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Thriller Author Talks Conspiracy at Santa Monica Library


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January 25, 2019 -- In Gray Basnight's new novel, "Flight of the Fox," a mathematician/cryptologist is on the run with an explosive document that would make him the greatest whistle-blower of all time.

Readers who don't want the ending spoiled can fill in any of a number of conspiracies -- from Illuminati running a secret global government to UFO aliens hidden in the New Mexico desert.

But the underlying theme, says Basnight, who will read from his novel at the Santa Monica Library next Saturday, is that the world we live in “is so complicated and confusing that suspicion of conspiracy is not only reasonable, it’s healthy.”
Author Gray Basnight
Gray Basnight

His talk, entitled "Conspiracy Fiction: Seeking Truth in Paranoia" will take place at 2 p.m. in the Main Library’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium, 601 Santa Monica Boulevard.

Reviewers have noted Basnight's thriller –- which interweaves fact and fiction –- is a nod to such 20th century authors as H.G. Wells, George Orwell and Robert Ludlum, whose dire warnings have become everyday reality.

The book, which spans much of the history of the FBI, is "a tour de force of a government agency that’s so out of control it will do anything to protect itself," wrote Mysterious Book Review.

“Something of a love letter to the classic espionage thrillers of the Cold War," said Forward Reviews, noting that the novel "serves as commentary on the state of high-tech surveillance in American life."

After nearly three decades in broadcast news, where he worked as a radio news writer, editor, and reporter, Basnight became "deeply immersed" in fiction writing, according to his bio.

His 2012 debut novel, "The Cop with the Pink Pistol," a modern NYC-detective mystery, was praised for its fast pace and tongue-in-cheek humor.

He followed it with a Civil War novel, "Shadows in the Fire," that follows the fate of two young slaves on the edge of freedom as Richmond falls.

A book sale and signing follows the free program. Seating is limited and on a first arrival basis.

The Main Library is served by Big Blue Bus routes 1, R10 and 18 and provides bicycle parking racks. The Expo Line and other bus routes stop nearby.

For more information, visit or contact the Santa Monica Public Library at (310) 458-8600.

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