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John Searles is an American writer and book critic. He is the author of three novels, the bestselling Boy Still Missing (ISBN 0-06-082243-0), Strange But True (ISBN 0-06-072179-0) and Help For The Haunted (ISBN 978-0060779634), published in September 2013. His essays have appeared in national magazines and newspapers, and he contributes frequently to morning television shows as a book critic. He is based in New York City.
Born and raised in New England, Searles is the son of a truck-driver and stay-at-home mother. After high school, Searles worked at the DuPont factory close to his hometown of Monroe, Connecticut. He went on to pursue an undergraduate degree from a Connecticut State University, becoming the first member of his family to graduate college, before entering a graduate program at New York University on a writing scholarship, where he won a number of fiction awards.
After completing his master's degree, Searles took a job at Redbook magazine reading fiction submissions. He soon moved on to a part-time job in the books department at Cosmopolitan, where he went on to hold many positions including Books Editor, Executive Editor, Editorial Brand Director and Editor-at-Large.
Upon the 2001 publication of Searles’ first novel, Boy Still Missing, TIME named him a “Person to Watch” and the New York Daily News named him a “New Yorker to Watch”. His second novel, Strange But True, was named the Best Book of 2004 by Salon.com. Searles’ most recent novel, Help for the Haunted, published by William Morrow/HarperCollins in September 2013, won the American Library Association Alex Award, was named as an Amazon Top 10 Mystery and Suspense Novel of 2013, a Boston Globe Top 10 Crime Novel of 2013, and an Entertainment Weekly Top Ten Must Read, and was hailed by author Gillian Flynn as “dazzling… a novel both frightening and beautiful”.
His essays have appeared in The Washington Post, the New York Times, and other national magazines and newspapers. He features frequently as a book critic on morning television shows including NBC's Today Show, CBS’s The Early Show, Live! With Regis and Kelly, Charlie Rose, and CNN to discuss his favorite book selections.
- "Getting Into the Spirit", New York Times, October 10, 2013
- Gillian Flynn Interviews John Searles
- Boston Globe Help for the Haunted Review October 26th, 2013
- Washington Post Review of Help for the Haunted September 22nd, 2013
- Miami Herald Review of Help for the Haunted September 15th, 2013
- HarperCollins Author page
- Interview with Algonquin Books, July 25, 2011
- Q & A with John Searles, Mediabistro.com, July 16, 2004
- "BOOKS OF THE TIMES; Ronnie's Awfully Fertile for a Dead Guy," New York Times Book Review, July 22, 2004
- Review of Strange But True, Salon.com, September 2, 2004
- "'Strange But True' is truly dark," USA Today, July 28, 2004
- "Authors 'phone it in' to appreciative book clubs," USA Today, January 4, 2006
- "John Searles' latest novel practically wrote itself after unsettling experience," Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 8, 2004
You can watch videos featuring John Searles by clicking here: