American Nerd’s Benjamin Nugent Kicks Off the @Macaulay Author Series with his Debut Novel on February 25

New York, NY–Noted writers Patricia Volk, Ann Kirschner, Victor Navasky and Benjamin Nugent will appear in the spring 2013 edition of the @Macaulay Author Series, the popular new Upper West Side literary series held in the landmark 1904 building of CUNY’s Macaulay Honors College.  Steps from Lincoln Center, @Macaulay was designed to bring booklovers in contact with acclaimed writers and spark lively conversations in a neighborhood that has itself nurtured countless authors. The monthly programs, dedicated to outstanding writing and spirited intellectual exchange, are free and open to the public.  All events are held at Macaulay, 35 West 67th Street between Central Park West and Columbus.  Reservations are required: 212-729-2910 or online at:

Benjamin Nugent, Good Kids

February 25, 2013
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

“Benjamin Nugent’s writing is alive with intelligence, authenticity and angst. Fans of Jonathan Franzen, you just may have found your new favorite writer.” –CURTIS SITTENFELD, author of Prep

Already acclaimed for his smart and frighteningly thorough American Nerd: A History of My People (“entertaining and intelligent,” A.J. Jacobs), Benjamin Nugent gets the spring series underway with a selection from his new novel, Good Kids, his first.  Just as he won a following for his inventive blend of memoir and reportage about nerds and their history, his fiction debut will attract even more fans with its probes of infidelity, romance and friendship.  What happens when two high school classmates catch sight of a too-close-for comfort parental tryst, and how does it shadow their next ten years?  The reading will be followed by a book signing and reception.

Ann Kirschner, Lady at the O.K. Corral: The True Story of Josephine Marcus Earp

March 13, 2013
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

An “admiring and vivacious biography…Kirschner’s fascinating profile captures the restless spirit of the frontier.” —Publishers Weekly

Bordellos, saloons and the gambling dens of the Wild West form the backdrop to Lady at the O.K. Corral: the True Story of Josephine Marcus Earp, by the highly praised author and historian Ann Kirschner, who also happens to be Macaulay Honor College’s dynamic Dean.  Through scholarly sleuthing, Kirschner (Sala’s Gift: My Mother’s Holocaust Story) reveals a tale missing from the history books, that of “Josie” Marcus Earp, for half a century the partner and paramour of Tombstone, Arizona’s, legendary sheriff, Wyatt Earp. Tracing Josephine’s odyssey from rebellious daughter of Jewish immigrants to her little-known involvement with the notorious shootout at the O.K. Corral and far beyond, Kirschner follows the couple on desert adventures, forays into the Alaskan goldfields, and reckless, glamorous lives during the waning days of the frontier.  This reading, book signing and reception are the New York City launch event for the book and its author.

Victor S. Navasky, The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring Power

April 17, 2013
7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

“Navasky is that most valuable of journalists and subversives…who loves his craft too much to see it as anything but a calling.”–BILL MOYERS

Publisher emeritus of The Nation, its longtime editor, and chairman of the Columbia Journalism Review, the journalist and author Victor Navasky knows just how incendiary cartoons can be. At the heart of his new book, The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring Power, is unforgettable work by such masters of the genre as Honore Daumier, Thomas Nast, George Grosz, David Levine, Ralph Steadman, Edward Sorel, Art Spiegelman and Herblock. In this impassioned inquiry, the National Book Award winner deftly addresses what it takes to create such profound provocations.  Navasky’s books include Naming Names, the definitive account of the Hollywood blacklists, Kennedy Justice, and, with Christopher Cerf, Mission Accomplished (or How We Won the War in Iraq).

Patricia Volk, Shocked: My Mother, Schiaparelli and Me

May 8, 2013
7:00-9:00 p.m.

“This daring and irresistible catalog of the secrets of women cements Volk’s reputation as one of our most amusing writers. What in academic circles might be called ‘the construction of gender is here brought vividly and hilariously to life. If God is in the details, then this is one of the godliest books I’ve read in ages, because the details are priceless”–PHILLIP LOPATE

From the best-selling author of Stuffed: Adventures of a Restaurant Family, comes a memoir, written with charm and panache, that juxtaposes two lives—the iconoclastic Italian fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli and the author’s mother –to explore how a girl fashions herself into a woman. Richly illustrated, Shocked moves seamlessly between the Volk family’s Manhattan and Florida and Schiaparelli’s astonishing life in Paris, Rome and New York. Stacy Schiff, author of Cleopatra: A Life, calls Volk’s magical triple portrait “as charming and wise as her larger-than-life mother.” The recipient of Guggenheim and Yaddo fellowships, Volk has contributed to The New York Times, The Atlantic, and The New Yorker, and has written three works of fiction.

The monthly evening series is hosted at Macaulay Honors College, conveniently located at 35 West 67th Street, between Central Park and Lincoln Center. The programs will take place in the Lecture Hall and adjacent Reading Room.  The series is sponsored by Friends of Macaulay.

Reservations online:

About Macaulay Honors College

Macaulay Honors College at The City University of New York offers an exceptional academic and co-curricular environment for the best and brightest students, who come from all parts of New York and around the world. Macaulay students enroll in one of eight CUNY senior colleges (Baruch, Brooklyn, City, Hunter, John Jay, Lehman, Queens and Staten Island). Through the unique Macaulay advising program, each student develops a coordinated, individualized academic program that includes research, global learning, graduate and professional mentoring, community engagement, and close faculty-student collaboration. Selected for their top high school records and leadership potential, every Macaulay student receives a full-tuition scholarship, a laptop and technology support, a $7,500 study grant to pursue global learning and service opportunities, and a Cultural Passport that provides access to museums, libraries, and other treasures around New York City. For more information about Macaulay Honors College, visit our website at:

About Friends of Macaulay

Friends of Macaulay is a community of committed individuals who value the power of public higher education for New York’s highest achieving students. With support of Macaulay’s annual fund, Friends of Macaulay invest in our next generation of leaders.

Press Contact: Grace Rapkin
Director of Marketing and Communications
Macaulay Honors College
@Macaulay Author Series

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