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May 24: Author Elliot Ackerman on His New Novel "Halcyon"

American Purpose

On May 24, 2023, Elliot Ackerman joined American Purpose via Zoom to discuss his new novel, Halcyon.

Ackerman's latest book explores a chilling alternate version of America’s recent past—and about two self-made men confronting a world that seems to be moving on without them. Stretching from pivotal elections to intimate family secrets, from the Battle of Saipan to the toppling of Confederate monuments, Halcyon grapples with what history means, who is affected by it, and how the complexities of our shared future rest on the dual foundations of remembering and forgetting.

Elliot Ackerman is the author of several novels as well as the memoir Places and Names: On War, Revolution and Returning (2019). His books have been nominated for the National Book Award, the Andrew Carnegie Medal in both fiction and non-fiction, and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize among others. His writing often appears in Esquire, The New Yorker, and The New York Times where he is a contributing opinion writer. He is both a former White House Fellow and Marine, and served five tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he received the Silver Star, the Bronze Star for Valor, and the Purple Heart.

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