Mark Weston’s prescient book, The Runner-Up Presidency - The Elections that Defied America’s Popular Will, and How Our Democracy Remains in Danger, published by Lyons Press (an imprint of Rowman & Littlefield) in March 2016 stated that the 2000 presidential election was not a fluke and correctly predicted that another candidate with fewer popular votes than his or her opponent would win the electoral vote and the presidency soon.
Les Crystal, former president of NBC News and MacNeil/Lehrer Productions says, "In an easy style, The Runner-Up Presidency explains why the Founders created electoral votes, why the system has lasted so long, and the danger ahead if we don't make repairs."
Weston has also finished what will be his seventh book, Repairing Our Democracy - 21st Century Tune-Ups for Our 230-Year-Old Government.
Weston’s previous book, Prophets and Princes – Saudi Arabia from Muhammad to the Present, was published by John Wiley & Sons in 2008. Britain’s New Statesman magazine called it “always intelligent...Weston has both talked to and listened to Saudi women," and Aramco World magazine said Weston “writes sensitively about the post-9/11 era.” While researching his book, Weston was a Visiting Scholar at the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies in Riyadh. Weston’s interest in the Muslim world began when he lived in Lahore while writing his first book, The Land and People of Pakistan (HarperCollins 1992.)
The Los Angeles Times called Weston’s second work, Giants of Japan: The Lives of Japan’s Greatest Men and Women (Kodansha 1999) “a superb new book.” Foreign Affairs called it “vivid, an excellent introduction to Japanese history.” Walter Mondale wrote the foreword, and the book went into paperback in 2002 and again in 2008.
Weston grew up in Armonk, NY and graduated from Brown University with a B.A. in history. He spent a year at the London School of Economics, then earned a law degree from the University of Texas. He was a lawyer for ABC Television and a journalist for ABC News, and has written articles for The New York Times, Washington Post, and TIME. He has also appeared on CNN, MSNBC, and PBS.
In 1991 Weston won enough money on TV's Jeopardy! to start a company that makes geographical jigsaw puzzles for children. He sold his firm to a larger puzzle company three years later. He has also written two children’s book, Finding the Speed of Light - The 1676 Discovery that Dazzled the World, published by Tilbury House in 2019, and Honda: The Boy Who Dreamed of Cars, which Lee & Low published in 2008 and republished as The Story of Car Engineer Soichiro Honda in 2018. In 2019, Weston will release a TV news game, SCOOP! - Around the World in 80 Spaces, as a Nintendo Wii game playable on TV screens.
Weston gives lively talks on Islam, Saudi Arabia, and the U.S. presidential election system. Venues have included the White House Fellows, the Middle East Institute, the Toyota Motor Corporation, and Columbia and Rice Universities.