48 Hours with William R. Forstchen
Sunday, February 10th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

William R. Forstchen is the New York Times bestselling author and holds a Ph.D. in history from Purdue University, with specializations in military history and the history of technology. He has made numerous appearances on Fox News, ABC, CBS and NBC as a recognized expert on Electro-Magnetic Pulse (EMP) and CPE events, with specializations in military history and the history of technology. He is an in-demand speaker for audiences such as NASA and STRATCOM. He is currently a faculty fellow and professor of history at Montreat College, near Asheville, North Carolina. 

The Lost Vintage with Ann Mah
Thursday, January 31st at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Ann Mah is a food and travel writer based in Paris and Washington, D.C. She is the author of two novels, The Lost Vintage and Kitchen Chinese; a food memoir, Mastering the Art of French Eating; and a cookbook, Instantly French. She contributes regularly to the New York Times Travel section and her articles have also appeared in Condé Nast Traveler, The Best American Travel Writing 2017, The New York Times Footsteps, Washingtonian magazine, Vogue.com, BonAppetit.com, Food52.com, TheKitchn.com, and other publications.  http://www.annmah.net/about/ 

Wildcard with Marie Lu
Thursday, December 13th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Marie Lu is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Young Elites series, as well as the blockbuster bestselling Legend series. She graduated from the University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry as an artist. Now a full-time writer, she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing games, and getting stuck in traffic. www.Marielubooks.com 

Under My Skin with Lisa Unger
Friday, November 30th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Lisa Unger is the New York Times and internationally bestselling, award-winning author of sixteen novels. Her new release Under My Skin is named one of the most anticipated and top thrillers of fall 2018 by BookBub, Bookish, Library Journal, Booklist, PopSugar and CrimeReads! https://lisaunger.com

VOX with Christina Dalcher
Monday, November 19th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Christina Dalcher is a linguist, novelist, and flash fiction writer from Somewhere in the American South. She has over 100 publishing credits in the UK, US, and Australia. Recognitions include second prize in the 2016 Bartleby Snopes Dialogue-Only Contest, the Bath Flash Award’s Short List (February 2017 and June 2017), and nominations for The Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, and Best Small Fictions. https://christinadalcher.com 

A River of Stars with Vanessa Hua
Thursday, November 15th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Vanessa Hua is a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle and author of a short story collection, Deceit and Other Possibilities. She received a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award, the Asian/Pacific Award for Literature, the San Francisco Foundation’s James D. Phelan Award, a Steinbeck Fellowship in Creative Writing, as well as honors from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Asian American Journalists’ Association. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, FRONTLINE/World, The Washington Post, ZYZZYVA, and elsewhere. http://www.vanessahua.com

The Dutch Wife with Ellen Keith
Thursday, November 8th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Winner of the HarperCollins/UBC Prize for Best New Fiction, Ellen Keith is a Canadian writer and a recent graduate of the University of British Columbia’s MFA program in creative writing. Her work has appeared in publications such as the New Quarterly, Globe and Mail. She currently lives in Amsterdam.  https://www.ellenkeith.ca

A Shadow Away with Joan K. Lacy
Monday, August 20th at 8:30pm ET/5:30pm PT

Joan K. Lacy is a weaver of words, ancient cultures, mysteries and adventures. Raised in the country outside San Diego, an adventurous spirit encouraged her to take every opportunity to explore all this fascinating world has to offer. Joan now combines her love for archaeology, history, and fantasy fiction with her active imagination to create a world filled with all sorts of magic and adventure. You won’t want to miss Alex Cort and his friends on their many adventures.  http://joanklacy.com

Mother of Invention with Caeli Wolfson Widger
Thursday, July 19th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Caeli Wolfson Widger is the author of the novel Real Happy Family. Her other work has appeared in numerous literary journals, the New York Times Magazine, and Amazon’s Day One and on NPR. Caeli lives with her husband and three children in Santa Monica, California, where she runs a recruiting firm focused on tech start-ups. www.caeliwidger.com 

A Dress the Color of the Sky with Jennifer Irwin
Thursday, June 14th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

A native New Yorker and captivating storyteller with a flair for embellishment, Jennifer Irwin currently resides in Los Angeles with two cats, a dog, and her boyfriend. After earning her BA in Cinema from Denison University, she worked in advertising and marketing raised three boys, and ultimately became a certified Pilates instructor. While she has written screenplays and short stories since her college days. http://jenniferirwinauthor.com 

Namkung’s These Violent Delights Depicts True to Life Ends

By Victoria Davis, staff writer & journalist

Just in the last couple months, the world of sports, Hollywood and popular news networks have exploded with sexual assault and harassment accusations. 83 women, according to USA Today, have come forward claiming sexual harassment from producer Harvey Weinstein. CBS fired veteran journalist Charlie Rose due to allegations of sexual misconduct and Olympic Gymnastics physician Larry Nassar has been sentenced to 40 to 175 years in prison after 156 female athletes spoke out about decades of enduring the doctor’s sexual abuse.

Some might say that the world has changed, that sexual predators are lurking on our doorsteps more than ever before. Victoria Namkung, author of These Violent Delights, believes the world has not become more dangerous, but that people are just more aware.

“Because of social media and all these new websites that weren’t around when I was growing up in the 80s, we have access to see more than we used to,” said Namkung. “We can see what children are missing, where sex offenders live in our area. If someone makes an accusation, it’s put on the internet almost right away.”

This newfound awareness, knowing that they are not alone, has helped to support women, and men, coming forward and sharing their stories. This, in turn, has given journalists and authors like Namkung the opportunity to share those stories with the world.

These Violent Delights was just published at the start of this month and has already received raving reviews on Goodreads, with over 60% being four or five stars. The book tells the story of three women who, while attending an all-girls private high school in Los Angeles, experience sexual advances from their married English teacher, Dr. Gregory Copeland. Caryn, Eva and Sasha are all from different graduating classes at Windemere and all had different encounters with Dr. Copeland. But when Caryn publishes an essay titled, “My Tenth-Grade Teacher Claims He Fell In Love With Me,” during her college internship at the Los Angeles Daily, the three women realize they have more in common than they thought. Caryn’s essay kick-starts an investigation and, with the help of esteemed reporter Jane March, the women begin the process of healing, finding justice and making peace with their everyday lives.

Namkung takes an interesting approach to this story, with each chapter narrating the first-person perspective of one of the four women. The first few chapters alternate between narrations from Caryn and Jane, but as Eva and Sasha enter the picture, the chapters become more diverse. This was an extraordinary choice of storytelling because it brings the reader into the heart and soul of each women. They are not just mothers, writers or victims. They are people with deeps hurts and pains. The varying first-person perspectives also helped distinguish what make each woman different and how each of their experiences with Copeland impacted them individually.

Having used her journalism skills to interview real victims and private school students and teachers for her book, Namkung creates an emotional journey that is real and raw. The accounts of Sasha and Eva specifically are very detailed, recalling instances of groping, intercourse and emotional abuse post-relationship from Copeland. However, this makes up only a portion of the story. These Violent Delights also covers Caryn’s feelings of estrangement from her family, Sasha’s Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Jane’s compensation for past mistakes and corruption within private schools and their board members.

Perhaps one of the most overpowering topics addressed in this book is the effects of severe mental disorders. The sociopathic and pedophilia state of mind is expressed, not through a man in a black hoodie hiding in the bushes and waiting to attack, but in a seemingly typical family man and beloved teacher.

“Most of these predators are found to be people that look normal,” said Namkung. “We see them everyday and they can even be people we’ve known for a long time and trust.”

As the women in the book sort through their experiences one step at a time, the reader will go through the same process. Things that didn’t raise red-flags in the earlier chapters will set off alarms toward the book’s conclusion.  One of these examples being when Caryn says in the book, “I remember he [Copeland] told me his students were his friends during the interview I did with him so many years ago. At the time, I didn’t realize how sad and strange that sounded.”

Despite the heartbreaking stories and emotional toll this story takes on one’s soul, Namkung leaves readers with hope rather than hopelessness, that a happy life after trauma is possible and that when one of us speaks out, the rest will raise their voices. Justice is not perfect, and the world is filled with uncertainty. While we don’t always get the answers we ask for, These Violent Delights speaks truth that when someone takes a chance and reaches out their hand, someone will be there to help pull them up.

“I want women and men to feel empowered to speak out against the things that are wrong in this world,” said Namkung. “They are not alone, all it takes is one person.”

You can visit Victoria Namkung’s website at http://victorianamkung.com

Posted in Blog, Inspiration and tagged , ,
Say My Name with Allegra Huston
Sunday, March 18th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Allegra Huston has written screenplays, journalism, and one previous book, Love Child: A Memoir of Family Lost and Found. After an early career in UK publishing, including four years as Editorial Director of Weidenfeld & Nicolson, she joined the film company Pathé as development consultant. She wrote and produced the award-winning short film Good Luck, Mr. Gorski, and is on the editorial staff of the international art and culture magazine Garage. www.allegrahuston.com

Waiting For The Electricity with Christina Nichol
Sunday, March 11th at 8pm ET/5pm PT

Christina Nichol grew up in Northern California and received her MFA from the University of Florida. She has traveled widely, worked for nonprofit film companies, and taught English in India, South Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Russia, and the republic of Georgia, where her debut novel, Waiting for the Electricity, was set. Christina won a 2012 Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award and a gold medal in the 2015 California Book Awards for First Fiction. She has been published in Lucky PeachGuernicaThe Paris ReviewHarper’sSubtropics, Lonely Planet, and The Wall Street Journal.