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John Darnton is an award-winning journalist and best-selling novelist. He worked for forty years for The New York Times as a reporter, foreign correspondent and editor. He won two George Polk Awards and the Pulitzer Prize. He has written five novels: Neanderthal, The Experiment (both on the NYTimes best-seller list), Mind Catcher, The Darwin Conspiracy and Black and White and Dead All Over.

Coming from Alfred A. Knopf in mid-March, a memoir

Almost a Family

John was eleven months old when his father, Barney Darnton-a war correspondent for The New York Times-was killed in WWII, but his absence left a more profound imprint on the family than any living father could have. John's mother-a well-known Times reporter and editor-tried to keep alive the dream of raising her two sons in ideal surroundings. When that proved impossible, she collapsed emotionally and physically, becoming financially destitute.  But along the way she created a myth of the father-hero who gave his life for his family, country and the fourth estate, so that John followed his footsteps into the same newsroom. Decades after his father's death, John and his brother-the historian Robert Darnton-began delving into the past to uncover secrets about their parents. To discover who the real-life Barney Darnton was - and in part who he himself is - John recreates turn-of-the-century farmland in Michigan, the blowsy Jazz Age in Greenwich Village, the lives of the hard-drinking correspondents in the Pacific, and the fearful loneliness of the McCarthy years in Washington DC. He ends on a beach in Papua New Guinea, learning about his father's last moments from an aged villager who never forgot what he saw sixty-five years ago.
Intensely moving, and vividly descriptive of America over generations, Almost a Family describes a family in which love and devotion were built on an often dazzling framework of deception.  

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