Former NCIS (Naval Criminal Investigative Service) special agent and Homeland Security executive Mark Fallon discusses Unjustifiable Means: The Inside Story of How the CIA, Pentagon, and US Government Conspired to Torture. Hear about the decision to implement “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques,” and the backchannels and deception employed to legalize these methods and hide them from the public’s view. Pulitzer prize-winning reporter Bill Dedman, co-author of Empty Mansions, will introduce Mark Fallon.
An international security consultant, Mark Fallon spent more than 30 years as a special agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), counterintelligence officer, counterterrorism operative, undercover agent, asset handler and law enforcement specialist. A senior ranking member of the Department of Homeland Security under the Bush administration, he has been involved in some of the most significant counterterrorism operations in US history. He has earned numerous honors and awards for his service.
Westport author and tech expert David Pogue returns with his new book Pogue’s Basics: Money: Essential Tips and Shortcuts (That No One Bothers to Tell You) About Beating the System on December 10, 2016.
Author Eric Burns discusses his new book, Someone to Watch Over Me: A Portrait of Eleanor Roosevelt and the Tortured Father Who Shaped Her Life. Eleanor Roosevelt is viewed as a pioneering women in American history. But she was also enigmatic and lonely. Her loveless marriage with FDR was no secret, and she had a cold relationship with most of her family. Yet she was a warm person, beloved by friends, and her humanitarian work still influences the world today. But who shaped Eleanor? It was the most unlikely of figures: her father Elliott, a lost spirit with a bittersweet story.
Elliott was the brother of Theodore Roosevelt, and he was as winsome and charming as Theodore was blustery and competitive. Though the two maintained a healthy rivalry in their youth, Elliott would eventually succumb to alcoholism and would be exiled to the Virginia countryside. But he kept up a close correspondence with his daughter, Eleanor, who treasured his letters and would read them nightly for her entire life for guidance, inspiration and love.
Eric Burns is a former correspondent for NBC News and the TODAY Show. For ten years he was the host of the top-rated “Fox News Watch,” and he has won an Emmy for media criticism. He is the author of The Golden Lad: The Haunting Story of Quentin and Theodore Roosevelt, 1920: The Year that Made the Decade Roar, a Kirkus "Best Book of the Year," Infamous Scribblers, The Spirits of America and The Smoke of the Gods, and the latter two were named “Best of the Best” by the American Library Association.
Award-winning journalist Bianca Bosker discusses her book Cork Dork: A Wine-Fueled Adventure Among the Obsessive Sommeliers, Big Bottle Hunters, and Rogue Scientists Who Taught Me to Live for Taste. The book chronicles a year and a half long adventure that takes the reader inside elite tasting groups, exclusive New York City restaurants, a California winery that manipulates the flavor of its bottles with ingredients like “Mega Purple,” and even a neuroscientist’s fMRI machine as Bosker attempts to answer the most nagging question of all: what’s the big deal about wine?
The evening will also include a wine tasting exercise.
"Readers will certainly come away from the book knowing more about wine and likely eager to explore it further, but even those less inclined to imbibe will be intrigued by Bosker's insights into the nature of smell and taste and the ways training and attention can increase one's pleasure in them."—starred Kirkus Review
Bianca Bosker is an award-winning journalist who has written about food, wine, architecture, and technology for The New Yorker online, The Atlantic, T: The New York Times Style Magazine, Food & Wine, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian and The New Republic. The former executive tech editor of The Huffington Post, she is the author of the critically-acclaimed book Original Copies: Architectural Mimicry in Contemporary China. She lives in New York City.
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Historian,Elizabeth Kostova, discusses her new novel The Shadow Land. A young American woman, Alexandra Boyd, has traveled to Sofia, Bulgaria, hoping that life abroad will salve the wounds left by the loss of her beloved brother. Soon after arriving in this elegant East European city, however, she helps an elderly couple into a taxi—and realizes too late that she has accidentally kept one of their bags. Inside she finds an ornately carved wooden box engraved with a name: Stoyan Lazarov. Raising the hinged lid, she discovers that she is holding an urn filled with human ashes. So beings this novel that explores the power of stories, the pull of the past, and the hope and meaning that can sometimes be found in the aftermath of loss.
Elizabeth Kostova is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Historian, for which she won the 2006 Book Sense Award for Best Adult Fiction and the 2005 Quill Award for Debut Author of the Year, and The Swan Thieves. She graduated from Yale and holds an MFA from the University of Michigan, where she won the Hopwood Award for Novel-in-Progress.
Award-winning author and New Yorker contributor Paul La Farge discusses The NIght Ocean, his new novel about secrets and scandals, psychiatry and pulp fiction, which was inspired by the lives of H.P. Lovecraft and his circle. The Night Ocean follows the lives of some extraordinary people:
Lovecraft, an influential American horror writer of the 20th century, whose stories continue to win new acolytes, even as his racist views provoke new critics; Barlow, a seminal scholar of Mexican culture who killed himself after being blackmailed for his homosexuality (and who collaborated with Lovecraft on the story "The Night Ocean"); his student, future Beat writer William S. Burroughs; and L.C. Spinks, a kindly Canadian appliance salesman and science-fiction fan—the only person who knows the origins of The Erotonomicon, purported to be the intimate diary of Lovecraft himself.
“The breadth of La Farge’s research and the specificity of his historical details are impressive: we enter the worlds of science-fiction fandom, internet trolls, literary hoaxes, and ancient Mexican civilizations as [he] deftly weaves in famous figures like H.P Lovecraft, Isaac Asimov, and William S. Burroughs. Only a virtuoso could pull off a story so intricately plotted and so full of big ideas about morality and truth…La Farge is this virtuoso, folding stories inside stories with ease…. An effortlessly memorable novel.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Magnificent... An impossible, irresistible novel, a love letter to the unlovable that speaks the unspeakable.” — Lev Grossman, author of the Magicians trilogy
Paul La Farge is the author of four novels: The Night Ocean, The Artist of the Missing, Haussmann, or the Distinction and Luminous Airplanes; and a book of imaginary dreams, The Facts of Winter. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Bard Fiction Prize, and fellowships from the New York Foundation for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. He was a fellow at the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library in 2013-14.