Talk to Me

Putnam. Jan. 2019. 320p. ISBN 9780735214378. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780735214385. F
Ted Grayson is the last of a dying breed, a respected, wealthy, somber, white news anchor. He is slow to recognize the impermanence of his position even aftera video surfaces of him verbally abusing a young female coworker. With calls for his resignation and a #tedgraysonisawhore hashtag, the tide of public opinion has turned against him. To make matters worse, his wife, Claire, is finally leaving their loveless marriage; his daughter, Franny, a web journalist, pens a tell-all article blasting his parenting; and he feels a persistent pain in his testicle. Ted isn't sure how to move forward. He must face the consequences his life of privilege and inattention has created. That is, if he survives his fall from an airplane, which is where our story begins.
VERDICT Kenney (Truth in Advertising) delivers a deep tale that balances wit with human folly. No aspects of our modern media lives are left uncovered, as he portrays everything from the old-fashioned nightly news to shock-obsessed web tabloids to CNN's Anderson Cooper 360. Talk to Me reminds us that relationships are lost, and found, in the words we say and the actions we take. [See Prepub Alert, 7/19/18.]
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