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Book details
  • Genre:FICTION
  • SubGenre:Mystery & Detective / General
  • Language:English
  • Pages:317
  • eBook ISBN:9781483536507

The Episode

by Richard Pollak

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The Episode is a novel of epilepsy, lost memory and suspense. Only yesterday, reporter Daniel Cooper was a free man–free to ignore the limits of conventional journalism, free from the seizures that anticonvulsant drugs had suppressed for more than two decades. But now a violent epileptic attack has stolen more than 24 hours from his memory and there is a dead man on his doorstep, a mysterious .45 in his apartment, and two detectives on his back. Could he possibly have committed murder in a fit of epileptic rage? Against a background of poisonous duplicity, Daniel relentlessly tries to recapture the lost hours and get to the bottom of what he believes to be a major criminal conspiracy involving drugs and the rampant greed of a New York City real estate baron.


The Episode is a taut, spellbinding detective story. But it is also a powerful medical thriller that probes deeply the still widely misunderstood realities of epilepsy, a malady the author has coped with all his life. "Mr. Pollak's extensive knowledge of epilepsy gives the book many of its best moments," observed The Wall Street Journal. "Compelling, harrowing, top-flight suspense!" wrote People magazine.

About the author

Richard Pollak is the author of (besides The Episode) After the Barn: A Brother's Memoir; The Creation of Dr. B: A Biography of Bruno Bettelheim; The Colombo Bay, an account of his five-week voyage on that container ship after the 9/11 terror attacks, and Up Against Apartheid: The Role and the Plight of the Press in South Africa. From 1979 to 2004, he was variously an executive editor, literary editor and contributing editor of The Nation. He has written for that weekly, and for Harper’s, The Atlantic, The New York Times Book Review and other major magazines. He co-founded and edited [More] magazine, the monthly journalism review that published in the 1970s, and edited Stop the Presses, I Want to Get Off!, a collection of articles from the magazine. He was an associate editor at Newsweek, a political reporter at The Evening Sun in Baltimore, and a Poynter Fellow at Yale University. At Yale he created and taught a course in “The Politics of Journalism,” which he also taught for several years at New York University. He lives in Portland, Maine, with his wife, the pianist Diane Walsh.