“This memoir covers a crucial time in the history of freedom of expression... filled with daring adventures, philosophical debates and meetings with some of the bravest writers and journalists who have risked so much to tell the truth.”

—Jennifer Clement, President, PEN International 2015-2021

About Joanne

Joanne Leedom-Ackerman is a novelist, short story writer, and journalist. Her fiction includes regional bestseller The Dark Path to the River and No Marble Angels. A former reporter for The Christian Science Monitor, Joanne has won awards for her nonfiction and published fiction, articles and essays in newspapers, magazines, and books.

Praise for Joanne's Fiction

"Well-written, thematically rich. I fell in love with the characters. I didn’t want the pleasure to end."

—Barbara Kingsolver, Poisonwood Bible

"...the writer’s strengths—honesty, compassion and the ability to present such memorable scenes."

—Jill McCorkle, The New York Times Book Review

Praise for Joanne's Non-fiction

"PEN Journeys tells the story of the important organization PEN from the ground and through insightful eyes…and with narrative flair."

—Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran

"This invaluable book shows the range and depth of Liu Xiaobo's interests, concerns, and thoughts. It helps us know this remarkable man intimately."

—Ha Jin, author of Waiting, winner of the National Book Award

Latest Blog Post

Lost in the Cloud

July 18, 2022

I’ve lost emails I’d saved as drafts on my phone. I have searched everywhere—in Trash, in Junk, in Sent, and in Received and have concluded they have disappeared, perhaps into the cloud. “The cloud” is a relatively new concept, at least for my generation. The miracle and mystery that all our information can be stored out there “in the cloud” still bends the mind. Who named this ephemeral space “the cloud”? I am sitting outside on this cool summer morning staring up at a puffy ceiling of clouds above me. These clouds are shrouding the sun and keeping the temperature relatively cool. I know these are not “the cloud” the technicians mean, but I look up anyway for reference and to contemplate the vastness of the sky and beyond that, the universe. This past week we were let into a…