To Tell the Truth : My Life as a Foreign Correspondent

Helluva Job is Pulitzer Prize winner Lewis M. Simons’s recollection of his 50 years as a foreign correspondent, one whose powerful stories contributed to transforming Asia from Vietnam War-era basket case to a global boomtown that today rivals the United States. Simons’s investigative work led to the toppling of a dictator in the Philippines. He covered the Tiananmen Square massacre in China, bloody coups in Thailand, attempted genocide and societal collapse in Cambodia, and economic advance, decline and rebirth in Japan. He was expelled from India for his exclusive reporting on Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s political misuse of the armed forces. Breaking his own strict rule against becoming personally involved with people whose stories he covered, he saved the life of a dying teenaged Tibetan Buddhist monk. Simons molds the narrative of his lengthy, action-packed career from foxhole mud and backroom dirt. Layered with moments of tenderness and humor, as his camp-following family often accompanies him, the result is a masterful chronicle of war and murder; extreme poverty and suffering alongside repellent wealth and indulgence; wholesale larceny and ruling-class corruption-much of which escaped the scrutiny of other journalists. Readers who appreciate real-life historic drama will be enthralled.