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Award-Winning Author Erik Larson to Speak at UW April 20

March 7, 2016
man sitting against a wall and smiling
Author Erik Larson will speak Wednesday, April 20, at the University of Wyoming. (Benjamin Benschneider Photo)

Erik Larson, a master writer of narrative nonfiction, will speak Wednesday, April 20, at 1:30 p.m. in the University of Wyoming College of Education auditorium. His presentation is free and open to the public; he will sign books following his talk.

Larson’s presentation, part of the UW Libraries Development Board’s annual author event, is funded by the McMurry-Spieles Endowment for Library Excellence. Members of the development board will host a dinner with Larson at 6 p.m. To make a reservation, go to by Wednesday, April 13.

Those attending the afternoon talk are encouraged to arrive early to allow time for parking and seating. UW Transit and Parking Services will provide complimentary parking on campus starting at noon in select areas, and free shuttle service will be available the afternoon of the talk. For more information about campus parking and shuttle services, visit

Larson’s vividly written, best-selling books have won several awards and been published worldwide. His most recent book, “Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania,” is about the 1915 sinking of the British luxury ocean liner. Larson’s “In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror and an American Family in Hitler’s Berlin” tells the saga of the American ambassador and his family in Berlin during the first years of Hitler’s reign. Both books topped the New York Times Best-Seller list.

His critically acclaimed book, “The Devil in the White City,” intertwines the stories of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair and one of America’s worst serial killers. The book won an Edgar Award for nonfiction crime writing and was a finalist for a National Book Award. It remained on the New York Times Best-Seller hardcover and paperback lists for a combined total of more than five years.

In his 2006 best-seller, “Thunderstruck,” Larson chronicles the strange intersection in the careers of Guglielmo Marconi, inventor of wireless, and Hawley Harvey Crippen, England’s second most-famous murderer (after Jack the Ripper). “Isaac’s Storm,” another best-seller, won the American Meteorology Society’s Louis J. Battan Author’s Award.

Among his other books are “Lethal Passage” and “The Naked Consumer.”

Larson graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied Russian history, language and culture. He received a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University.

After a brief stint at the Bucks County Courier Times, Larson became a staff writer for The Wall Street Journal, and later a contributing writer for Time magazine. He has written articles for The Atlantic, Harper’s Magazine, The New Yorker and other publications. He has taught nonfiction writing at San Francisco State University, the Johns Hopkins Writing Seminars and the University of Oregon.

For more information about Larson’s presentation, call UW Libraries at (307) 766-3279 or visit  

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