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Scott Turow, January 2008

Scott Frederick Turow[1] (born April 12, 1949) is an American author and a practicing lawyer. Turow has written nine fiction and two nonfiction books, which have been translated into over 20 languages and have sold over 25 million copies. Movies have been based on several of his books.

Life and career[edit]

Turow was born in Chicago, to a family of Russian Jewish descent.[2] He attended New Trier High School, and graduated from Amherst College in 1970, as a Brother of the Alpha Delta Phi Literary Society. He received an Edith Mirrielees Fellowship to the Stanford University Creative Writing Center, where he attended from 1970 to 1972. In 1971, he married Annette Weisberg, a painter. They divorced thirty-five years later.

Scott Turow later became a Jones Lecturer at Stanford, serving until 1975, when he entered Harvard Law School. In 1977, Turow wrote One L, a book about his first year at law school. After earning his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree in 1978, Turow became an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Chicago, serving in that position until 1986. There he prosecuted several high-profile corruption cases, including the tax fraud case of state Attorney General William Scott. Turow also was lead counsel in Operation Greylord, the federal prosecution of Illinois judicial corruption cases.

After leaving the U.S. Attorney's office, Turow became a novelist, beginning to write legal thrillers starting with The Burden of Proof, Presumed Innocent, Pleading Guilty, and Personal Injuries, which Time magazine named as the Best Fiction Novel of 1999. All four became bestsellers, and Turow won multiple literary awards, most notably the Silver Dagger Award of the British Crime Writers' Association.

In these Kindle County novels, many of the characters appear in more than one book. The state is unspecified, but the books tell that the county contains a tri-city conglomerate on the Kindle River, a river that flows eventually into the Mississippi, somewhere between Chicago and New Orleans [Burden of Proof Chapter 3]; compare the "Quad Cities" on the Mississippi, originally Davenport IA, Rock Island IL, Moline IL, and East Moline IL, but now also including Bettendorf IA. There are also some similarities with the Twin Cities on the Mississippi, Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. Like the Twin Cities, the Tri-Cities are part of a conurbation of about three million people, and the predominant political party there is the Democratic Farmers-and-Union Party (DFU), whose name resembles that of the Democratic Farmer-Labor Party (DFL) in Minnesota.

In 1990, Turow was featured on the June 11 cover of Time, which described him as "Bard of the Litigious Age".[3] In 1995, Canadian author Derek Lundy published a biography of Turow, entitled Scott Turow: Meeting the Enemy (ECW Press, 1995). In the 1990s a British publisher bracketed Turow’s work with that of Margaret Atwood and John Irving, republished in the series Bloomsbury Modern Library.

Turow was elected the president of the Authors Guild in 2010[4] and was previously president from 1997 to 1998.[citation needed] As the Authors Guild president he has been criticized for his copyright maximalist and anti-ebook stance.[5]

From 1997 to 1998 Turow was a member of the U.S. Senate Nominations Commission for the Northern District of Illinois, which recommends federal judicial appointments. In 2011, Turow met with Harvard Law School professor Lawrence Lessig to discuss political reform including a possible Second Constitution of the United States; according to one source, Turow saw risks with having such a convention, but believed that it may be the "only alternative" given how campaign money has undermined the one-man-one-vote principle of democracy.[6]

Turow is a partner of the international law firm Dentons having been a partner of one of its constituents, the Chicago law firm of Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal. Turow works pro bono in most of his cases, including a 1995 case where he won the release of Alejandro Hernandez, who had spent 11 years on death row for a murder he did not commit. He was also appointed to the commission considering the reform of the Illinois death penalty by former Governor George Ryan and is currently a member of the Illinois State Police Merit Board.


Turow at the Miami Book Fair International, 1993




His non-fiction novel Ultimate Punishment also received the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights 2003 Book award given annually to a novelist who "most faithfully and forcefully reflects Robert Kennedy's purposes - his concern for the poor and the powerless, his struggle for honest and even-handed justice, his conviction that a decent society must assure all young people a fair chance, and his faith that a free democracy can act to remedy disparities of power and opportunity."[8]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Scott Frederick Turow". Cookcountyclerk.com. 1949-12-04. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  2. ^ "Scott Turow: a critical companion - Andrew F. MacDonald, Gina Macdonald - Google Books". Books.google.ca. 1949-04-12. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  3. ^ "Burden of Success". TIME (Time Inc.) 135 (24). 1990-06-11. Retrieved 2009-03-29. 
  4. ^ http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/04/28/scott-turow-elected-president-of-the-authors-guild/?src=busln
  5. ^ "Authors Guild's Scott Turow: The Supreme Court, Google, Ebooks, Libraries & Amazon Are All Destroying Authors". Techdirt. Retrieved 2013-04-09. 
  6. ^ JAMES WARREN of The Chicago News Cooperative (December 10, 2011). "Let’s Do Something About Privilege, Donors, Corporations and the Constitution". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-23. 
  7. ^ "Hard Listening". 
  8. ^ . RFKcenter.org http://rfkcenter.org/book-award?lang=en.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scott_Turow — Please support Wikipedia.
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2784 videos foundNext > 

Legally Speaking: Scott Turow

Writer and attorney Scott Turow is the author of nine best-selling novels. He reflects on his work as a fiction writer and a practicing attorney with UC Hast...

Scott Turow talks his latest thriller novel, "Identical"

Author Scott Turow, who is also a practicing attorney, joins the "CBS This Morning" co-hosts to discuss his new legal thriller "Identical," as well as book p...

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Best-selling novelist and criminal lawyer Scott Turow provides a vivid account of the evolution of his views on capital punishment in Ultimate Punishment: A ...

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Scott Turow, author and president of the Authors Guild, presents his thoughts on the authors in the digital age of publishing and discusses his soon-to-be pu...

Charlie Rose - Scott Turow

Scott Turow, attorney and author of mystery suspense novels discusses his book 'Innocent'

Scott Turow - using his legal background for his novels

Author and practicing lawyer Scott Turow's latest legal thriller is "Personal Injuries", the plot for which Turow drew from his experience as a former federa...

Scott Turow: 2010 National Book Festival

Author Scott Turow presents at the 2010 National Book Festival. Speaker Biography: Scott Turow is a writer as well as an attorney. He is the author of eight ...

Scott Turow Talks About His New Novel "Identical"

Scott Turow's new novel, "Identical," features a pair of twins who could not be more different: one's a billionaire, one's fresh out of prison after serving ...

Scott Turow interview at the American Resource Center in Helsinki

American author Scott Turow visited Helsinki, Finland on January 30-31, 2014. He met with Amy Hirsch of the U.S. Embassy to talk about his new book and career.

Midtown Review - Scott Turow Interview

Host Dana Barrett interviews New York Times Bestselling author Scott Turow about his new book IDENTICAL.

2784 videos foundNext > 

232 news items

Chicago Reader

Chicago Reader
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 04:15:00 -0700

In conjunction with World Book Night, local author Scott Turow (Presumed Innocent, Identical) speaks at Sulzer Regional Library. World Book Night encourages readers to hand out free books in their communities in order to provide literary inspiration to ...
Chicago Tribune (blog)
Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:01:36 -0700

Short stories and podcasts may hold one's attention for a bus ride to work, but a trip across country calls for mightier stuff. For me, it came in the form of an audiobook of Scott Turow's "Identical," which takes the reader on an excursion into Turow ...
OC Weekly (blog)
Fri, 18 Apr 2014 06:42:04 -0700

UC Irvine law school students find out this evening what they should do with their post-lawyering days--you know, when they can really make the big bucks--as lawyer-turned-bestselling novelist Scott Turow (Presumed Innocent, The Burden of Proof) shares ...
Evanston Review
Tue, 01 Apr 2014 10:17:10 -0700

Author and lawyer Scott Turow, an Evanston resident of nearly seven years, appeared Monday in Northbrook at Max & Benny's Deli for the Chicago Jewish Authors Literary Series, sponsored by the restaurant at 461 Waukegan Road. The series, which began ...
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 14:16:27 -0700

Scott Turow, bestselling author of legal thrillers, will speak at 7 p.m. the Sulzer Regional Library, 4455 N. Lincoln. Ave. Turow's “Presumed Innocent” is one of this year's World Book Night selections. Seating is limited and available on first come ...
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 21:07:30 -0700

His article primarily discusses lawyers who write fiction about courtroom drama: for example, John Grisham, Scott Turow, James Patterson, David Baldacci, and Lisa Scottoline. But attorneys have also turned to writing in the romance genre. Many have hit ...
Broadway World
Tue, 22 Apr 2014 07:15:00 -0700

The books range from older classics like Catch-22 by Joseph Heller and After the Funeral by Agatha Christie to more recent popular titles such as Presumed Innocent by Scott Turow, Waiting to Exhale by Terry McMillan, Tales of the City by Armistead ...
Lincolnwood Review
Tue, 25 Mar 2014 13:48:45 -0700

Kissinger did not provide a customary keynote speech last week at the Hyatt Regency Chicago, but instead, answered questions on stage from well-known author Scott Turow for about 30 minutes. The German-born Kissinger said anyone who has survived ...

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