Jennet Conant

Jennet Conant (born July 15, 1959) is an American non-fiction author and journalist. She has written four books about the World War II, three of which have appeared on the New York Times . Tuxedo Park: A Wall Street Tycoon and the Secret Palace of Science that Changes the Course of WWII , 109 East Palace: Robert Oppenheimer And The Secret of the Alamos , The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington , and A Covert Affair: Julia Child and Paul Child in the OSS .

ographical Details

Born in Seoul, South Korea and raised in Asia and America, received a BA degree in Political Theory from Bryn Mawr College in 1982, and double-majored in Philosophy at Haverford College . She completed a master’s degree in journalism from New York City’s Columbia University in 1983. She was awarded a John J. McCloy Fellowship to study politics in Germany .

Conant went on to work at Newsweek magazine for seven years, and wrote profiles for Rolling Stone , Spy magazine, and The New York Times . Additionally, she was a contributing editor for Esquire , GQ , and Vanity Fair , from which she resigned to write her first book, Tuxedo Park . Her profile of James Watson , the co-discoverer of the double-helix, was featured in The Best American Science & Nature Writing 2004 .

She lives in New York City and in Sag Harbor, New York . She is married to the journalist Steve Kroft . They have one.

Conant is the granddaughter of James Bryant Conant , noted Chemist and President of Harvard University .


  • Tuxedo Park: A Tycoon and the Secret Palace of Science that Changed the Course of World War II (2002), based in part on her family’s role in World War II, explores the hitherto unknown story of lawyer, scientist, and New York Financial Alfred Lee Loomis and his role in the development of radar technology during World War II.
  • Her second book, 109 East Palace: Robert Oppenheimer and the Secret City of Los Alamos (2005), is an account of the history, science, politics and struggles surrounding the building of the atomic bomb . It includes insights from the author’s grandfather, James B. Conant , who was an administrator for the Manhattan Project . [1] [2] In 2006, it won the Spirit of the West Award for literary achievement in nonfiction. [3]
  • The Irregulars: Roald Dahl and the British Spy Ring in Wartime Washington (2008) is about the structure, history, development, implications, and influence of British spying in the United States before, during and after World War II. Herald of the organization known as British Security Co-ordination (BSC), the recruits as Roald Dahl , Ian Fleming and David Ogilvy as the head of BSC, William Stephenson . [4] It was selected as Amazon Best Book of the Month September 2008. [5]
  • A Covert Affair: Julia Child and Paul Child in the OSS (2011) is about the experiences of Julia Child and Paul Child as members of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) Were caught up in the McCarthy Red spy hunt in the 1950s. [6]


Conant has been widely praised by critics. Kirkus Reviews hailed Tuxedo Park as “Remarkable and remarkably told, as F. Scott Fitzgerald had penned Batman.” [7] Jonathan Yardley in a Washington Post review of The Irregulars said that “As was true of her excellent first book, Tuxedo Park , in The Irregulars she removed the dust of history from a forgotten but important figure to be reckoned with before and during The war. ” [8]


  1. Jump up^ Jennet Conant,My Grandfather and the Bomb,Los Angeles Times, May 2, 2005
  2. Jump up^ Kirkus Review
  3. Jump up^ Mountains & Plains Independent Booksellers Association
  4. Jump up^ [1]
  5. Jump up^
  6. Jump up^ Barnes and Noble
  7. Jump up^ Kirkus Reviews
  8. Jump up^ Jonathan Yardley on ‘The Irregulars’

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