The Night the Sky Caught Fire

Command and ControlPBS aired a documentary based on the book Command & Control by Eric Schlosser. Scary history, to say the least. A missile silo in Damascus Arkansas exploded, after a wrench socket fell and ruptured the fuel tank on the rocket. Denials preceded the near detonation of the most massive H Bomb in the arsenal. They didn’t even know where the warhead was, and wouldn’t even confirm the warhead existed. People died, and they wouldn’t say, even to the authorities wondering if people should evacuate. In another earlier incident an H Bomb was accidentally dropped on Goldsboro NC, from a B52 that broke up in mid air. The bomb hit the ground and sent a detonation signal. A simple on/off switch in the off position prevented it from blowing up. It passed the other four safeguards. Today, the silos are in need of repair that will cost billions. How safe are the missiles now? Who knows for sure?

 

Carol Burnett Wins Grammy

grammy-winners

Congrats to Carol Burnett for winning the Grammy in the best Spoken Word album category for IN SUCH GOOD COMPANYCarol Burnett is widely recognized for her work on stage and screen, most notably The Carol Burnett Show, which was named in 2007 by Time magazine as one of “100 Best Television Shows of All Time.” A highly acclaimed actress for her comedic and dramatic roles on television, film, and Broadway, Burnett has been honored with twelve People’s Choice Awards, eight Golden Globes, six Emmy Awards, the Horatio Alger Award, the Peabody Award, and the Ace Award. She has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, is a Kennedy Center honoree, and has been inducted into the Television Hall of Fame. She is also a New York Times bestselling author.

We also recommend the new young novelist Catherine Ryan Howard, who scored well with accolades for her first novel DISTRESS SIGNALS, a suspense set on a cruise ship. And just for fun, with the upcoming Oscar Show, a throwback full cast album OSCAR’S HIJACK is a mystery with satire recommended by Audiofile and produced by Blackstone.  

 

Ray & Joan by Lisa Napoli

ray-and-joanRay & Joan is a quintessentially American tale of corporate intrigue and private passion: a struggling Mad Men–era salesman with a vision for a fast-food franchise that would become one of the world’s most enduring brands and a beautiful woman willing to risk her marriage and her reputation to promote controversial causes that touched her deeply. Ray Kroc was peddling franchises around the country for a fledgling hamburger stand in the 1950s—McDonald’s, it was called—when he entered a St. Paul supper club and encountered a beautiful young piano player who would change his life forever. The attraction between Ray and Joan was instantaneous and instantly problematic. Yet even the fact that both were married to other people couldn’t derail their roller coaster of a romance. To the outside world, Ray and Joan were happy, enormously rich, and giving. But privately, Joan was growing troubled over Ray’s temper and dark secret, something she was reluctant to publicly reveal. Those close to them compared their relationship to that of Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. And yet, this volatility paved the way for Joan’s transformation into one of the greatest philanthropists of our time. A force in the peace movement, she produced activist films, books, and music and ultimately gave away billions of dollars, including landmark gifts to the Salvation Army and NPR. Together, the two stories form a compelling portrait of the twentieth century: a story of big business, big love, big betrayal, and ultimately big giving by Joan.

The audiobook version is narrated by the author, Lisa Napoli.

jenn-morris

Jenn Morris is a voiceover talent. Would you like her advice on reading for a living? Would you like to try it yourself, first? See About at this new blog for details.