James Morrow biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

James Morrow
David Tait

James Morrow

James Morrow Biography

Born in Philadelphia in 1947, James Morrow spent his teenage years in Hillside Cemetery, not far from Philadelphia. After receiving degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University, Morrow began to produce prose fiction. His first such endeavor, The Wine of Violence, was called “the best SF novel published in English in the last ten years” by the American Book Review. He followed this with The Continent of Lies. Morrow's breakout novel was a satire on the nuclear arms race, This Is the Way the World Ends, which became a Nebula Award nominee and the BBC’s choice as the best SF novel of the year. His next dark comedy, Only Begotten Daughter, shared the 1991 World Fantasy Award with Ellen Kushner’s Thomas the Rhymer. Throughout the 1990s Morrow worked on the Godhead Trilogy: Towing Jehovah, Blameless in Abaddon, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year; and The Eternal Footman. Morrow then wrote the historical novels The Last Witchfinder, and its sequel, The Philosopher’s Apprentice. Morrow's contributions in short fiction also include a Nebula Award–winning story “The Deluge,” published in Bible Stories for Adults; the periodically produced one-act play “The Zombies of Montrose,” published in The Cat’s Pajamas; and the Nebula Award–winning novella, City of Truth.

James Morrow makes his home in State College, Pennsylvania with his wife and son.

James Morrow's website

This bio was last updated on 04/04/2016. We try to keep BookBrowse's biographies both up to date and accurate, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's a tough task. So, please help us - if the information about this author is out of date or inaccurate, and you know of a more complete source, please let us know. Authors and publishers: If you wish to make changes to a bio, send the complete biography as you would like it displayed so that we can replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Interview

James Morrow talks about The Last Witchfinder (a work of historical fiction set in the 17th century) and some of the key people and themes in the novel.

Book reviewers have categorized your previous novels as wild Vonnegutian satires full of fantastical and even surrealistic events. Why this sudden leap into straight historical fiction?
The leap was a long time coming. About twenty years ago I had a mind-boggling encounter with a single sentence in Masks of the Universe, a history of science by the physicist-astronomer Edward Harrison. At one point Harrison asserts that the “witch universe,” the zeitgeist of the late Renaissance, would have “destroyed European society but for the intervention of science.” And I said to myself, “What a great subject for a novel!” Even if Harrison was overstating the case, I simply had to explore that astonishing idea, the near destruction of a civilization by its own theology.

So you spent twenty years researching and writing The Last Witchfinder? You have a long attention span.
Not the past twenty years, no. I kept deferring the project, daunted by its scope, and composed other sorts of fiction instead. But I never stopped thinking about Harrison’s riveting sentence, and then about eight years ago I took the plunge and committed myself to writing a magnum opus about the shift from the “witch ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by James Morrow at BookBrowse
Galapagos Regained jacket The Madonna and the Starship jacket Shambling Towards Hiroshima jacket The Philosopher's Apprentice jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for James Morrow but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

We recommend 4 similar authors

View all 4 Readalikes

Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Word Is Murder
    The Word Is Murder
    by Anthony Horowitz
    A wealthy widow enters a London funeral home to make arrangements for her own funeral. Six hours ...
  • Book Jacket: Call Me American
    Call Me American
    by Abdi Nor Iftin
    As a boy growing up in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, Abdi Nor Iftin loved watching action ...
  • Book Jacket
    Driving Miss Norma
    by Ramie Liddle, Tim Bauerschmidt
    In my cultural life, I've met and been awed by two Normas: The demanding, clueless, fiercely ...
  • Book Jacket
    Driving Miss Norma
    by Ramie Liddle, Tim Bauerschmidt
    In my cultural life, I've met and been awed by two Normas: The demanding, clueless, fiercely ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Salt Houses by Hala Alyan

From a dazzling new literary voice, a debut novel about a Palestinian family caught between present and past.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    A Place for Us
    by Fatima Farheen Mirza

    A deeply moving story of love, identity and belonging--the first novel from Sarah Jessica Parker's new imprint.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win If You See Me, Don't Say Hi

If You See Me, Don't Say Hi by Neel Patel

Patel's stories introduce a bold and timely new literary voice.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

A P Saved I A P E

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.