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Graham Moore Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Sherlockian (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Last Days of Night (2016) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Holdout (2020) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Graham Moore is an American historical fiction author and screenwriter. He is best known for “The Sherlockian,” the debut historical fiction novel he published in 2010 and “The Imitation Game” an Academy Award-winning television script that was based on a biography on Andrew Hodges. His mother was chief of staff for Michelle Obama while his father was an insurance defense lawyer. He was born and spent much of his childhood on the north side of Chicago and had a happy childhood despite the fact that his parents divorced when he was barely in his teens. In 2016, he published his second novel
“The Last Days of Night” that tells of the rivalry between George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison set in New York City in 1888. The story is told from the perspective of Paul Cravath who was attorney to Westinghouse. The novel was made into a film whose script was written by that Moore.

Growing up in North Chicago, Graham Moore got interested in mystery stories as a child when he would read Agatha Christie novels that his mother brought home. Since he always loved music, he intended to find a career in music and hence spent much of his time as a teenager playing and reading about various bands. When he joined Columbia University, he still wanted to work in music though he was starting to get interested in literature having attended classes where he read Western classics such as “The Odyssey” and “The Iliad.” However, his interest in music was stronger and thus he kept at it and when he graduated, he built a studio that he worked in with his friends. Moore was in charge of collecting equipment and was also sound engineer when he was not playing with a bunch of bands around New York. He had always been fascinated by Sherlock Holmes but something changed in 2004. A leading archeologist announced that they had found Arthur Conan Doyle’s diary which was something of a Holy Grail from Sherlock fans. He was so fascinated with the discovery that he started writing the manuscript for a novel that would later become “The Sherlockian.” Soon he was angling to become an author though he still worked in the studio to make rent and wrote whenever he had free time.

In 2004, Ben Epstein who was a student at New York University film school and Graham Moore’s best friend made an interesting suggestion. They had been out drinking and were just telling foolish jokes that got funnier as the night wore on. It had not been such a good joke when it all started but over the course of the night, it developed into an idea for a comedy. Moore had never written anything except for a few short stories and the manuscript for his first novel. However, Epstein was adamant that they had to write the script for the comedy he was making for MTV together. While he did not know anything about scriptwriting Graham thought it would be fun. And so for several years he became a scriptwriter during the day working with his friend Epstein and in the studio during the night. When their studio closed in 2008, he had made a few connections in Hollywood after having written several scripts. His agent invited him to go live in Los Angeles. At this time, all he wanted to do was write novels but the agent assured him that he would find him a job to pay the rent while he completed his novel. The agent paid his airfare and got him his first job writing on the staff of “10 Things I Hate About You” that was airing on ABC. “The Sherlockian” was published in 2010 even though he was still better known as a scriptwriter in Hollywood. He then published “The Last Days of Night” in 2016 to establish his name as one of the most promising literary authors.

Graham Moore’s “The Sherlockian” is set in 1893 where Londoners bought their magazines hoping to read of Sherlock Holmes’s next adventure, only to find that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had killed the indomitable detective. The unthinkable had happened and London descends into mourning with many railing against Doyle and crowds of people walked around sporting black armbands. But then Doyle had redeemed himself when in 1901 he resurrected the beloved detective. While he had insinuated that the death of Holmes in the novel “The Final Problem” was final, he never bothered to explain why he later changed his mind. After his death, the people in charge of his estate learned that one of his diaries was nowhere to be found. It went missing for decades and had become something of a “Holy Grail” for Sherlock Holmes fans. When Harold White is inducted into “The Baker Street Irregulars,” he is thrust into the search for the missing journal. But when a literary scholar is found dead supposedly murdered, Harold uses the methods and wisdom he had amassed from reading Holmes in a quest to find the killer and the missing journal.

Graham Moore’s “The Last Days of Night” is set in 1888, where the electric light just made its debut but many streets are still lit by the flicker of gas lamps. The person who controls the technology to convert night into day is set to make a vast fortune and write their name in the books of history. Paul Cravath who is a fresh-faced lawyer out of Columbia has just taken an almost impossible case. He is the attorney for George Westinghouse, who is being sued by Thomas Edison that accuses him of stealing his light bulb invention. By taking the case, he gets the opportunity to rub shoulders with the movers and shakers of New York who conduct insidious dealings in secret. His opponent Edison is a dangerous and wily man who has a lot of resources to call upon including newspapers, private spies and one of the richest men in America, J.P. Morgan. But just like Edison, the young lawyer is determined to win no matter the cost. In his obsessive quest for winning the case, he meets with the brilliant but eccentric inventor Nikola Tesla who may just be the man who knows how to beat Edison. Beautiful opera singer Agnes Huntington will also prove a great ally, though the risks he has to take are ever greater as no one is ever what they seem to be.

“The Holdout” by Graham Moore is the story of a fifteen-year-old heiress named Jessica Silver. She has just inherited a real estate fortune worth billions but then on her way home from school, she goes missing with the prime suspect a 25-year-old African American man named Bobby Nock. The ensuing trial traps straight into what preoccupies most Americans: law enforcement, race, sex, class and the garish sins of the famous and the rich. The prosecution believes that they have their man until a young woman named Maya Seale convinces he jurors that Nock did not commit the crime. But their “not guilty” verdict comes back to haunt all them for years. A decade later, the jury reassembles when a network pays them to do a docuseries and Maya who has gone back to school and is now an attorney also joins the series. But then one of the jurors turns up dead in Maya’s room and it seems someone is framing her for the murder. She now needs to get to the bottom of a case that seems to have taken a life of its own and prove her innocence while at it. The current investigation soon has threads tying into what happened ten years back as secrets threaten to be revealed putting all involved in danger.

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