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One of the alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell has a memoir coming out this fallBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJuly 27, 2021, 5:19 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — One of the alleged victims of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell has a memoir coming out this fall. Sarah Ransome’s “Silenced No More: Surviving My Journey to Hell and Back” is scheduled for Nov. 17.Ransome has said that she was 22 and an aspiring student at the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan when she met Epstein in 2006 and soon found herself entrapped in his world on a private island in the Caribbean. Maxwell oversaw and trained recruiters, developed recruiting plans and helped conceal the activity from law enforcement, according to Ransome, who has alleged Epstein raped her repeatedly.“Though my own story is centered on sexual abuse, all trauma lives in the body. It changes the shape of one’s soul,” Ransome said in a statement Tuesday released by HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. “By sharing my testimony — by using my book as a platform to start an evocative conversation, among all readers, and particularly among women — I hope to see both minds and laws changed.“More than anything, I want to encourage a culture in which women, even if they haven’t led the perfect lives, even if they’re not proud of every one of their choices, still feel the right to stand in their truth. That, in these years, is what I’m still learning to do.”Ransome settled a lawsuit with Epstein and Maxwell in 2018. Maxwell, jailed at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn since last July, has pleaded not guilty to sex trafficking charges. Epstein killed himself in his cell at a federal Manhattan lockup in August 2019 as he awaited a sex trafficking trial.———This story corrects that Ransome did not allege she was directly recruited by Maxwell.
The next book by former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is addressed to his fellow RepublicansBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJune 28, 2021, 5:12 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — The next book by former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is addressed to his fellow Republicans.“Republican Rescue: Saving the Party from Truth Deniers, Conspiracy Theorists, and the Dangerous Policies of Joe Biden” will be published Nov. 16, Threshold Editions announced Monday. Threshold, a conservative imprint of Simon & Schuster, is calling the book “a timely and urgent guide to moving the party forward.”Christie was among the first prominent Republicans to endorse Donald Trump for president in 2016 and helped prepare him for last fall’s debates against Biden. But he has differed with Trump and many party members over their false contentions that Trump won the election in 2020. He has even spoken in favor of Trump’s impeachment for inciting the mob which stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.Christie, often mentioned as a possible 2024 presidential contender, has said he will not wait to see if Trump is running before making a decision.“As a Republican insider, Christie feels compelled to weigh in on the past four years, but especially the past few months, and explain how these falsehoods, and the grievance politics they support, cost his party the House, the Senate and the White House in two years, for the first time since Herbert Hoover,” Threshold announced.“Christie delivers a frank insider’s account of that election and the tragic descent of some members of the Republican Party into cowardice and madness, as well as no-nonsense solutions for how to recover the party’s image and integrity, and how to beat back the ultra-liberal policies of Joe Biden’s Democrats.”Christie previously wrote the memoir “Let Me Finish,” which came out in 2019. “Republican Rescue” is the first of a two-book deal, with the second release to be determined. Trump published his 2015 campaign book ”Crippled America” with Threshold.
President Joe Biden’s sister, confidante and longtime political strategist, Valerie Biden Owens, has a book dealBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJune 24, 2021, 10:13 AM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — President Joe Biden’s sister, confidante and longtime political strategist, Valerie Biden Owens, has a book deal.Celadon Books told The Associated Press on Thursday that Owens’ “Growing Up Biden” will come out April 12 of next year. She is expected to cover everything from her childhood as the only girl among four siblings to her “trailblazing, decades-long professional relationship” with Biden, who has referred to Owens as his best friend. Vogue magazine last year dubbed her “The Joe Biden Whisperer.”The 75-year-old Owens has been working with her older brother for virtually his entire career, dating back to high school in Delaware. She managed his winning 1972 run for the U.S. Senate and his unsuccessful presidential attempts in 1988 and 2008 and was a top advisor for his election to the White House in 2020. She also has been closely involved with his own family, quitting her job as a teacher and moving in with him for four years so she could care for his two sons after he lost his first wife and 13-month old daughter in a 1972 car accident.“Valerie Biden was the cornerstone that allowed me to sustain and then rebuild my family,” Biden wrote in “Promises to Keep: On Life and Politics,” published in 2007.Financial terms were not disclosed. Owens was represented by Javelin, the Washington, D.C.-based literary agency where other clients have included former FBI Director James Comey, former National Security Adviser John Bolton and former House Speaker John Boehner.Celadon Books is a division of Macmillan Publishers, which in 2017 released Joe Biden’s “Promise Me, Dad,” about his son Beau Biden, who died of brain cancer in 2015.“Our family’s story is a very American one — full of joy but also shadowed by tragedy,” Owens said in a statement. “What we Bidens learned long ago is a timeless lesson: that family matters, possibility can emerge from pain, and the ties that bind us together are stronger than anything that might pull us apart. So this will be a story of one family — but our story, I hope, will resonate and inspire.”
Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka will be attending this fall’s PEN America literary galaBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJune 23, 2021, 4:02 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka will be attending this fall’s PEN America literary gala, flying in from his native Nigeria to help present an award to the author, scholar and filmmaker Henry Louis Gates Jr.“It means a great deal to Skip Gates and to PEN America that Wole Soyinka has decided to join us for what will be an unforgettable occasion,” PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel said in a statement Wednesday. “Wole Soyinka is a giant in world literature. His stature is proportionate to the momentous task of recognizing Professor Gates for his contributions to our understanding of history and culture.”Oscar-winner Jodie Foster will also speak about Gates at the PEN event, either in person or through a taped message, the literary and human rights organization announced.Gates, a Harvard University professor who directs the school’s center for African and American research and has worked on a wide range of books and films, is to receive the PEN/Audible Literary Service Award. He knows both Soyinka and Foster well. Foster was his student when she attended Yale University in the 1980s and he helped advise her on her senior thesis about Nobel laureate Toni Morrison. Gates and Soyinka, the 86-year-old novelist, playwright and poet, first met in 1973 when both were visiting Fellows at Clare College.It was Soyinka, Gates said in a statement, “who told me that my fate was to become a professor of African and African American Studies, and it was past time to abandon my parents’ dream that I become a physician. It took a bit for me to accept their advice, but soon I did and the rest they say…. !”The PEN gala is scheduled for Oct. 5 at its traditional venue, the American Museum of Natural History, after being held virtually last year because of the pandemic. PEN previously announced that Walt Disney Chairman and former CEO Robert A. Iger will receive the PEN America Corporate Honoree award, and will be introduced by Lin-Manuel Miranda.
The estate of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has reached an agreement with HarperCollins Publishers for rights to his archiveBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJune 22, 2021, 1:30 PM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — The estate of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. has reached an international agreement with HarperCollins Publishers, which released his first book more than 60 years ago, for rights to his archive.“The King Estate is pleased to return the publishing rights to Dr. King’s literary archive to his original publisher,” the manager of King’s estate, Eric Tidwell, said in a statement Tuesday. “Dr. King’s prophetic message of peace, hope, love and equality continue to impact the world today. That message is needed now more than ever. We look forward to utilizing HarperCollins’ global footprint to continue the perpetuation of Dr. King’s wonderful legacy through new creative literary projects.”The King estate had been publishing since 2009 with Beacon Press, including the late civil rights leader’s first work, “Stride Toward Freedom.” That account of the 1955-’56 Montgomery, Alabama, bus boycott helped bring him national prominence. “Stride Toward Freedom” was first released in 1958 by what was then Harper & Brothers. Beacon also released editions of King’s speeches and sermons, among other books.Literary agent Amy Berkower, who represented the King estate, said sales had been disappointing in recent years.“We felt the books had to be packaged in a much more contemporary way,” she said.Judith Curr, president and publisher of HarperCollins’ HarperOne Group division, will oversee the global reissue of King’s books and the release of works based on his life and writing, ranging from children’s stories to graphic novels. She also plans an annual reissue of his “I Have a Dream” speech from the 1963 March on Washington, with a new introduction each year from a contemporary writer, and a journal featuring the words of Dr. King that also leaves space for readers to add their thoughts.At HarperOne, Curr has published several works by the late Zora Neale Hurston, including such posthumous bestsellers as the nonfiction “Barracoon” and the story collection “Hitting a Straight Lick with a Crooked Stick.”“Our goal was to make Zora Neale Hurston a household name with younger readers,” Curr said. “And right now, nothing seems more relevant to the current moment than the words of Martin Luther King.”
For her tour this fall to promote her memoir “Going There,” Katie Couric is anticipating not only the interest of her fans but a return to something like a pre-pandemic world — a nationwide book tourBy HILLEL ITALIE AP National WriterJune 21, 2021, 9:54 AM• 2 min readShare to FacebookShare to TwitterEmail this articleNEW YORK — For her tour this fall to promote her memoir “Going There,” Katie Couric is anticipating not only the interest of her fans but a return to something like a pre-pandemic world.Book events have remained mostly virtual even as movie theaters and concert halls have begun reopening. Couric’s 11-city tour, announced Monday by Little, Brown and Company and Live Nation, will very much be in person, and well beyond the scale of book stores and libraries and other typical settings for authors. She opens Oct. 28 at Boston’s Orpheum Theatre, two days after “Going There” is released, and her itinerary also includes the Beacon Theatre in Manhattan, Atlanta Symphony Hall and the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee.Special guests, to be announced, with be joining her at each stop.“Given the challenging period we’ve been through, I’m so excited to be out in the world, creating a sense of community and a place where we can all get together for meaningful conversations, and have some fun, too,” Couric said in statement.The tour will be produced by Live Nation, the concert promoter which previously worked on an author event scaled even higher — Michelle Obama’s tour for her 2018 memoir “Becoming.”“It is truly an honor to work with the iconic Katie Couric and present her to live audiences across the country,” Live Nation Women President and Chief Strategy Officer Ali Harnell said in a statement. “She has always provided so much inspiration to people everywhere, particularly women.”While Obama appeared at the Forum in Los Angeles and other venues with seating capacities of 10,000 or more, Couric’s tour is more in line with Hillary Clinton’s events for her 2017 book “What Happened” or David Sedaris’ planned stops this fall for “A Carnival of Snackeries: Diaries: Volume Two.” The Orpheum in Boston, the Beacon in New York and other stops have capacities of 2,000-3,000.Publishers so far have hesitated to announce plans for future tours, though some in-person appearances are taking place. Jennifer Weiner is scheduled to read next month at Browseabout Books in Rehoboth, Delaware, and at other stores to promote her new novel “That Summer.” T.J. Newman, author of the debut “Thriller,” will be reading in July at the Changing Hands Bookstore in Phoenix, Arizona, where she used to work, and at the Mysterious Bookshop in Manhattan.———Online: https://katiecouric.com
NEW YORK — Janet Malcolm, the inquisitive and boldly subjective author and reporter known for her challenging critiques of everything from murder cases and art to journalism itself, has died. She was 86.Malcolm died Wednesday at New York Presbyterian Hospital, according to her daughter, Anne Malcolm. The cause was lung cancer.A longtime New Yorker staff writer and the author of several books, the Prague native practiced a kind of post-modern style in which she often called attention to her own role in the narrative, questioning whether even the most conscientious observer could be trusted.“Every journalist who is not too stupid or too full of himself to notice what is going on knows that what he does is morally indefensible” was how she began “The Journalist and the Murderer.” The 1990 book assailed Joe McGinniss’ true crime classic “Fatal Vision” as a prime case of the author tricking his subject, convicted killer Jeffrey MacDonald. It was one of many works by Malcolm that set off debates about her profession and compelled even those who disliked her to keep reading.Reviewing a 2013 anthology of her work, “Forty-One False Starts,” for The New York Times, Adam Kirsch praised Malcolm for “a powerfully distinctive and very entertaining literary experience.”“Most of the pieces in the book find Malcolm observing artists and writers either present (David Salle, Thomas Struth) or past (Julia Margaret Cameron, Edith Wharton),” Kirsch wrote. “But what the reader remembers is Janet Malcolm: her cool intelligence, her psychoanalytic knack for noticing and her talent for withdrawing in order to let her subjects hang themselves with their own words.”On Thursday, New Yorker editor David Remnick praised Malcolm as a “master of nonfiction writing” and cited her willingness to take on her peers.”Journalists can be among the most thin-skinned and self-satisfied of tribes, and Janet had the nerve to question what we do sometimes,” Remnick told The Associated Press.Malcolm’s words — and those she attributed to others — brought her esteem, scorn and prolonged litigation.In 1983, she reported on a former director of the London-based Sigmund Freud Archives, psychoanalyst Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson. She contended that Masson had called himself an “intellectual gigolo,” had vowed he would be known as “the greatest analyst who ever lived,” and that he would turn Freud’s old home into a “place of sex, women, fun.” Her reporting appeared in The New Yorker and was the basis for the 1984 book “In the Freud Archives.”Masson, alleging that five quotations had been fabricated and ruined his reputation, sued for $7 million. The case lasted for years, with the U.S. Supreme Court allowing it go to trial and Malcolm testifying, to much skepticism, that she could not find a notebook in which she wrote down some of his remarks. In 1994, a federal court jury in San Francisco cleared her of libel, even though it decided she made up two quotations. The jury found that the quotations were false and one potentially libelous, but that Masson failed to prove she acted deliberately or recklessly.A year later, to a new round of skepticism, Malcolm announced that she had found the missing notebook while playing with her granddaughter.“I don’t believe it,” Masson said at the time. “This is the adult version of ‘The dog ate my homework.’ Except in this case, the dog is regurgitating the notes after 12 years.”Malcolm’s honors included a PEN award for biography in 2008 for “Two Lives: Gertrude and Alice” and a nomination in 2014 from the National Book Critics Circle for “Forty-One False Starts.” In 1999, the Modern Library ranked “The Journalist and the Murderer,” which McGinniss would allege was filled with “omissions, distortions and outright misstatements of fact,” No. 97 on its list of the 100 best nonfiction releases of the 20th century.Her other books, most of them edited by her second husband, Gardner Botsford, included “The Silent Woman: Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes,” in part a critique of biography and “the charade of evenhandedness,” and “Psychoanalysis: The Impossible Profession.” Malcolm, ironically, was the daughter of a psychiatrist (her mother was a lawyer), and would liken journalists and analysts as experts on “the small, unregarded motions of life.”She was born Jana Wienerová in 1934 and emigrated with her family to the U.S. five years later, after the Nazis annexed Czechoslovakia. Her parents changed the family name to Winn.At the University of Michigan, she met her first husband, Donald Malcolm, later a writer for The New Republic and The New Yorker. After marrying in 1959, Janet Malcolm moved east and published occasional film criticism in The New Republic and a poem in The New Yorker, but otherwise dedicated several years to raising her daughter.Donald Malcolm died in 1975. Botsford died in 2004.Her breakthrough came in 1966 when she wrote a piece on children’s books for The New Yorker that so impressed editor William Shawn he eventually gave her a column — about furniture. She soon expanded her subject matter and evolved in how she approached it.“When I first started doing long fact pieces, as they were called at The New Yorker, I modeled my ‘I’ on the stock, civilized, and humane figure that was The New Yorker ‘I,’ but as I went along, I began to tinker with her and make changes in her personality,” she told the Paris Review in 2011.“Yes, I gave her flaws and vanities and, perhaps most significantly, strong opinions. I had her take sides. I was influenced by this thing that was in the air called deconstruction,” she added. “The idea I took from it was precisely the idea that there is no such thing as a dispassionate observer, that every narrative is inflected by the narrator’s bias.”In a New Yorker piece on the magazine Artforum, she interviewed the historian and Artforum contributor Rosalind Krauss and turned her subject’s precisely furnished apartment into a most discerning character, writing: “No one can leave this loft without feeling a little rebuked: one’s own house suddenly seems cluttered, inchoate, banal.”In the book “Iphigenia in Forest Hills,” Malcolm’s account of a murder trial in New York City, she meets with the defense attorney after the verdict and agrees with his lament that the press had taken the prosecution’s side.“Journalism is an enterprise of reassurance,” she wrote. “We do not wring our hands or rend our clothes over the senseless crimes and disasters that give us our subject. We explain and blame. We are connoisseurs of certainty. ‘Hey, we got the killer. Don’t worry. You can go to the playground. Nothing is going to happen.’”