Author Series: Maurice Chammah

Photos of author Maurice Chammah and his book

Meet the Author!

Author Maurice Chammah will discuss his book " Let the Lord Sort Them: The Rise and Fall of the Death Penalty.” A Q&A session and book signing will follow the presentation. The Dock will provide books for purchase that may be signed by the author. Chammah will be in person at the East Regional Library during the event.

Register for the online presentation


About the book

From presidential debate stages to family dinner tables, the death penalty is often simplified to a matter of pro or anti. In "Let the Lord Sort Them Out," author Maurice Chammah transcends that simple duality with a riveting cultural and historical context. Deeply reported and impeccably researched, Chammah’s poignant book illuminates what capital punishment tells us about United States history and its justice system, at a time when many are turning a critical eye towards that system and explores how Americans understand crime, mercy and redemption.

Texas - “the capital of capital punishment” — serves as the lens through which Chammah explores the death penalty’s tumultuous history. He explores the state’s early history of vigilante justice, and how harsh and quick punishment like lynchings fell predominantly on oppressed groups — Black Texans most of all. But this story is not only about Texas: the state has been a guiding light for the punitive strain in American culture as a whole, a strain that our country has now begun to question.

Over the course of researching his book, Chammah read thousands of pages of court records and spoke with nearly 200 sources connected to these cases. The result is a series of richly detailed profiles of lawyers who have dedicated their careers to death row cases, as well as family members of murder victims, executioners, and those convicted of capital crimes (some fairly, some not). Throughout this epic book, Chammah raises questions that don’t have clear answers and reveals a labyrinthine court system rife with human bias, legal loopholes, and archaic ideals of justice.


About the author

Maurice Chammah is a journalist and staff writer for The Marshall Project. His reporting on the criminal justice system has been published by The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Atlantic, Esquire, and Mother Jones. He received the 2019 J. Anthony Lukas Work-In-Progress Book Award.


  • Thursday, December 08, 2022 | 06:30 PM - 08:00 PM


Fort Worth Public Library - East Regional, 6301 Bridge St., Fort Worth 76112  View Map

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