Twilight Times Books
Press Release

 

July 03, 2009

For Immediate Release: not time sensitive

Exciting debut suspense from David Rothman

(Kingsport, TN -- July 03, 2009) -- Journalist pens novel inspired by political financial conflict of interest realities and dangers.

A well-regarded U.S. senator, once a Kennedy Administration cabinet member, held a $20,000 secret investment in a CIA-occupied building in Arlington, VA, across the Potomac River from Washington.

Now David Rothman, whose journalistic digging uncovered the hidden stake, is out with a suspense novel inspired by the apparent illegality. "The Solomon Scandals" also fictionalizes a deadly building collapse that killed 14 people.

Rothman's novel is a city-room tale as well, and discussing it he says: "Journalism is too important to be left just to the pros--however useful they can be.

"Citizen activists were a godsend when I was investigating the government office leasing program," said the author, based in Alexandria, Virginia. "I was a freelance reporter, and among my allies were housewives in the environmental movement. Boy, did they know their way around the local courthouses.

"So I'm delighted when news organizations encourage citizens to aid their investigations. In Florida, for example, retired engineers and accountants helped a Gannett newspaper determine why sewer hookups cost so much.

"We need all kinds of models out there--traditional investigative  journalism, the pure citizens kind and mixes of the two. The idea shouldn't be to replace pros with amateurs but rather to tap people's specialized knowledge. There's enough corruption to keep everyone busy."

Rothman's own inquiries into federal leasing practices led to stories on the NBC Nightly News and in the New Republic by James Polk, a Pulitzer Prize winner for Watergate reporting for the old Washington Star. Rothman  broke the news about the senator, the late Abraham Ribicoff (D-CT), via States News Service, no longer in operation. Ribicoff earlier had served as governor of Connecticut and as President John F. Kennedy's secretary of Health, Education and Welfare.

In Rothman's debut novel, an investigative journalist not only must deal with a President's past secret investment in a CIA-occupied building but also with a threatened collapse at the same complex.

"Vulture's Point, Sy's building, is fictitious just like Solomon himself. But the inspiration was the Skyline high-rise collapse in Northern Virginia in 1973 where 14 workers died in a construction accident. Today debates rage on about the causes of Skyline and who was responsible--I won't take sides. For Scandals, I relocated my building to a riverside location near a fictitious sewage plant and consulted with two construction experts to create a collapse risk while the high-rise was occupied.

"The  actual Skyline collapse didn't involve GSA, but in real life, under the Bush Administration, the agency made headlines by coming out against greater safety precautions in high-rises in the wake of 9/11."
(
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/08/washington/08codes.html  )


"Let's hope that under Obama the GSA will value life over property," Rothman said. "The all-too-common conflict between the two is a major theme of The Solomon Scandals. Another is the frequent clash in D.C. between friendship and duty. When it comes to corruption, the two themes can intertwine.
"And ideally, in real life, if suspicions arise, the media and well-intentioned private citizens can work together to get at the truth."

For more information visit   www.SolomonScandals.com  

What People Are Saying:  

"… Stone is the Cassandra of the D.C. press corps—his hunches mocked, his scoops unpublished until it’s too late. In the meantime, we get to relish his chatty first- person narrator spinning characterizations of D.C. with the same dark zeal Hammett held for Frisco or Chandler had for Los Angeles. "

— Ted Scheinman, Washington City Paper.


"…Scandals is set in yesterday's Washington, but it is about truths behind today's headlines—and about the troubled newspapers that publish the headlines. Like Boomsday and others of the best recent Washington novels, it amuses while broadening our understanding of how today’s government works—and doesn’t."

— James Fallows, author of Breaking the News  

"If only the cesspool of corruption Rothman plumbs so well in the past did not persist even today in Washington, where the first purpose of politics seems to remain the divvying up of spoils among secret cronies. "

— James Polk, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Watergate coverage for the Washington Star  

"David Rothman's bright, breezy, fast-paced, and funny novel shines a merciless spotlight on greed, skulduggery, and fraud within the government... Stone's fictional struggle to write and publish his exposé is more than a shadow of the truth."

— Bettina Gregory, former ABC News Correspondent.
 



 

The Solomon Scandals is available for order through your favorite local bookstore and online booksellers. Media review copies, book cover photo and author available for interview.

Media Contact:

Lida Quillen
Twilight Times Books
P. O. Box 3340
Kingsport, TN 37664
Ph: 423-323-0183

http://twilighttimesbooks.com/

 


 

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