Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Kevin Davis  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Audience: Adult;

Born: in Chicago, Illinois


-- Website -- http://www.kevindavis.com
-- Kevin Davis on WorldCat -- http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=kevin++davis


Illinois Connection

Davis was born in Chicago. He attended the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and currently resides in Chicago, Illinois.

Biographical and Professional Information

Davis is an award-winning journalist, author and magazine writer. He is a former crime reporter for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, his writing has appeared in USA Today, the Chicago Tribune, Chicago magazine, Utne Reader, In These Times, American Bar Association Journal, Reader’s Digest, USA Weekend, Encyclopaedia Britannica and many other publications.Davis is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Chicago Graham School of Continuing Studies, as well as a part-time jourmalism instructor at Loyola University Chicago. He also teaches a writing class for detainees at the Cook County Jail. He has also worked as an editorial consultant for Northwestern Memorial Hospital and Loyola University Medical Center.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Wrong Man
ISBN: 0380778157

Avon Books. 1996

Follows the case of John Purvis, a forty-two-year-old mental patient who was coerced into confessing to the rape and murder of a woman in Fort Lauderdale and whose mother dedicated her time to proving his innocence. Original.

Defending the Damned: Inside a Dark Corner of the Criminal Justice System
ISBN: 0743270940

Atria Books. 2008

Chicago was the nation's deadliest city in 2001, recording 666 homicides. For lawyers in the Cook County Public Defender's Office Murder Task Force, that meant a steady flow of new clients. Eight out of ten people arrested for murder in Chicago are represented by public defenders. They're assigned the most challenging and seemingly hopeless cases, yet they always fight to win.

One of those lawyers is Marijane Placek, a snakeskin boot-wearing, Shakespeare-quoting nonconformist whose courtroom bravado and sharp legal skills have made her a well-known figure around the courthouse. When an ex-convict was arrested on charges of killing a Chicago police officer that deadly year, Placek got the high-profile case, and her defense forms the hub around which the book's narrative revolves.

Veteran journalist Kevin Davis reveals the compelling true story of a team of battle-scarred lawyers fighting against all odds. Unflinching, gripping, and full of surprises, Defending the Damned is an unforgettable human story and engaging courtroom drama where life and death hang in the balance. Davis explores the motives that compel these lawyers to come to work in this dark corner of the criminal justice system and exposes their insular and often misunderstood world.

This groundbreaking work comes at a time when the country has seen how wrongful convictions have slipped through the system, that innocent people have been sent to death row, and that some police have lied or coerced suspects into confessing to crimes they did not commit. Such flaws drive these public defenders even harder to do their jobs, providing scrutiny to a long ignored and often broken system.

Davis's reporting offers an unvarnished account of public defenders as never seen before. A powerful melding of courtroom drama and penetrating truecrime journalism, Defending the Damned is narrative nonfiction at its finest.


Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (No)