on multiple fronts, he’d have nothing to lose.
Mitch Albom talks about his new book " The Next Person You Meet in Heaven".
In this enchanting sequel to the number one bestseller The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Mitch Albom tells the story of Eddie’s heavenly reunion with Annie—the little girl he saved on earth—in an unforgettable novel of how our lives and losses intersect.
Fifteen years ago, in Mitch Albom’s beloved novel, The Five People You Meet in Heaven, the world fell in love with Eddie, a grizzled war veteran- turned-amusement park mechanic who died saving the life of a young girl named Annie. Eddie’s journey to heaven taught him that every life matters. Now, in this magical sequel, Mitch Albom reveals Annie’s story.
The accident that killed Eddie left an indelible mark on Annie. It took her left hand, which needed to be surgically reattached. Injured, scarred, and unable to remember why, Annie’s life is forever changed by a guilt-ravaged mother who whisks her away from the world she knew. Bullied by her peers and haunted by something she cannot recall, Annie struggles to find acceptance as she grows. When, as a young woman, she reconnects with Paulo, her childhood love, she believes she has finally found happiness.
As the novel opens, Annie is marrying Paulo. But when her wedding night day ends in an unimaginable accident, Annie finds herself on her own heavenly journey—and an inevitable reunion with Eddie, one of the five people who will show her how her life mattered in ways she could not have fathomed.
Poignant and beautiful, filled with unexpected twists, The Next Person You Meet in Heaven reminds us that not only does every life matter, but that every ending is also a beginning—we only need to open our eyes to see it.
Mitch Albom is a bestselling novelist, a screen-writer, a playwright, and an award-winning journalist. He is the author of six consecutive number-one New York Times bestsellers and has sold more than thirty-four million copies of his books in forty-two languages worldwide. Tuesdays with Morrie, which spent four years atop the New York Times list, is the bestselling memoir of all time.
Albom has founded seven charities, including the first-ever full-time medical clinic for homeless children in America. He also operates an orphanage in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. He lives with his wife, Janine, in suburban Detroit.