The Best Minds: A Conversation with Jonathan Rosen

June 6, 2023

When the Rosen Family moved to New Rochelle in 1973, Jonathan Rosen and Michael Laudor became inseparable. Both children of the cultural elite, the boys were best friends, keen competitors and seemed poised to join the American meritocratic elite- but all wasn’t as it seemed. Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, Michael was locked in a psychiatric hospital battling delusions when he learned he’d been accepted to Yale Law School. He not only managed to graduate, but sold a memoir and film rights to his extraordinary story, completing the American dream- until Michael and his tirelessly supportive girlfriend Carrie became a front-page story of an entirely different sort–a tale so riveting and harrowing, it needed to be told in this compelling literary memoir. 

On June 6, 2023 FOLCS was joined by acclaimed author Jonathan Rosen on his new book The Best Minds, a haunting investigation of the forces that led his closest childhood friend from the heights of brilliant promise, to the forensic psychiatric hospital where he resides since killing the woman he loved in 1998. A story about friendship, love, and the price of self-delusion, The Best Minds explores the ways in which we understand—and fail to understand—mental illness.


Watch The Best Minds: A Conversation with Jonathan Rosen here.


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Jonathan Rosen

Jonathan Rosen is the author of two novels: Eve’s Apple and Joy Comes in the Morning, and two non-fiction books: The Talmud and the Internet: A Journey Between Worlds and The Life of the Skies: Birding at the End of Nature. His essays and articles have appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Wall Street Journal, and numerous anthologies. He lives with his family in New York City.