THE LATEST DEVELOPMENTS IN THE JANUARY 6TH ATTACK ON THE U.S. CAPITOL:
DELVIN BARRETT is a reporter with the Washington Post, where he writes about the FBI and the Justice Department. He joins us to talk about charges filed against long-time Proud Boy leader Enrique Tarrio in the January 6 insurrection. Barrett was also part of a team that won a Pulitzer Prize in 2018 for National Reporting, for coverage of Russian interference in the US election. In 2017, he was a co-finalist for both the Pulitzer for Feature Writing and the Pulitzer for International Reporting. He has covered federal law enforcement for more than 20 years, and has worked at the Wall Street Journal, the Associated Press, and the New York Post.
BRAD MELTZER, #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR AND TV SHOW CREATOR
#1 New York Times bestselling author BRAD MELTZER celebrates the twenty-fifth anniversary of his publishing debut and returns with two of the most iconic characters in recent fiction, in THE LIGHTNING ROD.
Over the course of his 25-year career, Meltzer has become known for meticulous research that has taken readers everywhere from the secret tunnels below the White House to the underground city below Disney World. In The Lightning Rod, Meltzer explores something few Americans know anything about: the dozen top-secret warehouses the U.S. government has all across the country to prepare for disasters such as chemical attacks, biological warfare, and pandemics.
Officially, it’s known as the Strategic National Stockpile—the government’s plan for how to deal with the worst large-scale attacks and biological threats like COVID. It consists of a dozen undisclosed warehouses, carefully hidden across the country. Each one is filled with vaccines for smallpox, SARS, Hanta virus, you name it. Had COVID-19 vaccines existed prior to the pandemic, it would have been stored in these facilities and, in fact, many of the early COVID ventilators came from the Stockpile.
For The Lightning Rod, Meltzer interviewed key individuals and agencies involved in the Stockpile, including people at the CDC and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response. Insights Melter can discuss with your audience including:
- Why the government was, as one official told Meltzer,“Caught with our pants down” on COVID
- Why the Stockpile is important and how it has been poorly managed and underfunded for years
- How oversight for the Stockpile moved from the CDC to HHS and private companies right before the pandemic hit – with dire consequences
- Why these facilities are vital for Americans’ health and safety today and in the future.
Meltzer is the rare author who successfully works in multiple genres, for multiple audiences with bestselling thrillers, nonfiction works, children’s books, audiobooks, comic books, and television shows to his credit with more than 11 million copies books sold. He’s a #1 New York Times bestseller, an Emmy nominee, and a favorite author of two U.S. presidents. The Hollywood Reporter put him on their list of the 25 Most Powerful Authors, and he’s been asked to serve as a member of the America250 Council, to celebrate the upcoming 250th birthday of the country.
BRAD MELTZER is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twelve previous thrillers, including The Inner Circle, The Book of Fate, and The Escape Artist, with more than 11 million copies sold. He is also the host of the television shows Brad Meltzer’s Lost History and Brad Meltzer’s Decoded on the History Channel. In addition, he is the author of the nonfiction bestsellers The First Conspiracy and The Lincoln Conspiracy, as well as the blockbuster children’s history book series Ordinary People Change the World. A PBS KIDS TV show based on his books, Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum, now has 28 million viewers, and was recently nominated for multiple Emmys and TCA Awards. Meltzer has written bestselling comic books, as well, including Superman, Batman, and Spider-Man titles. The Hollywood Reporter put him on their list of the 25 Most Powerful Authors, and he’s been asked to serve as a member of the America250 Council, to celebrate the upcoming 250th birthday of the country. He lives in Florida with his wife and three children.
ON HIS BOOKS BEING BANNED
Brad’s books on Rosa Parks and Dr. King were banned in the York, PA school district, so he took a deep dive into the history of book banning – and why it’s so similar to today. Just a few of his quick thoughts:
“As the midterm elections approach, it’s obviously only going to get worse. As usual. Soon after Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin was published in 1852, it became what many believe to be the first book in the United States to be banned on a national level. Confederates didn’t like its pro-abolitionist arguments, and they really hated that it encouraged people to debate and condemn slavery. Simply put: the book terrified them, threatening their way of life.
It’s the same decade after decade, century after century, whether it’s King Lear or Huckleberry Finn.
Every one of these book bans was motivated by fear—and a need for power and control. It’s not surprising to find censorship when people’s grip on power is threatened.
So how do we respond to this current wave of censorship? We follow the lessons of Dr. King and Rosa Parks: We fight back. Throughout history, if you’re on the side of banning art, you eventually will lose. And you want to know why? Because fear mongering has no chance against the most powerful thing in the universe: an idea. That’s what books are—compilations of ideas. And nothing can stop an idea.
If you’re cheering as books are pulled from the library, you’re on the wrong side of history.”
THE LIGHTNING ROD: A ZIG & NOLA NOVEL (ESCAPE ARTIST, 2), by Brad Meltzer (Author)
Publisher : William Morrow (March 8, 2022)
“Nola is the most accomplished kicker of ass since The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.” —A. J. Finn
Zig and Nola are back—in the hugely entertaining, highly anticipated follow-up to Brad Meltzer’s #1 New York Times bestselling thriller The Escape Artist.
What’s the one secret no one knows about you?
Archie Mint has a secret. He’s led a charmed life—he’s got a beautiful wife, two impressive kids, and a successful military career. But when he’s killed while trying to stop a robbery in his own home, his family is shattered—and then shocked when the other shoe drops. Mint’s been hiding criminal secrets none of them could have imagined.
While working on Mint’s body before his funeral, mortician “Zig” Zigarowski discovers something he was never meant to see. That telling detail leads him to Mint’s former top secret military unit and his connection to artist Nola Brown. Two years ago, Nola saved Zig’s life—so he knows better than most that she’s as volatile and dangerous as a bolt of lightning.
Following Nola’s trail, he uncovers one of the U.S. government’s most intensely guarded secrets—an undisclosed military facility that dates back to the Cold War and holds the key to something far more sinister: a hidden group willing to compromise the very safety and security of America itself.
Trouble always finds her…
She’s the lightning rod.