More After the Break: A Reporter Returns to Ten Unforgettable News Stories

Greenleaf. Jul. 2022. 248p. ISBN 9781626349605. $26.95. SOC SCI
Local news reporting not only provides a vital pipeline of information to a community, but it often reflects the heart and soul of a people. Maxfield (journalism, Columbia Univ.) recounts some of the most memorable stories she covered as a reporter for various broadcast news outlets in the New Jersey-New York area. With vivid details, she reflects on heart-wrenching stories ranging from a cancer patient receiving life-saving treatment due to the generosity of viewers, victims of moving vehicle accidents and how their deaths affected their families, and a ferry boat collision that altered the lives of injured passengers. Even when she reported on national events, she kept her focus on the local impact of the event. Her astute observations about having to interview people via Zoom after the onset of the COVID pandemic get at the core of what it means to be a reporter on a local beat. Without in-person interviewing, she felt that it was difficult to establish the intimacy of human connection she otherwise would have gotten.
VERDICT Reading these excellent stories is like watching the author report in real time.
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