Home
Search transcripts:    Advanced Search
Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
Photo Gallery
Transcript

Session:         Page of 1029

been submitted, but Ted Lawson, the co-author, was still a pilot. He was one of Doolittle's men, the men who had bombed Tokyo. Ted's plane came down and he was captured by the Japs. He escaped somehow or other but he lost his leg. Infection set in before they could treat him properly and it had to be amputated.

But here we had this hair-raising book but we were thwarted. President Roosevent himself said “No.” I went straight to him. He said, “Not yet, my boy. Wait! You sit on that book.” I had to keep this secret. It was burning my tongue. You know I'm not very good at keeping secrets, but this one I kept because all the details were top security secrets. I don't know why, because the deed had been done and most people suspected how it happened. Finally we got a release on it. Collier's Magazine and Random House pestered Roosevelt so that finally he said, “Oh, hell, go ahead.”

Our next big wartime author was Quentin Reynolds.

Q:

This is another story. We might as well get into that.

Cerf:

Yes. Quent did a book called Only the Stars Are Neutral, about the North African campaign. That was a huge success.

With that as a background, we got several other war books. I've forgotten the names of some of them, but one was Tunis Expedition, another story of North Africa, written





© 2006 Columbia University Libraries | Oral History Research Office | Rights and Permissions | Help