The Boston Globe celebrates him as “one of this nation’s finest writers.” The Austin Chronicle calls him “one of the most humane, insightful, powerful prose stylists working today in any genre….also one of the most radical.” Each novel he publishes, says The Philadelphia Inquirer, “is an event, a literary feast for lovers of the written word. . . . There are few contemporary writers as consistently fine….” Writing in The New Yorker, Ben Greenman observes, “All his works share an abiding interest in the moral dimensions of everyday life….”
The Marygrove College Department of English and Modern Languages is pleased to announce that mystery writer, novelist, and social commentator Walter Mosley will be the twenty-second guest—and the first mystery writer— in its Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series. He will deliver the Lillian and Donald Bauder Lecture at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 16, 2010 in Alumnae Hall. Afterward, he will sign copies of his works, which will be available for purchase.
Mr. Mosley has written 32 books, and his work has been translated into 21 languages. Ten novels and one book of short stories feature private investigator Easy Rawlins, the first of which, Devil in a Blue Dress, was made into a movie starring Denzel Washington and Jennifer Beals. Other Easy Rawlins books are A Red Death, White Butterfly, Black Betty, A Little Yellow Dog, Gone Fishin’, Bad Boy Brawley Brown, Six Easy Pieces, Little Scarlet, Cinnamon Kiss, and Blonde Faith. His next series, featuring Socrates Fortlow, includes Always Outnumbered, Always Outgunned, Walking the Dog, and The Right Mistake. His third mystery series presents character Fearless Jones in Fearless Jones, Fear Itself, and Fear of the Dark.
Mosley has written other works of fiction, including RL’s Dream, 47, Fortunate Son, Killing Johnny Fry, Diablerie, The Tempest Tales, and, in 2004, The Man in My Basement, which New Yorker reviewer Ben Greenman calls “a compelling, peculiar exploration of race and identity.” Mosley has also authored three works of science fiction: Blue Light, Futureland, and The Wave, and several works of non-fiction: Workin’ on the Chain Gang, What Next, Life Out of Context, This Year You Write Your Novel. He also edited the collection of essays, Black Genius: African-American Solutions to African-American Problems. His most recent novel, The Long Fall, which begins a new series featuring private investigator Leonid McGill, was published in March 2009.
Mosley has received numerous honors, including an O Henry Award, a Grammy Award, the PEN USA Lifetime Achievement Award, the Sundance Risktaker Award, the TransAfrica International Literary Prize, and an honorary doctorate from The City College. He also received the Anisfield Wolf Award, an honor reserved for works that “increase the appreciation and understanding of race in America.”
Working with the City University of New York (CUNY), Mosley set up a unique publishing degree program for young urban residents. His current project, “Making Democracy,” uses the Internet to support citizen activists, an effort to build “a future where people are the special interest.”
Walter Mosley was born and raised in Los Angeles; he now resides in New York City.