Chicago connection: March 2008 Archives

Book deal for Massachusetts governor

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Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, his state’s first black governor and a close ally of presidential candidate Barack Obama, is writing a memoir that will be published by Broadway Books in 2010.

Gov. Deval Patrick

The deal is worth $1.35 million and nine publishers competed for the book, currently untitled, according to agent Todd Shuster of the Zachary Shuster Harmsworth Literary Agency. Patrick will donate some of his royalties to A Better Chance, a nonprofit educational organization that helped Patrick attend the Milton Academy, south of Boston.

‘‘Drawing upon his extraordinary journey from Chicago’s Wabash Avenue to the Massachusetts State House on Boston’s fabled Beacon Hill, Gov. Patrick will offer in his book a series of lessons and insights on life and leadership,’’ according to a statement released Friday by Broadway Books, an imprint of Random House, Inc.

‘‘Among the subjects he will address are self-truth, grace, faith, courage, and compassion, as well as the importance of forgiveness, and embracing optimism and hope to make good outcomes possible.’’

Obama, a black Illinois senator who wrote Dreams From My Father and Audacity of Hope, is similar to Patrick in several ways: Both are Democrats who graduated from Harvard Law School, have Chicago ties and ended up seeking elective office on the strength of their backgrounds.

Patrick, 51, was out of state last week when his casino gambling plan, a cornerstone of his economic program, went down to defeat, leading to speculations about his whereabouts: He was in New York, shopping his book.

Patrick briefly became an issue in the presidential campaign when it was discovered that Obama had been using some of his lines, saying that while words matter, actions mean more, leading Obama’s rival, Sen. Hillary Clinton, to call him the candidate of ‘‘change you can Xerox.’’

Patrick, one of Obama’s strongest supporters, dismissed the charges as ‘‘sort of a tempest in a teapot.’’



A gossipy book by two ex-concierges at Chicago’s luxurious Four Seasons Hotel has been pulled by Three Rivers Press because the authors were legally banned from writing about their experiences.

‘‘Despite previous and repeated inquiries made by Three Rivers Press, we recently learned that Abigail Hart and Nancy Callahan did not disclose that they had signed confidentiality agreements with their former employer, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts,’’ publicist Katie Wainwright told The Associated
Press on Thursday.

The book, Great Reservations: Two Concierges Dish About Outrageous Requests, Celebrity Encounters, and Guests Behaving Badly at a Luxury Hotel, had been scheduled for a June release. It featured anecdotes on such celebrities as Madonna (who had a ‘‘phobialike aversion’’ to air conditioning) and Sir Anthony Hopkins (who asked that he simply be called ‘‘Tony’’).

Although advance copies had been sent to the media, the book had not yet been shipped to stores and a print run had not been determined, Wainwright said.

Three Rivers Press is an imprint of Random House, Inc., which is owned by Bertelsmann AG.


Note: Here's what the book would have looked like had it made it to store shelves:

Great Reservations

Literary Idol

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Chicago author Dwight Okita is one of 10 finalists in an "American Idol"-type competition for the literary set — and you can help him win by voting online. Okita's book, Prospect of My Arrival, is a science fiction story set in Chicago in the near future: 2025.

Dwight Okita

There were nearly 5,000 submissions for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, which is sponsored by, Penguin Group (USA) and HP.

Voters can download, read, rate and/or review excerpts of all the finalists' work by logging on to Voting ends March 31 and the winner will be unveiled in New York on April 7. The finalist with the most votes wins a publishing contract worth $25,000.

Check out Okita's Web site for more information about the author and the contest.

Medill prof takes a look at the news biz

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Author Michele Weldon, an assistant professor at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism takes a fresh look at the changing face of newspapers in her latest book, Everyman News: The Changing American Front Page (University of Missouri Press, 280 pages, $39.95).

You might remember Weldon from a few years ago when she appeared on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," with her 1999 memoir, I Closed My Eyes: Revelations of a Battered Woman.

Michele Weldon
Michele Weldon at work. (Keith Hale~Sun-Times)

Here's a review of Everyman News:

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Chicago connection category from March 2008.

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