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James Lee Burke, winner of two Edgar awards, is the author of nineteen previous novels, many of them "New York Times" bestsellers, including "Cimmaron Rose", Cadillac Jukebox", & "Sunset Limited". He & his wife divide their time between Missoula, Montana, & New Iberia, Louisiana. (Publisher Provided) James Lee Burke was born in Houston, Texas on December 5, 1936. He received a B. A. in English and an M. A. from the University of Missouri in 1958 and 1960, respectively. Before becoming a full-time author, he worked as a land surveyor, newspaper reporter, college English professor, social worker, and instructor in the U. S. Job Corps. His novel The Lost Get-Back Boogie was rejected 111 times over a period of nine years, and upon publication was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. He writes the Dave Robicheaux series and the Billy Bob Holland series. He has won numerous awards including the CWA/Macallan Gold Dagger for fiction for Sunset Limited and the Edgar Award in 1989 for Black Cherry Blues and in 1997 for Cimarron Rose. His short stories have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, New Stories from the South, Best American Short Stories, Antioch Review, Southern Review, and The Kenyon Review. Two of his novels, Heaven's Prisoners and Two for Texas, have been made into motion pictures starring Alec Baldwin and Tommy Lee Jones, respectively. He made The New York Times High Profiles List with Wayfaring Stranger and The New Iberia Blues. (Bowker Author Biography)
— biography from The Neon Rain
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The Neon Rain 1,695 copies, 63 reviews
The Tin Roof Blowdown 1,638 copies, 67 reviews
Black Cherry Blues 1,352 copies, 33 reviews
In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead (Author) 1,264 copies, 31 reviews
Purple Cane Road 1,258 copies, 21 reviews
Dixie City Jam 1,180 copies, 15 reviews
Jolie Blon's Bounce 1,178 copies, 19 reviews
Pegasus Descending (Author) 1,151 copies, 27 reviews
Cadillac Jukebox 1,140 copies, 13 reviews
Sunset Limited 1,103 copies, 10 reviews
Crusader's Cross (Author) 1,091 copies, 28 reviews
Burning Angel 1,076 copies, 16 reviews
Swan Peak (Author) 1,073 copies, 34 reviews
A Morning for Flamingos (Author) 1,065 copies, 18 reviews
Last Car to Elysian Fields 1,058 copies, 15 reviews
Heaven's Prisoners (Author) 1,045 copies, 23 reviews
A Stained White Radiance (Author) 987 copies, 17 reviews
The Glass Rainbow 871 copies, 39 reviews
Cimarron Rose 859 copies, 11 reviews
Rain Gods 836 copies, 25 reviews
Bitterroot 820 copies, 13 reviews
Heartwood 738 copies, 8 reviews
In the Moon of Red Ponies 683 copies, 16 reviews
Creole Belle 625 copies, 28 reviews
White Doves at Morning 606 copies, 6 reviews
Feast Day of Fools 586 copies, 34 reviews
Light of the World 506 copies, 18 reviews
The Lost Get-Back Boogie 457 copies, 4 reviews
Wayfaring Stranger 435 copies, 17 reviews
Lay Down My Sword and Shield 393 copies, 9 reviews
Robicheaux 372 copies, 25 reviews
The New Iberia Blues 332 copies, 18 reviews
Half of Paradise 269 copies, 3 reviews
Jesus Out to Sea: Stories 261 copies, 10 reviews
The Jealous Kind 239 copies, 11 reviews
A Private Cathedral (Author) 225 copies, 17 reviews
Two for Texas 212 copies, 3 reviews
The Convict and Other Stories 201 copies, 4 reviews
To the Bright and Shining Sun 187 copies, 5 reviews
Another Kind of Eden 104 copies, 11 reviews
Every Cloak Rolled in Blood 49 copies, 6 reviews
Texas forever 5 copies
The Molester 3 copies
Mist 1 copy
2015 1 copy
1998 1 copy
The Best American Noir of the Century (Contributor) 316 copies, 6 reviews
The Best American Mystery Stories 2007 (Contributor) 175 copies, 5 reviews
The Best American Mystery Stories 2008 (Contributor) 157 copies, 2 reviews
The Best American Mystery Stories 2006 (Contributor) 143 copies, 1 review
The Best American Mystery Stories 2009 (Contributor) 105 copies, 3 reviews
The Best American Short Stories 1986 (Contributor) 85 copies
The Best American Mystery Stories 2014 (Contributor) 83 copies, 2 reviews
The Best American Mystery Stories 2018 (Contributor) 81 copies, 2 reviews
New Stories from the South 2007: The Year's Best (Contributor) 50 copies, 1 review
Delta Blues (Contributor) 48 copies
The Best American Mystery Stories 2020 (Contributor) 44 copies, 1 review
New Orleans Noir 2: The Classics (Contributor) 36 copies, 3 reviews

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James Lee Burke has 2 media appearances.

Jul
30
James Lee Burke's Fictional Take on Katrina
Day to Day, Monday, July 30, 2007 at 0am
Aug
11
'Rain Gods' Find Mystery Writer In New Territory
Morning Edition, Tuesday, August 11, 2009 at 0am

James Lee Burke has 7 past events. (show)

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Short biography
Burke's "The Lost Get Back Bookie" was rejected 111 times over 9 years before being published by LSU Press.

After publication, it was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.
James Lee Burke (born December 5, 1936) is an American author, best known for his Dave Robicheaux series. He has won Edgar Awards for Black Cherry Blues (1990) and Cimarron Rose (1998), and has also been presented with the Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America. The Robicheaux character has been portrayed twice on screen, first by Alec Baldwin (Heaven's Prisoners) and then Tommy Lee Jones (In the Electric Mist).

Wirt Williams, reviewing Burke's first novel, Half of Paradise (1965), in the New York Times, compared his writing to Jean Paul Satre and Ernest Hemingway, but concluded "Mr. Burkes literary forebear is Thomas Hardy."

Burke's 1982 novel, Two for Texas, was made into a 1998 TV movie of the same name. Burke has also written five miscellaneous crime novels (including Two for Texas), two short story collections, four books starring protagonist Texas attorney Billy Bob Holland, four books starring Billy Bob's cousin Texas sheriff Hackberry Holland, and two books starring Weldon Avery Holland, grandson of legendary Texas lawman Hackberry Holland.

Burke was born in Houston, Texas, but spent most of his childhood on the Texas-Louisiana Gulf Coast. He attended the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and University of Missouri, receiving a BA and MA in English Literature from the latter.

He worked in a variety of jobs over the years while books he had written were rejected, and books he had published went out of print. At various times he worked as a truck driver for the U.S. Forest Service, as a newspaper reporter, as a social worker on Skid Row, Los Angeles, as a land surveyor in Colorado, in the Louisiana State unemployment system, and in the Job Corps in the Daniel Boone National Forest in Eastern Kentucky.

He taught at five different colleges before getting on the tenure track teaching creative writing at Wichita State University during the 1980s.[citation needed]

Burke and his wife, Pearl (née Pai Chu, own a home in Lolo, Montana. The couple have four children, including Alafair Burke, a law professor and best-selling crime writer.
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