Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information


Pen Name: None

Genre: C:ADULT Fiction

Born: June 18, 1957 in Evanston, Illinois


Illinois Connection

Powers is an Evanston native. He moved with his family to Lincolnwood in the mid 60's. He graduated from DeKalb High School and attended the University of Illinois, where he later taught literature and creative writing until 2013.

Biographical and Professional Information

Richard Powers is a novelist whose works explore the effects of modern science and technology. While he lived most of his life in Illinois, Powers also lived in Bangkok, Boston, Holland and Cambridge. Most of his books have been inspired by events in his life and the places his life has taken him.

In 1992 Powers accepted a position as writer-in-residence at the University of Illinois and was named to Illinois's endowed Swanlund Chair in English in 1996 and named Center for Advanced Study Professor of English in 1999. In 2013, he left the University of Illinois to teach at Stanford. Today, he lives in the Great Smoky Mountains.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library


-- """The Overstory"""

-- *Pulitzer Prize in Fiction

-- *#1 New York Times Bestseller

-- *Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize

-- *New York Times Notable Book

-- *Best Book of the Year, Washington Post

-- *Best Book of the Year, Time

-- *Best Book of the Year, Oprah Magazine

-- *Best Book of the Year, Newsweek

-- *Best Book of the Year, Chicago Tribune

-- *Best Book of the Year, Kirkus


-- """Gain"""

-- *James Fenimore Cooper Prize, 1998


-- """The Gold Bug Variations"""

-- *TIME Magazine's Best Novel, 1991


-- """Plowing the Dark"""

-- *Vursell Award, 2000


-- """The Echo Maker"""

-- *National Book Award, 2006