Scott Turow

Scott Turow

:"For Polish place names, see Turów."

Scott Turow (born April 12, 1949) is an American author as well as a practicing lawyer. Turow has written eight 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.


Turow was born in Chicago, attended New Trier High School, and graduated from Amherst College in 1970. 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 Turow, a painter.

Turow later became a 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, writing his famous legal thrillers, including "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. All of his novels take place in Kindle County, and many of the characters appear in multiple books. In 1990, Turow was featured on the June 11 cover of "Time" magazine, which described him as the "Bard of the Litigious Age." In 1995, Canadian author Derek Lundy published a biography of Turow, entitled "Scott Turow: Meeting the Enemy" (ECW Press, 1995).

Turow was the president of the Authors Guild from 1997 to 1998 and continues to serve on its board. During the same two-year period, Turow was a member of the U.S. Senate Nominations Commission for the Northern District of Illinois, which recommends federal judicial appointments.

Turow is a partner of 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. He and his wife Annette divorced in late 2008 with three grown children.



* "Presumed Innocent", 1987
* "The Burden of Proof", 1990
* "Pleading Guilty", 1993
* "The Laws of Our Fathers", 1996
* "Personal Injuries", 1999
* "Reversible Errors", 2002
* "Ordinary Heroes", 2005
* "Limitations", 2006


* "One L", 1977
* "", 2003


* "Presumed Innocent", 1990
* "The Burden of Proof", 1992
* "Reversible Errors", 2004

ee also

* Kindle County
* List of bestselling novels in the United States

External links

* [ Official website]
* [ 1990 audio interview] by Don Swaim
* [ A reading from "The Laws of Our Fathers" by Scott Turow]
* [ Interview] on "Ordinary Heroes" at the Pritzker Military Library

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