Wednesday, May 18, 2011

WCI Featured Author: Lisa Cohen

Today, we’re kicking off our series featuring the authors of Women in Crime Ink starting with the fabulously talented Lisa R. Cohen. Lisa is best known for her book AFTER ETAN, which chronicles the disappearance of 6-year-old Etan Patz, who disappeared while walking to school in New York City on May 25, 1979. The disappearance of Etan Patz was one of the first cases that spawned a nationwide interest in missing children. Never found, Etan was declared dead in 2001. Prime suspect Jose Ramos is currently incarcerated for the sexual molestation of several boys—but he has never been charged with Etan’s abduction. However, in early 2010, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office reopened the investigation into Etan's disappearance.

Lisa Cohen is also an Emmy-award winning television news magazine producer with more than 20 years of network news experience at ABC and CBS News. At “PrimeTime Live” and then for “60 Minutes II,” she produced reports for Diane Sawyer, Sam Donaldson, Peter Jennings, Cynthia McFadden and others on topics as diverse as the right to bear arms, have abortions and exercise the death penalty. She has covered some of the biggest moments in recent history including TWA 800, the Oklahoma bombing, and the September 11 terror attacks. Her 1996 one-hour documentary for ABC News PrimeTime Live, “Judgment at Midnight,” won multiple awards, including the NATAS Emmy; CINE Golden Eagle; International Film and Television Award; and the Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television “Gracie” award.

In addition to AFTER ETAN, Lisa is hard at work on a long-term documentary following one extraordinary woman who spent a year fighting (and beating) breast cancer, which then inspired her to take on the American health care system. Cohen is also a media consultant and teaches journalism/television production. She is an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism,and recently was a Princeton University Ferris Professor of Journalism.

Lisa has received critical acclaim and stellar reviews for AFTER ETAN, including:

"When our son, Adam, was abducted in 1981, my wife, Revé, and I felt no one could really understand what we were going through. Then we met Julie and Stan Patz and found that we were members of a horrible but exclusive club. Their courage inspired us then and inspires us now. Reading AFTER ETAN, made me even more grateful for dedicated public servants like the incredible prosecutor who ultimately produced some measure of justice for Etan. Every American needs to know Etan's story."
John Walsh, “America’s Most Wanted”

An engrossing account of a watershed missing-child case...

…The author tells the complete, heartbreaking story, from day one of the boy’s disappearance to his family’s continuing efforts to bring a rapist and killer to justice. First-time author Cohen, who covered the case for 60 Minutes and PrimeTime Live, admirably avoids a hysterical approach to the shocking subject matter. Instead, she lets the disturbing facts speak for themselves. The author had access to an astounding amount of information, including multiple interviews with Patz’s parents and former chief prosecutor Stuart GraBois…

...A masterful combination of deep human interest and detailed criminal investigation into a parent’s worst nightmare."
Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews

In the first-ever book on this celebrated case, Lisa Cohen finally gives us the answers behind the most vexing child kidnapping since the Lindbergh Baby. It’s a harrowing portrait of a family's grief and an engrossing detective story. A powerful lesson in humanity tested and triumphant.”
Nicholas Pileggi, author, Wiseguys, Goodfellas, Casino

For more on Lisa Cohen and AFTER ETAN, visit her website here.

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