Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information


Pen Name: None

Genre: C:ADULT Fiction

Born: May 12, 1939 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania



Illinois Connection

Brown moved to Chicago in 1995 and still resides there. She now teaches in the MFA in Writing Program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and lives in Mr. Obama’s neighborhood, overlooking Lake Michigan.

Biographical and Professional Information

Rosellen Brown is the author of the novels Civil Wars, Half a Heart, Tender Mercies, Before and After, and six other books. Her stories have appeared frequently in O. Henry Prize Stories, Best American Short Stories and Best Short Stories of the Century. Her novel Before and After was adapted into a major motion picture starring Meryl Streep and Liam Neeson.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library


-- """The Lake on Fire"""

-- *Best Fiction of the Year, Kirkus, 2018

-- *Fall Preview: The 20 Books You Need to Read This Season, Entertainment Weekly

-- *What to Read This Week, Newsday

-- *5 Hot Books, The National Book Review

-- *Best of the Best Books of the Year, Chicago Public Library, 2018

-- *Montaigne Medal Finalist, Eric Hoffer Book Award, 2019

-- *Official Selection, Reading Group Choices 2020

-- *Starred Review, Kirkus

-- *Starred Review, Booklist

-- *Starred Review, Publishers Weekly


-- """Other Awards and Honors"""

-- *Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize, 1984

-- *Fuller Award for Lifetime Achievement, Chicago Literary Hall of Fame