paper trail

Two new books from Ta-Nehisi Coates; PEN America reports on Trump's threats to free speech

President Barack Obama and Ta-Nehisi Coates. Photo: Pete Souza / White House

Ta-Nehisi Coates is working on two new books. We Were Eight Years in Power, which will be released in October, was developed from Coates’s many articles on Barack Obama for The Atlantic. Coates is also working on a work of fiction, which is still in progress. Both books will be published by One World.

Page Six reports that Colson Whitehead is working on a new book. “I am working on another depressing novel for the masses,” he said. “It takes place in Florida in the 1960s.”

James Patterson is working on a true crime book about Aaron Hernandez, the former NFL star who killed himself last week while awaiting sentencing for a murder conviction. “While his life was marred by controversy, he had incredible potential and undisputed talent,” Patterson said in a statement. “Along the way, his life spiraled out of control—and I felt compelled to ask: What went wrong?” The still-untitled book will be published by Little, Brown next year.

PEN America has released a report detailing all the ways that the Trump administration has threatened free speech in their first one hundred days in office. The group found “at least 76 instances in which President Trump and/or his Administration have undermined the work of the press.” The organization writes that these incidents are “harmful to our democracy and to our respect for the Constitution, and we all—whatever our political affiliation—must continue to stand up and say so.”

At Marie Claire, Kaitlin Menza profiles Emily Steel, the New York Times reporter whose exposé on Bill O’Reilly’s sexual harassment settlements forced the anchor out of Fox News. “She is petite, with a soft high-pitched voice,” Menza writes, “exactly the kind of woman that a man like Bill O'Reilly might underestimate.” New York magazine’s Gabe Sherman reports that the turmoil is not yet over at the company. Sherman writes that network co-president Bill Shine is concerned “about his future at the network” after James and Lachlan Murdoch denied his request that they “release a statement in support of him.” In response, Sean Hannity tweeted to Sherman that, if true, “that’s the total end of the FNC as we know it.”