Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  David Ellis  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Born: 1967 in Downers Grove, Illinois

Sites:


Illinois Connection

Ellis was born in Downers Grove and graduated from University of Illinois and Northwestern University Law School. He currently resides outside Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

David Ellis is a lawyer and award-winning author of over a dozen novels. As a lawyer, Dave prosecuted and convicted Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich in the Impeachment trial before the Illinois Senate. He has served as Special Counsel to the Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives and argued dozens of cases at the trial and appellate levels, specializing in constitutional law. In December, 2014, Ellis was sworn in as the youngest-serving Justice of the Illinois Appellate Court for the First District.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Hidden Man (Jason Kolarich)
ISBN: 0425237419

G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2011

Jason Kolarich is a Chicago attorney with a lineman's build, a razor- sharp intellect-and the grief of a tragic personal loss. When an estranged childhood friend is charged with murder, Kolarich must create a solid defense-even while doubting his client's innocence. But it soon becomes clear that Kolarich will have to uncover long-forgotten events from their shared childhoods to save his friend-and bring a relentless killer to justice before he strikes again.

Breach of Trust (A Jason Kolarich Novel)
ISBN: 0425245861

G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2012

On the night his wife and infant daughter died, attorney Jason Kolarich was awaiting a call from an informant. He blames himself not only for the deaths of his family, but for the informant's murder as well. Kolarich can't bring back his family, but he can find the person who killed the informant. And he discovers that his informant's murder was only the tip of the iceberg-and that exposing the truth will drag him into the fight of his life.

The Wrong Man (A Jason Kolarich Novel)
ISBN: 0425251942

G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2012

Criminal defense attorney Jason Kolarich returns in this shocking new thriller by the Edgar® Award–winning author.

A young paralegal is brutally killed. A homeless Iraq war veteran has been caught with the murder weapon and the victim’s belongings—and he can’t remember what happened…


Jason Kolarich has been asked by the young man’s aunt to defend him. It seems like a standard insanity defense based on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder—until Kolarich realizes that his client is actually innocent. The victim had been working a case of her own, following a trail of paper and money that connected international terrorists to corporate America, where there are those who want to teach the U.S. government a lesson.


Kolarich knows finding the true murderer is the key to exposing the conspiracy. As time grows short for both his client and thousands of innocent Americans, he races to find a trained killer and uncover the details of the attack. But Kolarich soon discovers that the game has already been rigged—and that he himself is about to become the next target…

The Last Alibi (A Jason Kolarich Novel)
ISBN: 0425267741

G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2014

Believing he’s the target of a frame-up, geeky loner James Drinker hires defense attorney Jason Kolarich to take his case. Two women he knows have recently been murdered, seemingly by the same killer, and Drinker thinks he’ll be the police’s main suspect. Something about Drinker seems off from the start, but Kolarich doesn’t give it too much thought. Until another murder occurs. And then another.


As he begins to probe his client’s life and story more closely, it quickly becomes clear that nothing about James Drinker is what it seems…and the target of the frame-up isn’t Drinker, but Kolarich.


Faced with a murder charge and unable to prove his own innocence without breaking his sworn attorney-client privilege, Jason Kolarich must hunt for the truth about James Drinker, the series of brutal killings, and why he’s been set up to take the fall.

The answers will be beyond anything he could have imagined.

Line of Vision
ISBN: 0425183769

G.P. Putnam's Sons. 2002

David Ellis’ Line of Vision has won the 2002 Edgar Award for Best First Novel by an American Author!

Marty Kalish has been accused of murdering his lover's husband. He had a motive. He was at the scene of the crime. He manipulated evidence to hide his guilt. He even confessed. But that's not the end of the story. That's only the beginning.

Life Sentence
ISBN: 0399149791

Putnam. 2003

Line of Vision, David Ellis's debut, garnered resounding praise. "Expertly written [and] intricately plotted," hailed the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "A surprisingly fresh take on the legal thriller" (San Francisco Chronicle), it inspired words like "seductive" (BookPage), "spellbinding" (Publishers Weekly), and "stylish" (Kirkus Reviews).

In Life Sentence, Ellis brings us a second legal thriller, again evocatively set in an unnamed Chicago, in a Byzantine world of big-city politics full of payback and promise, ambition and disgrace. Jon Soliday is legal counsel to a powerful politician-also his childhood best friend-who is running for governor. The two have shared political success and undying loyalty. They also share a dark secret from the summer of 1979: a party that resulted in the death of a teenage girl. Soliday was implicated but, through his friend's political connections, escaped legal trouble.

Soliday remembers little from that night, but carries an uncertain guilt he can't shake. Now, as the players from 1979 fall prey to an unknown killer, Soliday is himself accused of murder. And as the puzzle unfolds, the people he most suspects are those he has entrusted with his defense-his ambitious defense attorney and his oldest friend.

A man's past, both what he remembers and what he fears, has never felt so crushing-and may well leave him without a future.

Jury of One (Ellis, David)
ISBN: 0399151494

Putnam Adult. 2004

Shelly Trotter, the daughter of the state governor and a children's rights advocate, comes to the aid of a seventeen-year-old former client accused of killing a police officer, only to discover that the boy had become caught up in an undercover sting to trap corrupt cops and that he claims to be the son she had given up for private adoption years before. 20,000 first printing.

In the Company of Liars
ISBN: 0399152474

Putnam Adult. 2005

A thriller told in reverse centers on a woman who is undergoing a murder trial that is being overseen by a prosecutor who is strongly pursuing a death penalty and an FBI agent who would force the defendant to betray her family. By the Edgar Award-winning author of Line of Vision. 50,000 first printing.

Eye of the Beholder
ISBN: 0399154337

Putnam Adult. 2007

Having built a successful career based on his famous prosecution of a serial killer fifteen years earlier, attorney Paul Riley realizes that his past case has eerie ties to a new series of murders and that the killer has an agenda aimed specifically at Paul himself. By the Edgar Award-winning author of Line of Vision. 75,000 first printing.

Guilty Wives
ISBN: 0446571881

Vision. 2013

After a lavish night of guilty pleasures in Monte Carlo, four best friends face an awful morning of arrests-and a fight for survival.

Only minutes after Abbie Elliot and her three best friends step off of a private helicopter, they enter the most luxurious, sumptuous, sensually pampering hotel they have ever been to. Their lavish presidential suite overlooks Monte Carlo, and they surrender: to the sun and pool, to the sashimi and sake, to the Bruno Paillard champagne. As the weekend moves into pulsating discos, high-stakes casinos, and beyond, Abbie is transported to the greatest pleasure and release she has ever known.

In the morning's harsh light, Abbie awakens on a yacht, surrounded by police. Something awful has happened: something impossible, unthinkable. Abbie, Winnie, Serena, and Bryah are arrested and accused of the foulest crime imaginable. And now the vacation of a lifetime becomes the fight of a lifetime-a fight for survival. Guilty Wives is the ultimate indulgence, the kind of nonstop joy-ride of excess, friendship, betrayal, and danger that only James Patterson can create.

Mistress
ISBN: 1455515892

Grand Central Publishing. 2014

James Patterson's scariest, sexiest stand-alone thriller since The Quickie.

Ben isn't like most people. Unable to control his racing thoughts, he's a man consumed by his obsessions: movies, motorcycles, presidential trivia-and Diana Hotchkiss, a beautiful woman Ben knows he can never have.

When Diana is found dead outside her apartment, Ben's infatuation drives him on a hunt to find out what happened to the love of his life.

Ben soon discovers that the woman he pined for was hiding a shocking double life. And now someone is out to stop Ben from uncovering the truth about Diana's illicit affairs.

In his most heart-pumping thriller yet, James Patterson plunges us into the depths of a mind tortured by paranoia and obsession, on an action-packed chase through a world of danger and deceit.

Invisible
ISBN: 1455585033

Grand Central Publishing. 2015

Everyone thinks Emmy Dockery is crazy. Obsessed with finding the link between hundreds of unsolved cases, Emmy has taken leave from her job as an FBI researcher. Now all she has are the newspaper clippings that wallpaper her bedroom, and her recurring nightmares of an all-consuming fire.

Not even Emmy's ex-boyfriend, field agent Harrison "Books" Bookman, will believe her that hundreds of kidnappings, rapes, and murders are all connected. That is, until Emmy finds a piece of evidence he can't afford to ignore. More murders are reported by the day--and they're all inexplicable. No motives, no murder weapons, no suspects. Could one person really be responsible for these unthinkable crimes?

INVISIBLE is James Patterson's scariest, most chilling stand-alone thriller yet.

The Murder House
ISBN: 0316410985

Little, Brown and Company. 2015

It has an ocean-front view, a private beach--and a deadly secret that won't stay buried.

No. 7 Ocean Drive is a gorgeous, multi-million-dollar beachfront estate in the Hamptons, where money and privilege know no bounds. But its beautiful gothic exterior hides a horrific past: it was the scene of a series of depraved killings that have never been solved. Neglected, empty, and rumored to be cursed, it's known as the Murder House, and locals keep their distance.

Detective Jenna Murphy used to consider herself a local, but she hasn't been back since she was a girl. Trying to escape her troubled past and rehabilitate a career on the rocks, the former New York City cop hardly expects her lush and wealthy surroundings to be a hotbed of grisly depravity. But when a Hollywood power broker and his mistress are found dead in the abandoned Murder House, the gruesome crime scene rivals anything Jenna experienced in Manhattan. And what at first seems like an open and shut case turns out to have as many shocking secrets as the Murder House itself, as Jenna quickly realizes that the mansion's history is much darker than even the town's most salacious gossips could have imagined. As more bodies surface, and the secret that Jenna has tried desperately to escape closes in on her, she must risk her own life to expose the truth--before the Murder House claims another victim.

Full of the twists and turns that have made James Patterson the world's #1 bestselling writer, THE MURDER HOUSE is a chilling, page-turning story of murder, money, and revenge.


Awards

-- '''''Line of Vision''''' -- *Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best First Novel by an American Author, 2002

-- '''''The Hidden Man''''' -- *Publishers Weekly Starred Review

-- *2016 ILLINOIS READS Book