MILFORD — Jack Devine, who at the pinnacle of his career was the CIA’s top spymaster and head of the CIA’s operations outside the United States, will appear in conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tim Weiner, author of the National Book Award-winning “Legacy of Ashes,” the probing and often critical history of the CIA, at the fourth annual Milford Readers & Writers Festival.

MILFORD — Jack Devine, who at the pinnacle of his career was the CIA’s top spymaster and head of the CIA’s operations outside the United States, will appear in conversation with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tim Weiner, author of the National Book Award-winning “Legacy of Ashes,” the probing and often critical history of the CIA, at the fourth annual Milford Readers & Writers Festival.
This sure-to-be provocative conversation, which will take place the afternoon of Sept. 21 at The Milford Theatre, will be moderated by outspoken journalist Lucian Truscott IV, who has written extensively about the U.S. military.
Their panel titled “Telling Secrets: Writing About the CIA” will focus on the challenges of writing about an organization whose very existence is based on secrets. Devine tells his story in his memoir “Good Hunting” — he was in Chile when Allende fell, ran Charlie Wilson’s war in Afghanistan and was deeply involved in Iran-Contra. Weiner dug deep into the history of the CIA to analyze and sometimes criticize many of the organization’s covert operations

More Main Stage

In addition to this conversation, on Saturday, Sept. 21, the Main Stage will feature:
•    A conversation with best-selling author of historical fiction mysteries Anne Perry conducted by writer Victoria Zackheim;
•    Author and activist Helen Zia, whose book “Last Boat Out of Shanghai” covers a harrowing period in Chinese history and her mother’s life in the midst of it, will discuss the refugee experience with Princeton University professor Anne Anlin Cheng; and
•    Following up on the huge interest in last year’s discussion of the paranormal, the panel “Life in the Afterlife” will feature internationally acclaimed psychic/medium George Anderson, author of “We Don’t Die,” in conversation with Dr. Eben Alexander, author of “Proof of Heaven,” talking about his near-death experience.
On Sunday, the Main Stage will feature the discussion “Our Constitution Under Siege” between Fox News Senior Judicial Analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano and constitutional scholar and author Jeffrey Rosen, moderated by Milford Mayor Sean Strub.
Next up will be the conversation “In the Company of Legends,” with authors and award-winning television producers Joan Kramer and David Heeley who will share film clips and behind-the-scenes stories of famous personalities such as Elizabeth Taylor, Fred Astaire and Katharine Hepburn, whose lives they documented for television. They will be interviewed by film historian John DiLeo.

Civil rights activist

A special Main Stage conversation, free to the community, rounds out the afternoon on Sunday. Author Mary Frances Berry, a prominent activist in the cause of civil rights, gender equality and social justice, will be featured in a conversation titled “Organizing for Change.” Berry is a professor of American Social Thought, History and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.
All Main Stage programs will include an opportunity for conversation between the authors and the audience.
A limited number of festival passes valid for entry to all festival events as well as a private authors reception open only to pass holders are available for sale at the price of $175 per person on the website. For more information about the festival and to purchase passes, go to milfordreadersandwriters.com (prices for the pass will increase on Sept. 3).
In addition to the ticketed events, the festival also offers a variety of free programs, including the fantasy-themed science fiction panel “The Wide Worlds of Fantasy,” "Moral Lessons through Children's Books" and “Fun for Kids” at the Pike County Public Library.

More activities

Other free panels and activities around town include:
• “Seeing the Forest Through the Trees: Finding Deeper Meaning in the Woods” at Grey Towers;
• “Triumph Over Trauma III: Far Beyond Survival’;
• “The ABC’s of Writing for Children”;
• “Hook, Line and Sinker: How to Catch and Keep a Reader”;
• “Rhythm and Rhyme in Poetry”;
• “Romance – Love is in the Air”;
• An open-mic event: “RAW After Dark”;
• Science Fiction readings and beer tasting at the Dimmick Inn;
• The “Fauchere Series” authors; and
• A pop-up bookstore, conversations, book-signings with local writers, and more.
The Milford Readers & Writers Festival is a project of Pike Artworks, Inc., a 501-c-3 not-for-profit organized by a group of community volunteers from the Upper Delaware River Valley region.
For more information, visit www.milfordreadersandwriters.com, or the festival’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MRWFestival/ or Instagram page at https://www.instagram.com/mrwfestival/.