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The Things They Carried, common reading this summer for Class of 2008
Bethlehem, Pa.—Award–winning novelist Tim O’Brien will address freshmen students at Moravian College’s orientation program on Sunday, August 29. The incoming class of 2008 were assigned O’Brien’s book, The Things They Carried, as their common reading this summer.
O’Brien is the author of Going After Cacciato, which received the National Book Award in fiction, and The Things They Carried, which won France’s Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger and was also a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. In 1987, he received the National Magazine Award for The Things They Carried, and in 1999 the same story was selected for inclusion in The Best American Short Stores of the Century edited by John Updike.
In the novel, Lake of the Woods, a work of fiction published in 1994, he received the James Fenimore Cooper Prize from the Society of American Historians and was named best novel of the year by Time magazine.
Other books include If I Die in a Combat Zone, Northern Lights, The Nuclear Age, Tomcat in Love and July, July. His short fiction has appeared in numerous literary and popular magazines, including the New Yorker, Esquire, Haper’s, The Atlantic, Playboy, and Ploughshares, and in several editions of The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories.
O’Brien was born in Austin, Minnesota and graduated summa cum laude from Macalester College in 1968. He served as an infantryman with the U.S. Army in Vietnam, after which he pursued graduate studies in Government at Harvard University. He worked as a national affairs reporter for The Washington Post. He is the recipient of literary awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. He has been elected to both the Society of American Historians and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Currently he holds the Roy F. and Joann Cole Mitte Chair in Creative Writing at Texas State University.