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27

thursday

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Like the song says, breakin’ up is hard to do. Men’s Health contributing editor Tom Zoellner and his ex-fiancée weren’t able to give their love another try, but the leftover ring from their broken engagement did inspire Zoellner to pen the super-serious The Heartless Stone: A Journey Through the World of Diamonds, Deceit and Desire, an exposé of the world’s dirty ice industry. Zoellner’s narrative may be slightly smothered by the goopy details of his marriage-that-never-was, but his muckraking—including interviews with exploited miners and corrupt smugglers of “blood diamonds,” as well as the hip-hop artists who sport those useless baubles as nihilistic bling—is first-rate. If the international market for this gem is half the post-colonial mess Zoellner makes it out to be, socially conscious would-be grooms of the future will have to find another way to say “I love you”: cubic zirconia. Zoellner discusses and signs copies of his work at 7 p.m. at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 364-1919. (Justin Moyer)