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Roy Harris is the master historian of the Pulitzer Prize. He has written the real inside story of the most serious journalism of the last century, and as a result provided a brilliant portrait of America. Know your journalism, and you will know your country and its values.”

—Bob Woodward, The Washington Post

Pulitzer's Gold is a deeply researched, richly anecdotal and faithfully inspirational chronicle of how relentless journalists, over the last 100 years, have exposed a remarkable assortment of ills and abuses to make the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service the global standard for excellence. Again and again, Roy Harris's smooth story-behind-the-story technique underscores the indispensable role of journalists in a free society.”

—Sig Gissler, Former Administrator, The Pulitzer Prizes

“At a time when many lament a general decline in watchdog journalism, the centennial of the Pulitzer Prizes is a good time to reflect on the pivotal role the Pulitzer Gold Medal for Meritorious Public Service has played in both celebrating and encouraging public-interest journalism. There is nobody more equipped to tell a century of these riveting tales than Roy Harris Jr., as he takes us deep into some of the most engaging and impactful storytelling that has emerged from many great investigations and a continuing search for the truth.“
—Raju Narisetti, Senior Vice President, News Corp & former Managing Editor, The Washington Post & The Wall Street Journal

“Harris’ Pulitzer’s Gold recalls some of this nation’s best journalism and tells how the stories came to be. A reporter notices an unusual data point, newsrooms publish while storms rage or human threats abound, a journalist “writes like a poet, but (with) the skills of an investigative reporter.” Each led to powerful news stories that improved communities. The book provides the lift we need today. It captures the passion of journalism and celebrates great works.”
—Karen Brown Dunlap, President Emerita, The Poynter Institute

Pulitzer's Gold is a goldmine of inspiration for both journalists and non-journalists. Those in the newspaper business, who now find themselves obsessing about staff cutbacks and circulation declines, should embrace this book as a reminder of the highest ideals, and the absolute thrills, to be found in their profession. As for regular readers, Pulitzer's Gold offers marvelous storytelling, real-life adventures, and absolute proof that journalism can change our world for the better.”
—Wall Street Journal senior writer and columnist Jeffrey Zaslow, whose books include the best-selling The Last Lecture, written with Randy Pausch.

“It is a must read for those who want an inside look at journalism at its best. There is no higher calling among American newspapers than public service journalism, and Roy Harris delves into it with flair and expertise. He tells us why and how extraordinary stories were done.”
—Gene Roberts, co-winner 2007 Pulitzer Prize for History, and former executive editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer, and managing editor of the New York Times.


On, Vanity Fair investigative reporter and two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Jim Steele wrote this March 7, 2010, review. Steele's view of the Pulitzer's Gold: “This is a magnificent book on so many different levels. The stories themselves – the origin of the award, the recipients, the occasional intrigues – all are worthy topics. But Pulitzer's Gold does something even richer by reminding us of the glorious calling that is journalism and how far back it goes”. It is “reassuring to see how many such heroic efforts have been made over time. That reflects the depth of the research and the details on so many little-known (or unknown) episodes in our past.”

Here is what some others are saying about Pulitzer's Gold.
Also see more Comments from other Journalists below.

Robert Schmuhl, Philadelphia Inquirer Book Review (Friday, March 21st): News stories that set gold standard for journalism.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch Book Review (Sunday, March 9th): Pulitzer's Gold. Excellent book shows newspapers do matter

Choice, the publication of the American Library Association, (which made Pulitzer's Gold an “Editor's Pick” in July 2008): Harris looks at the background, intrigue, turns and twists, rivalry, and unapologetic joys surrounding that gold medal.

Midwest Book Review (Feb. 2nd, 2008): A distinguished tribute to the journalists who labored to bring the truth to light and help make America better place to live

Other Comments from Journalists

Katrina evacuation by the Times-Picayune staff
"This is the story of reporters who started out raking the muck and ended up mining for gold. It's also a unique lens for viewing some of the most important events of the twentieth century.... While celebrating some of the most important achievements of the now-maligned mainstream media, it underscores the need to find ways of continuing such journalism in the shrinking newsrooms of the new and fast-changing multi-media world.”
—Anthony Marro, former editor, Newsday
“At a time when the business model of the American newspaper lies broken, this book tells us, by vivid examples, why newspapers are essential to our national well-being. It is a sobering yet inspiring message.”
—John S. Carroll, former Los Angeles Times, Baltimore Sun, and Lexington Herald-Leader editor, and Pulitzer Prize Board member from 1993 to 2002

Carl Bernstein, Katharine Graham & Bob Woodward

“I have read lots of books about investigative and other public service journalism. So when a book in that realm is fresh and exciting to me, that is an accomplishment. Harris says he 'attempts to trace the development of American journalism in a new way' by building cases from Pulitzer Prize Gold Medal winners. He delivers on that promise. He also pledges to acknowledge reporters and editors who may have gotten little personal attention at the time because the Gold Medal is a newspaper honor, not an award for individuals. Again, he delivers.”
—Steve Weinberg, author of the best-selling Taking on the Trust

“[The] ignorance about many of the 92 gold medals that have been awarded through the years is finally remedied by Harris's splendid volume....”
“The chapter on the New York Times tells how ... Gerald Boyd, who had been Times managing editor for only five days when terrorist-controlled jetliners struck the World Trade Center, managed that week's 'battlefield coverage.' Harris interviewed Boyd before his death in 2006. The priest sex abuse scandal might have gone unknown had it not been for new Boston Globe editor Martin Baron's decision on his first day on the job in 2001 to put a team to work uncovering evidence that initially was sealed by judges.”
“These stories and many other engrossing tales are told by Harris in a fine history of modern journalism that many forget about in an age of cutbacks and mergers.”
—Ted Gest, president of Criminal Justice Journalists, Washington, D.C., writing in the February 2008 St. Louis Journalism Review

Other Commentary on Pulitzer's Gold

David V. Mitchell, retired editor of the Pulitzer Prize winning Point Reyes Light (March 2008): Seeing history through newsmen’s eyes…. or the pen is mightier than the pigs

Editor & Publisher Magazine uses Pulizer's Gold to introduce the 2008 Pulitzer Prize season.
Click to read coverage
Copyright © 2008 Roy Harris
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