Tucson Festival of Books

David McCumber


David  McCumber is an award-wining journalist and author who is now the executive editor of the Arizona Daily Star. This is his third tour with the Star. In 1984, he was a finalist for a Pulitzer Prize with two other Star staffers for a report about deficiencies at the Tucson defense plant then operated by the Hughes Aircraft Company. He also helped to direct the Star's Pulitzer-winning investigation of the University of Arizona football program in 1980.
In subsequent years, he was managing editor of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and founded Big Sky Journal magazine. He also served as Washington Bureau chief for Hearst Newspapers and as a regional news executive for Lee Enterprises.
McCumber has authored three books "X-Rated: A Story of Sex, Money and Death," "Playing off the Rail: A Pool Hustler's Journey" and "The Cowboy Way: Seasons of a Montana Ranch." With Andrew Schneider, he co-authored a fourth, "An Air That Kills," an investigation of thousands of asbestos-related deaths and illnesses in Libby, Montana and across the country.

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Scheduled events:
The Man Who Would Be King
Jonathan Eig is making his fifth visit to our festival this weekend, and again he comes with an award-winning biography. This one features Rev. Martin Luther King, whose American Dream remains as elusive as it was 60 years ago. Did any of us really know the man? Let's ask.

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 10:00 am - 11:00 am
History / Biography
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Jonathan Eig
Call of the Wild
David Quammen spent 20 years with National Geographic, introducing us to wildlife from all over the world. His new book features his favorites ... and tells us how they are doing now.

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm
Science / Medicine / Technology
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: David Quammen
Moderator: David McCumber
In the Crosshairs of History
The AR-15 has taken its place alongside the most infamous firearms in American history, but almost nothing is known about how it came to be. Cameron McWhirter knows. Today, he'll share what he learned when researching "American Gun."

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Current Issues / Politics / Social Science
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Cameron McWhirter
Moderator: Tim Steller
Extraordinary Ordinary People
Today we welcome Chris Eliopoulous, co-creator of the "Ordinary People Change the World" series of children's picture books with Brad Meltzer. He will discuss their new collection and his own life as a literary illustrator.

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Children
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Chris Eliopoulos
Western History is Hit and Myth
In her new book, "True West," Betsy Quammen explores the history of the American West ... and how myths often shaped our understanding of what the West actually was. Was it Wild, Wild? Yes and no!

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
History / Biography
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Betsy Gaines Quammen
Moderator: Henry Brean
Precision Quitting
Many of us are convinced that persistence pays, that quitters never win, but Julia Keller believes that throwing in the towel is often the best of all options. She has even written a book about it. Today, she'll share her research into the neuroscience of nope!

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Memoir / Essays / Creative Nonfiction
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Julia Keller
History the Hard Way
In the same week Americans first walked on the moon, two men completed a very different quest here on earth: they crossed the Atlantic Ocean in rowboats. Alone. What drove them? What were the rewards? Historian James R. Hansen was wondering those things himself!

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm
History / Biography
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: James Hansen
Moderator: Brett Fera
Politics, Media Collide
Newspaper editors are supposed to write the headlines, not make them, but history came looking for Marty Baron. While at the Boston Globe, he managed the Spotlight unit that exposed decades of abuse by Catholic priests. Later, as editor of the Washington Post, he found himself in the crossfire between President Donald Trump and the Post's new owner: Jeff Bezos. Where should we begin?

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Current Issues / Politics / Social Science
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Martin Baron
Moderator: Ellie Wolfe
She Does It Write
What does longtime journalist Gwen Florio do in her spare time? She writes, of course. She authors mysteries such as "Best Be Prepared." Today she will discuss her latest books and how lessons learned as a newswoman help her create plots and divine whodunit.

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Mystery / Thrillers
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelist: Gwen Florio
Moderator: Cathy Burch
Nothing Common About Commonplace Books
Pulitzer Prize-winner Julia Keller and Executive Editor David McCumber of the Arizona Daily Star will discuss "commonplacing" -- the art of seeking and keeping inspiring notes and quotes to enhance your life.

Arizona Daily Star Stage (Seats 250)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sun, Mar 10, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Memoir / Essays / Creative Nonfiction
Signing area: Signing - Arizona Daily Star (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Julia Keller, David McCumber
Moderator: John Humenik