The Last Days of Night by Graham Moore

Obsessive himself, Graham Moore, who won an Oscar for his screenplay The Imitation Game, immersed himself in 19th century Manhattan
THE LAST DAYS OF NIGHTto write The Last Days of Night (Random House 2016; $28), his historic tale about the lawsuit between two other obsessive and driven people–Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse–over who invented the lightbulb. Though it may seem like a minor question, the court’s decision would determine which of these powerhouses held the right to light up America and earn billions while doing so. It takes us to the time when darkness prevailed and people viewed Edison as “The Wizard” because of the magic of electricity.

“I am so paranoid that there’s something I missed,” says Moore, explaining why he spent a year and a half digging deep in archives, scientific and engineering journals of the time. It took another four years or so to write and even then Moore would often stop to peruse more census data or old newspapers. His book centers on 26-year-old Paul Cravath, a recent graduate of Columbia Law School who finds himself handling the lawsuit on behalf of Westinghouse.

Moore, a Chicago native and the New York Times bestselling author of The Sherlockian, sees some parallels between Cravath and himself.

Graham Moore © Matt Sayles“We were both the same age. When I started this book, I was just beginning my career as a writer; Paul was just starting his career, we were both trying to hold our own and not let them know we were afraid,” he says, adding that he’s a big admirer of the writing of Erik Larson, author of The Devil in the White City.

Though his book isn’t due to be released until the 16th, Moore is already working on the film adaptation. The movie stars one of Moore’s favorite actors, Eddie Redmayne.

“I’m very passionate about making popular art—films and books,” he says. “My great dream about this book is that it starts conversations—that it connects. I want to write fiction that invites people in.”


What:  Oscar winner Graham Moore book signing

When: Thursday, August 8 at 7 p.m.

Where: The Book Cellar, 4736 N Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL

Cost: Free

FYI: (773) 293-2665;






Author: Jane Simon Ammeson

Jane Simon Ammeson is a freelance writer who specializes in travel, food and personalities. She writes frequently for The Times of Northwest Indiana, Kentucky Living magazine, Edible Michiana, Lakeland Boating, Experience Michigan magazine, Indiana Monthly, Cleveland Magazine, Long Weekends Magazine, Food, Wine, Travel magazine and the Herald Palladium where she has a weekly food column. Her TouchScreenTravels include Indiana's Best. She also writes a weekly book review column for The Times of Northwest Indiana as well as food and travel, has authored 16 books including Lincoln Road Trip: The Back-road Guide to America's Favorite President was the winner of the Lowell Thomas Journalism Award in Travel Books, Third Place and also a Finalist for the 2019 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Awards in the Travel category. Her latest books are America's Femme Fatale: The Story of Serial Killer Belle Gunness and Classic Restaurants of Northwest Indiana. Her other books include How to Murder Your Wealthy Lovers and Get Away with It, A Jazz Age Murder in Northwest Indiana and Murders That Made Headlines: Crimes of Indiana, all historic true crime as well Hauntings of the Underground Railroad: Ghosts of the Midwest, Brown County, Indiana and East Chicago. Jane’s base camp is Stevensville, Michigan on the shores of Lake Michigan. Follow Jane at;;;, and on her travel and food blog and book blog:

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