paper trail

Tonight: Colson Whitehead in conversation with Kevin Young

Kevin Young. Photo: Melanie Dunea

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has obtained and released more than 11 million private financial records that detail the ways the rich use opaque and secretive offshore systems and other loopholes to hide billions of dollars from tax authorities. Called the Pandora Papers, the ICIJ project has been shared with a number of news organizations, some of which are joining in the investigation. According to the Washington Post, “the Pandora Papers allow for the most comprehensive accounting to date of a parallel financial universe whose corrosive effects can span generations—draining significant sums from government treasuries, worsening wealth disparities, and shielding the riches of those who cheat and steal while impeding authorities and victims in their efforts to find or recover hidden assets.”

The Society of Authors has launched #TranslatorsOnTheCover, an open letter that calls on every writer to request that their translators be credited on book covers. So far, the letter has been signed by more than a hundred authors, including Laura van den Berg, Tracy Chevalier, Jorie Graham, Lauren Groff, Mark Haddon, John Keene, Diana Khoi Nguyen, Katie Kitamura, Alexandra Kleeman, Chris Kraus, R.O. Kwon, Carlos Labbé, Jhumpa Lahiri, Valeria Luiselli, Karan Mahajan, Rebecca Makkai, Sigrid Nunez, J.R. Patterson, Philip Pullman, Monique Truong, and Sarah Waters.

Random House’s Crown imprint has bought the US rights to Tina Brown’s next book, The Palace Papers: Inside the House of Windsor—the Truth and the Turmoil. The book, which will be released in April 2022, will describe how “the monarchy reinvented itself after the traumatic years when Diana’s blazing celebrity ripped through the House of Windsor like a comet.”

Disruptions in the supply chain and shortages of workers is starting to cause delays in printing, and some publishers—realizing that this could be “the beginning of the snowball going down the hill”—are deciding to postpone books.

A September 26 New York Times article raised questions about the leadership team at the digital-journalism and -media start-up Ozy. The article “detailed an episode in which a top executive at Ozy appeared to have impersonated a YouTube executive during a conference call with Goldman Sachs bankers in February while the company was trying to raise $40 million.” On Friday, Ozy, led by former MSNBC anchor Carlos Watson and once a “darling of Silicon Valley,” told its employees that the board had voted to shut the company down. But this morning, Watson appeared on CNBC and announced that Ozy will reopen, and that “this will be our Lazarus moment.”

Readings: Tonight in Brooklyn at 6pm, at the brand-new bookstore The Word Is Change, Silvia Federici, Susana Draper, and Liz Mason-Deese will discuss an “international movement of Black, Indigenous, popular, and mestiza women’s organizations fighting against violence—interpersonal, state sanctioned, and economic.” Tonight in Brooklyn at 7pm, Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Colson Whitehead and poet-essayist Kevin Young will read from and discuss their new books, Harlem Shuffle and Stones.