top of page

David Grann: Best Selling Author and Kilachand’s Person-in-Residence

The famous author, whose highly acclaimed nonfiction was adapted into the Oscar-nominated ‘Killers of the Flower Moon,’ spends a weekend at Boston University.

By Allyn Tucker 

Photo By Ria Huang

This awards season, the hit movie Killers of the Flower Moon, directed by Martin Scorsese and featuring a star-studded cast, has been the talk of the town. The Academy Awards in March, where the film was nominated for the most prestigious award, Best Picture, was the grand finale of the film’s successful season. What casual movie enjoyers might not know, however, is that the film is actually an adaptation. 


Boston University graduate and author David Grann’s best-selling nonfiction book, Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI, was released in 2017 and earned recognition as one of the best nonfiction pieces of the year, according to TIME magazine. The plot, which follows the “Reign of Terror,” highlights the story of the horrific murders of Osage Indians in Oklahoma between 1921 and 1926. 


Grann explores the murders down to the most gritty of details, beginning with the book’s title. The source of the name, “Flower Moon,” is connected to “The Reign of Terror,” which started in May of 1921 and is represented by blooming flowers. Grann’s work, deriving its title from the importance of “the Flower Moon,” dissects white colonizer’s destruction and terrorization of Native American culture and tradition, shining light on a very under-discussed issue in America today.


As the Kilachand Honors College’s Person-in-Residence, Grann spent a weekend in Boston to meet with students, host discussions, and answer questions. During his writing career, he has become one of the most well-respected authors in the nonfiction literature scene, and his work is often considered for film adaptations, receiving five so far. Grann discussed his creative process, where he has nailed down representing those who have failed to have their stories told. In addition, as an advocate for this representation, Grann emphasized the importance of investigation and remembering our history.


Visiting Boston University, Grann not only spoke about Killers of the Flower Moon but also his newest work, The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder. Although his most recent nonfiction book, released in 2023, is not as widely known, Grann is most certainly not a one-hit wonder, and his record proves it. Both pieces, as well as his other works, are available at Barnes and Noble or online on Amazon.


bottom of page