William Dean Howells was born in Martin's Ferry, Ohio on March 1, 1837. He dropped out of school to work as a typesetter and a printer's apprentice. He taught himself through intensive reading and the study of Spanish, French, Latin, and German. He wrote a campaign biography of Abraham Lincoln in 1860. Lincoln appointed him U.S. consul in Venice, Italy in 1861 as a reward. After returning to the U.S. several years later, he became an assistant editor for The Atlantic Monthly, later becoming editor from 1871 to 1881. He also wrote columns for Harper's New Monthly Magazine and occasional pieces for The North American Review. As an editor and critic, he was a proponent of American realism. Although he wrote over a 100 books in various genres including novels, poems, literary criticism, plays, memoirs, and travel narratives, he is best known for his realistic fiction. His novels include A Modern Instance, The Rise of Silas Lapham, A Hazard of New Fortunes, The Undiscovered Country, A Chance Acquaintance, An Imperative Duty, Annie Kilburn, and The Coast of Bohemia. He received several honorary degrees from universities as well as a Gold Medal for fiction (later renamed after him as the Howells Medal) from the National Institute of Arts and Letters. He died from pneumonia on May 11, 1920.
It was a typical evening at a mall outside Portland, Maine. Three teenage friends waited for the movie to start. A boy flirted with the girl selling sunglasses. Mothers and children shopped together, and the manager at video game store tended to customers. Then the shooters arrived.
The chaos and carnage lasted only eight minutes before the killers were taken down. But for those who lived through it, the effects would last forever. In the years that followed, one would dedicate himself to a law enforcement career. Another would close herself off, trying to bury the memory of huddling in a ladies' room, helplessly clutching her cell phone--until she finally found a way to pour her emotions into her art.
But one person wasn't satisfied with the shockingly high death toll at the DownEast Mall. And as the survivors slowly heal, find shelter, and rebuild, they will discover that another conspirator is lying in wait--and this time, there might be nowhere safe to hide.