News: April 2008 Archives

Rumsfeld to pen memoir for no profit

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NEW YORK (AP) — Donald H. Rumsfeld, the powerful former defense secretary and architect of the Iraq War, is working on a memoir to be published by Penguin Group (USA) in 2010.

Books by such former Bush administration officials as treasury secretary Paul O’Neill and CIA director George Tenet have come out, but Rumsfeld’s take is from the highest level so far.

He will receive no advance for the currently untitled book, only money for expenses. Profits will be donated to a foundation he started, whose projects include grants to ‘‘promising young individuals’’ interested in public service.

Dear Miss Moneypenny

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LONDON — It turns out that James Bond creator Ian Fleming got a little help from an unexpected source — a real life Miss Moneypenny to whom he turned for advice on plot points and character development.

A series of letters between Fleming and Jean Frampton, a typist-turned-adviser, was sold to an anonymous private collector Friday for more than $28,000, far more than had been expected.

The novelist and the typist never met, but over time she became a trusted aide to Fleming, who was working in London as a newspaper editor in the 1950s when he dreamed up Agent 007.

Ian Fleming
Ian Fleming

Congratulations to Chicago author Dwight Okita, who you might remember from a March 19 posting on this blog. Okita was one of 10 finalists in's Breakthough Novel contest, in which the public voted for the winner.

Dwight Okita

Okita didn't win for his book, The Prospect of My Arrival, but he did get enough votes to make the Top 3, who were all flown to New York for the awards ceremony. The winner was Bill Loehfelm, for his book, Fresh Kills, about an estranged son struggling to find his father's killer and make peace with the past.

Here's a note Okita sent out to his supporters last night:

Hi all,

As some of you know, I got the exciting phone call from Amazon telling me that I had made it to the Top 3 in the novel contest! They flew us to New York last weekend for the awards ceremony. Though I didn't win the publishing deal, I made many great connections in the business and hope to find a happy ending to my novel yet. Thanks to everyone for their support of my novel. More to come later.


And here is what Publisher's Weekly had to say about Okita's book:

In Chicago of 2025, the experimental Pre-Born Project at the Infinity Medical Center has inserted the consciousness of a fetus into the unoccupied body of a 30-year-old man, who will visit seven Referrals before deciding whether he chooses to be born. In lesser hands, this odd premise might have veered into political diatribe or slapstick. Instead, the protagonist, called Prospect, takes the reader on an engrossing and moving journey into the meaning of life, filled with fresh observations and memorable characters. Addressing the reader with a voice that skillfully blends innocence and wisdom, this latter-day Candide discovers unexpected connections among his Referrals and lands in jeopardy that keeps the pages turning until its satisfying and touching conclusion. The reader will find many insights and turns of phrase (curtains that "move like jellyfish in the summer breeze") to savor along the way.

Sharon's youngest son to pen memoir

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NEW YORK (AP) — The youngest son of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is writing a book about his father. Gilad Sharon’s memoir, Sharon: A Leader and a Father, is tentatively scheduled to come out in 2010.

‘‘Drawing from his father’s extensive archives, a remarkable cache of private papers and correspondence to which only he has access, Sharon provides a candid look at his father’s political legacy, surveying more than thirty years of leadership on a global stage,’’ publisher HarperCollins said Monday in a statement.

According to HarperCollins, Gilad Sharon will offer ‘‘memorable portraits’’ of President Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and other leaders.

Ariel Sharon turned 80 in February, more than two years after he was rendered comatose by a stroke while serving in Israel’s top job. Sharon made his name as a daring and often insubordinate army officer, before turning to politics in the 1970s and becoming a hawkish lawmaker in the hardline Likud Party and one of the most enthusiastic supporters of the Israeli settlement movement.

In a dramatic change of direction, he pulled all of Israel’s settlers and soldiers out of the Gaza Strip in 2005 while he was prime minister.

Sharon’s eldest son, Omri, 43, recently received a seven-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to illegal fundraising for his father’s 1999 successful election campaign to win the leadership of Likud. The two brothers oversaw parts of the campaign and fundraising.

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This page is a archive of entries in the News category from April 2008.

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