— The funny thing about “anonymous” authors is that they rarely stay anonymous. And sometimes, in the publishing world, that happens by design.
Back in July, Little, Brown and Company made headlines and generated plenty of speculation when it announced it would publish “Untitled,” by Anonymous, a book that would reveal “the inside story of life with one of the most controversial figures of our time.” On Thursday, the publishing company gave up the goods about the much-anticipated book.
The title: “Truth and Consequences: Life Inside the Madoff Family.” The writer: Journalist and author Laurie Sandell, who will base the book on extensive and exclusive interviews with the closest surviving family members of jailed financier Bernie Madoff.
Madoff is spending the rest of his life in prison for masterminding the largest pyramid scheme in history and costing innocent investors billions of dollars. One of Madoff’s sons, Mark Madoff, committed suicide in his New York apartment two years after the revelations about his father came to light.
“Muzzled by lawyers, vilified by the media and roundly condemned by the public, the Madoffs have chosen to keep their silence — until now,” Little, Brown said in a release. “Ultimately, theirs is one of the most riveting stories of our time: a modern-day Greek tragedy about money, power, lies, family, truth and consequences.”
The 320-page non-fiction hardcover book will include a 16-page photo insert and personal details from Madoff’s wife, Ruth, his son, Andrew, and Andrew’s fiancée, Catherine Hooper, among others. Andrew and Mark Madoff turned their father in to authorities in December 2008.
In an April interview with TODAY.com, Catherine Hooper said she looked forward to the day when she could speak more fully about the Madoff scandal and set the record straight from the affected family members’ point of view.
“I know that for anyone who is looking at my company or me as an individual, it’s something people have curiosity about,” said Hooper, who runs Black Umbrella, a business that helps families put together emergency plans and prepare for disasters. “I certainly didn’t expect this. I didn’t see it coming.”
The initially coy nature of the July announcement about “Untitled” by Anonymous brings to mind other books by “anonymous” authors, such as “Primary Colors: A Novel of Politics” (later revealed to have been written by columnist Joe Klein), and “O: A Presidential Novel” (reportedly written by Mark Salter, a speechwriter for Sen. John McCain). The tactic of keeping such key information about a book secret can be an effective marketing tool because it tends to generate a great deal of buzz, even months before a book has been released.
“Truth and Consequences” will retail at $26.99. Its release date is set for Oct. 31.