Media Appearances

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David J. Morris



Praise for The Evil Hours

Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist

A New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice

A beautiful book, the non-fiction brother of Phil Klay's Redeployment. —Tom Ricks, The New Yorker

Stunning. The Evil Hours is a provocative, exhaustively researched and deeply moving analysis of traumatic memory and how we make sense of it…an essential book not just for those who have experienced trauma, but for anyone who wants to understand post-9/11 America.  —Jen Percy, The New York Times Book Review

The Evil Hours, by David Morris — at once a patient and fine writer — conveys the mysteries of trauma in a way that is unsurpassed in the literature ... this is the most important book on the subject to come out in this century.” —The Times Literary Supplement (U.K.)

I’ve read two books recently that reminded me why I wanted to be a writer in the first place. The first is called The Evil Hours by David J. Morris. The second is My Bright Abyss by Christian Wiman. Morris’s book is so good because it relies on literature, history and psychology to communicate the reality of PTSD, both to those who live with it and those who never have.  —David Brooks, The New York Times

This is the book we’ve always needed. It is certainly the most relevant work for today’s combat veterans, families and clinicians struggling with the condition. The Evil Hours could be the best book on combat PTSD ever. —Foreign Policy

This is far more than a biography of a psychological condition, or a memoir of one individual, it is also a cogent analysis of an ever increasing phenomenon that has changed the landscape of our culture. If one has any hope of coming to grips with what shapes America every day, The Evil Hours is a must read.” —Alice Sebold, author of The Lovely Bones

A lucid etiology … Well-integrated autobiographical elements make this remarkable work highly instructive and readable. —Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
An exploration of the enduring human cost of war...An eye-opening investigation of war's casualties. —Kirkus 

Morris brings not just experience but insight to a topic of grave relevance...The takeaway is a durable resource for both those with PTSD and their loved ones. —Donna Chavez, Booklist

Morris is an excellent writer who has written a very good book. He read voraciously in the clinical and scientific literature. His autodidactic enterprise [spans] war memoirs, poetry, history and anthropology, from Homer to the poets of the Great War. He deftly and accessibly synthesizes all this material. One of the notable strengths of this book is his ability to calmly summarize both sides of controversial debates.  —The Wall Street Journal

A masterful synthesis. The Evil Hours interweaves memoir with a cultural history of war’s psychic aftermath…Morris gives a sweeping view of the condition, illuminated by meditations on sacrifice and danger and, in his words, “the enigma of survival.”  —Sally Satel, Pacific Standard

Compulsively readable. —Jillian Lauren, The Los Angeles Times

A brave and honest memoir of living ‘in terror’s shadow,’ as well as a definitive account of the history, culture and science of the great affliction of our era… The Evil Hours is a gift of insight for survivors of combat stress and traumatic events of all kinds, as well as a call to action for the vast majority of Americans untouched by the brutality of more than 13 years at war. —San Diego Union-Tribune

Even today, the ‘PTSD’ label is often misunderstood and misapplied, with the average reader seeing it as something that only affects veterans and rape victims (which is decidedly not the case). What a relief, then, to have Morris’ stunning writing and thorough research to make sense of it. As a former Marine, Morris writes vividly about life during and after war; and he also turns his eye towards the trauma that can arise from other categories including sexual assault and near-death experiences. —Flavorwire  

The Evil Hours: A Biography of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is an engaging exploration of, and a timely resource on, the affliction first known in modern times as shell shock. David J. Morris, a former Marine who covered the Iraq war until he was involved in an explosion, uses his own experiences, literary accounts of war, and interviews with veterans, rape survivors and psychiatrists to weave a fascinating and well-researched narrative about psychological trauma and the American treatment of it. —Chicago Tribune

Morris has found himself in a position to help us think about PTSD with much more complexity than we’re accustomed to, and in so doing The Evil Hours takes an important and timely place in our culture. —Minneapolis Star Tribune
David Morris, a war journalist and former Marine officer, delivers a compassionate, approachable examination of post-traumatic stress in The Evil Hours…It is a book that already has cut a wide swath in the world of military veterans and others. —The Oregonian

‘Trauma destroys the normal narrative of life,’ Morris explains in this impassioned, well-researched, and beautifully written biography of an illness that we’ve only recently realized is an illness. Though he ‘hates the idea of turning writing into therapy,’ reading his book has helped this fellow sufferer. The Evil Hours is a much needed narrative.

—Ismet Prcic, author of Shards
Masterful and moving, David Morris’s investigation of this troubling psychiatric disorder asks all the important questions. This book honors suffering while also making room for hope.  —Emily Bazelon, author of Sticks and Stones
This book has the hypnotic appeal of authenticity. David J. Morris is a writer, warrior, and sufferer, his words carry an inescapable truth. His story glides through the drifting incredulity of trauma, terrible memories, and the struggling science of comprehension. There is something addictive in his way of drawing you in. The Evil Hours is fascinating uncovering of the mind, unnervingly profound. —Joe Simpson, author of Touching the Void

This book’s bite lies precisely in its ability to place private troubles in a larger social, cultural, and historical context.  Morris has done his homework well.  — The Los Angeles Review of Books

The Evil Hours is a pivotal addition to the growing war library of recent years, fiction and nonfiction, and it provides the necessary context to understand what is often unsaid or under-described.  — The Daily Beast