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Michael Throws the First Pitch at Yankee Stadium


It was an unbelievable honor to throw out the first pitch at Yankee Stadium last night (went with my patented side-splitter). I’m most grateful to the Yankees and Hachette Book Group for the chance. Unforgettable night.




For the record, equipment used: 1) Cavaliers bag to carry glove, #believeland; 2) my agent’s first little league glove, Andy Carey model, a piece of vintage Yanks history; 3) Baseball cap from the Cooke City General Store in Cooke City, Montana.

Was it a strike? Well let me assure you of this: nobody in the majors has even made contact with a pitch like it this year! Many thanks to all involved.

Watch Michael’s First Pitch!

Michael at Yankee Stadium

Michael at Yankee Stadium Michael at Yankee Stadium

Michael Makes History with E-Book Giveaway

Article from  Shelf Awareness June 28, 2016:


In an unusual book-and-baseball promotion, the first 10,000 fans 18 years and older at tonight’s game between the New York Yankees and the Texas Rangers (go, Yanks!) at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, N.Y., will receive a free e-book edition of The Prophet by Michael Koryta, who will also throw out the ceremonial first pitch. The giveaway is part

of the Yankees’ New York Times First Pitch Series and is sponsored by Little, Brown and Hachette Book Group, which calls this “the first e-book giveaway ever at a major sporting event.”


Fans will receive cards with a promotion code. On Bookshout, the publisher’s redemption partner, fans can enter the promotion code and receive the e-book, which can be read on a desktop, mobile phone or tablet.


“Reading today takes place in so many places–at home before bed but also in line at the grocery store. Why not during the seventh inning stretch?” said Heather Fain, senior v-p, marketing strategy, Hachette Book Group. “Hachette is always looking for new ways to engage readers, introduce them to writers they haven’t tried, and make it easy to always have a great book on hand. Working with the Yankees allows us to challenge the notion of what is and isn’t the ‘right’ time to read.”

Early Reviews are Coming in on RISE THE DARK

“A frightening thriller about the holes in our infrastructure and the security protecting it. In this second Markus Novak novel, following 2015’s Last Words, Koryta effectively combines a compelling premise, a villain who seems too smart to be stopped, and a revealing look at the hero’s dysfunctional family.”



“As with his spellbinding 2014 effort, Those Who Wish Me Dead, Koryta employs the desolate Montana setting with such mastery and deep sense of mystery that it’s a compelling character itself. And with an intriguing coda that reverberates with themes of family, myth, and psychic possibility, this new novel leaves us keenly anticipating the next installment of the Novak saga. Again proving himself one of today’s top thriller writers, Koryta creates edgy suspense not with trickery but with characters who test the limits of their courage.”

-Kirkus Reviews — Starred Review



How Flickering Lights Inspired Rise the Dark

Ever wonder why the lights will blink in your home during a storm before they go out for good? Ever wonder where the idea for a novel came from?

lightning3-1024x585With Rise the Dark, the answers are one and the same.  Writers often struggle to explain where a book came from, that dreaded “where do you get your ideas” question. For once, I actually know —this one starts with those blinking lights.

Those mini-outages occur because a device called a recloser is working on the lines, testing the severity of the fault, trying to self-heal before shutting down altogether. I learned this rule early, as my father was an electrical engineer at Indiana University, and if our lights went out, it was likely that he’d be headed out the door to deal with similar problems on campus. Most electrical systems will try to restore current twice before shutting down altogether. Three strikes, then you’re out.

I always intended to write about this. Like many things, it was a matter of one idea meeting up with another along the road and then bumping into a character. With Markus Novak, I knew I had a character with a lot of miles behind him, and many more out in front. He was on a single-minded quest, and the darkness that had been referenced to him by both his murdered wife and by an accused murderer in rural caves didn’t jibe with any particular sense of a larger darkness — not to Markus, at least. Not yet.

That’s the way I tend to find stories. A memory meets a place meets a character. There’s a moment of convergence, when disparate ideas collide and begin to make sense in a way that suggests they’ve always been there, just waiting to be discovered. I absolutely understand what Stephen King means in On Writing when he refers to stories being found things, like fossils. The question is where did you first encounter this particular fossil?

For me, it’s here in the early pages of Rise the Dark, as the lights blink on and off in a tiny Montana mountain town, and for Sabrina Baldwin, the sensation is like a knock at the door, the outside world arriving and announcing itself: There’s some trouble out here, and it’s not going to stay out here. It’s going to step inside soon.

You can find a second excerpt of Rise The Dark here. That August release once seemed far off, but it’s creeping up on me now. I’m working on the next book, and on a script. The Editor seems to be more intense these days, pushing harder. The only way to silence him is with prolonged writing sessions…or canned food.

While you’re pre-ordering Rise The Dark (because you are, right?) I can recommend a few other titles. I loved Joe Hill’s latest novel, The Fireman, which releases May 17, and Megan Abbott’s You Will Know Me. Stewart O’Nan’s City of Secrets is fantastic. Saddened by the news of Jim Harrison’s passing, I read his memoir, Off to the Side, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Michael Harvey’s Brighton is an excellent Boston crime drama. I’m about to dip into John Hart’s new one, Redemption Road. But for now, back to work. Storms are coming in tonight, they say. I wonder if the lights will stay on…

Best wishes,


A letter from Michael

It’s been awhile since I offered any updates from the writing desk, but I assure you that’s not because I’ve been asleep at it. Not all the time, at least. And the latest sleep research on naps and creativity suggests actually that…I digress. Here’s what’s been going on:

Rise the Dark
Rise the Dark

The new novel, Rise the Dark, is through the copyedit stage and headed toward galley copies. We have a beautiful new cover to share. What do you think? It has that “lighthearted-cheerful feeling” that I always strive for in my writing, doesn’t it? Galleys will arrive within the next week or so, and we will be hosting some contests on Facebook, so stay tuned to that page if you want to win an advance copy, four months ahead of the rest of the world.

I’m currently at work on a script rewrite of Those Who Wish Me Dead for 20th Century Fox. Very excited about this, and really enjoying it. The Blackwell brothers, in particular, have been fun to revisit. I’ve really missed their unique patter, the rhythm of their terrifying ways. I don’t know what that says about me. Let’s not pause to consider it too deeply. Moving on…

unnamedI’ve been on the road a bit lately, which has been fun, but does not please The Editor. The Editor is unwavering in his time at the desk, whether I’m around or not, and he is not shy about expressing his displeasure when I return from a brief absence. I’d share an audio clip of his thoughts, but it’s not safe for the workplace, or anyplace where children might overhear.

It’s still early, but already 2016 has been a good year for reading, and there are plenty of titles on the horizon that I’m excited for, as well. Some favorites from early in the year include Orphan X by Gregg Hurwitz, The Ex by Alafair Burke (lots of X-action this year, no?) and Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World, by Adam Grant. Pending release that you should pre-order now: The Fireman, by Joe Hill. It’s due in May, I believe, and was a favorite galley read of 2015.

Meanwhile, you can get a taste of Rise the Dark here, with the first of several excerpts to come. Hope you enjoy.

Until next time – keep reading, my friends!


Kind Words About RISE THE DARK

New York Times-bestselling authors Lee Child, Joseph Finder, and Stewart O’Nan are already fans of the book. See their comments here!

“A superb thriller literally humming and buzzing with power and tension, given depth and resonance by Koryta’s fascination with pitting lone human emotion against a vast and forbidding landscape.”

—Lee Child, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Make Me

“Rise the Dark is—excuse the pun—electrifying. Koryta delivers nonstop action in an all-too-plausible scenario, with that hint of the uncanny that’s become his trademark. The ending will have readers pounding his door for more.”

—Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of Guilty Minds and Suspicion

“Who needs jihadis when we’ve got our own homegrown terrorists? With a wild premise and fascinating background, Rise the Dark is a fast, gripping, satisfying thriller. For those who don’t know yet, Michael Koryta is building a hell of a shelf.”

—Stewart O’Nan, New York Times bestselling author of The Speed Queen and City of Secrets