Erik Larson Popular Books

Erik Larson Biography & Facts

Erik Larson (born January 3, 1954) is an American journalist and author of mostly nonfiction books. He has written a number of bestsellers, including The Devil in the White City (2003), about the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago and a series of murders by H. H. Holmes that were committed in the city around the time of the Fair. The Devil in the White City won the 2004 Edgar Award in the Best Fact Crime category, among other awards. Larson released his first novel in audiobook format only, titled No One Goes Alone, on September 28, 2021. Early life and education Larson was born in Brooklyn and grew up in Freeport, Long Island, New York. He studied Russian history at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated summa cum laude in 1976. After a year off, he attended the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, graduating in 1978. He was inspired to go into journalism after seeing the movie All the President's Men. Writing career Larson's first newspaper job was with the Bucks County Courier Times in Levittown, Pennsylvania, where he wrote about murder, witches, environmental poisons, and other "equally pleasant" things. He later became a features writer for The Wall Street Journal and Time, where he is still a contributing writer. His magazine stories have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, Harper's, and other publications. Books Larson has written a number of books, mostly historical nonfiction. In a 2016 interview with the Knoxville Mercury, Larson stated he does all of his own research, asking, "why should I let anybody else have that fun?" He included among his literary inspirations David McCullough, Barbara Tuchman, David Halberstam, and Walter Lord. Larson's 2006 book Thunderstruck intersperses the story of Hawley Harvey Crippen with that of Guglielmo Marconi and the invention of radio. Teaching and public speaking Larson has taught non-fiction writing at San Francisco State University, the Johns Hopkins Writing Seminars, and the University of Oregon, and he has spoken to audiences across the United States. Personal life Larson has lived in Philadelphia; Bristol, Pennsylvania; San Francisco; and Baltimore. He and his wife, Dr. Christine Gleason, have three daughters. They reside in New York City and maintain a home in Seattle, Washington. Works References External links Official website Appearances on C-SPAN. Discover the Erik Larson popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Erik Larson books.

Best Seller Erik Larson Books of 2024

  • The Road to Jonestown synopsis, comments

    The Road to Jonestown

    Jeff Guinn

    2018 Edgar Award FinalistBest Fact Crime“A thoroughly readable, thoroughly chilling account of a brilliant con man and his alltoo vulnerable prey” (The Boston Globe)the definitive ...

  • Munich, 1938 synopsis, comments

    Munich, 1938

    David Faber

    On September 30, 1938, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain flew back to London from his meeting in Munich with German Chancellor Adolf Hitler. As he disembarked from the air...

  • Ungentlemanly Warfare synopsis, comments

    Ungentlemanly Warfare

    Howard Linskey

    A secret assassin. An impossible mission. Failure is not an option.   1943. With Nazi Germany facing defeat, Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring has authorized mass production of ...

  • The Demon of Unrest synopsis, comments

    The Demon of Unrest

    Erik Larson

    The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Splendid and the Vile brings to life the pivotal five months between the election of Abraham Lincoln and the start of the Civil Wara...

  • Race Against Time synopsis, comments

    Race Against Time

    Jerry Mitchell

    “For almost two decades, investigative journalist Jerry Mitchell doggedly pursued the Klansmen responsible for some of the most notorious murders of the civil rights movement. This...

  • Without a Trace synopsis, comments

    Without a Trace

    Liza Marklund

    #1 New York Times and internationally bestselling Swedish author Liza Marklund delivers more topnotch, “edgeofyourseat suspense” (Harlan Coben) as her fearless journalist Annika Be...

  • The Devil in the White City synopsis, comments

    The Devil in the White City

    Erik Larson

    #1 NATIONAL BESTSELLER NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Splendid and the Vile comes the true tale of the 1893 World's Fair in Chi...

  • Dead Wake synopsis, comments

    Dead Wake

    Erik Larson

    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER From the bestselling author and master of narrative nonfiction comes the enthralling story of the sinking of the Lusitania“Both terrifying and en...

  • H. H. Holmes synopsis, comments

    H. H. Holmes

    Adam Selzer

    Shares with readers America’s first and most infamous serial killer and his diabolical killing spree during the 1893 World’s Fair in Chicago The first comprehensive book following...

  • The Swastika and Symbols of Hate synopsis, comments

    The Swastika and Symbols of Hate

    Steven Heller

    “Force[s] even the most sophisticated to rethink and rework their ideas of how images work in the world.” School Library Journal This is a classic story, masterfully told, in a new...

  • Sit-Down Comedy synopsis, comments

    Sit-Down Comedy

    John Fleming & Malcolm Hardee

    To satisfy the needs of the hundreds of thousands of people who pay good money to see standup every year, Malcolm Hardee ('the comedian's comedian' WHSmith Online; '...

  • Thunderstruck synopsis, comments


    Erik Larson

    A true story of love, murder, and the end of the world’s “great hush.”In Thunderstruck, Erik Larson tells the interwoven stories of two menHawley Crippen, a very unlikely murd...

  • In the Garden of Beasts synopsis, comments

    In the Garden of Beasts

    Erik Larson

    Erik Larson, New York Times bestselling author of Devil in the White City, delivers a remarkable story set during Hitler’s rise to power.The time is 1933, the place, Berlin, when W...

  • Esplendor y vileza synopsis, comments

    Esplendor y vileza

    Erik Larson

    Se diría que sabemos todo (o casi todo) de Winston Churchill. Y, sin embargo, como en toda vida, siempre se nos escapa algo. Y es ahí, en esos resquicios dejados de lado por la his...

  • Indianapolis synopsis, comments


    Lynn Vincent & Sara Vladic


  • The Organ Thieves synopsis, comments

    The Organ Thieves

    Chip Jones

    The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks meets Get Out in this “startling…powerful” (Kirkus Reviews) investigation of racial inequality at the core of the heart transplant race. In 196...

  • Northeaster synopsis, comments


    Cathie Pelletier

    A vivid and gripping story of an epic Maine snowstorm that tested the very limits of human endurance.For many, the past few years have been defined by climate disaster. Stories abo...

  • Quiet Dell synopsis, comments

    Quiet Dell

    Jayne Anne Phillips

    From the National Book Award longlisted author of Night Watch, a spectacularly riveting novel based on a reallife crime by a con man who preyed on widows: “a brilliant fusion of fa...

  • Lethal Passage synopsis, comments

    Lethal Passage

    Erik Larson

    This devastating book illuminates America's gun culture its manufacturers, dealers, buffs, and propagandists but also offers concrete solutions to our national epidemic of death ...

  • The Nazi Hunters synopsis, comments

    The Nazi Hunters

    Andrew Nagorski

    More than seven decades after the end of the Second World War, the era of the Nazi Hunters is drawing to a close. Their saga is finally told in this “deep and sweeping account of a...

  • Three Ordinary Girls synopsis, comments

    Three Ordinary Girls

    Tim Brady

    “The book's teenage protagonists and their bravery will enthrall young adults, who may find themselves inspired to take up their own causes.” Washington Post An astonishing Wo...

  • The American Spirit synopsis, comments

    The American Spirit

    David McCullough

    A New York Times BestsellerA timely collection of speeches by David McCullough, the most honored historian in the United Stateswinner of two Pulitzer Prizes, two National Book Awar...

  • The Splendid and the Vile synopsis, comments

    The Splendid and the Vile

    Erik Larson

    #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER The author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers an intimate chronicle of Winston Churchill an...

  • H. H. Holmes synopsis, comments

    H. H. Holmes

    Adam Selzer

    America's first and most notorious serial killer and his diabolical killing spree during the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago, now updated with a new afterword discussing Holmes' exhum...

  • Gangsters vs. Nazis synopsis, comments

    Gangsters vs. Nazis

    Michael Benson

    The stunning true story of the rise of Nazism in America in the years leading to WWIIand the fearless Jewish gangsters and crime families who joined forces to fight back. With an i...