PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - Best selling author Erik Larson was in Pass Christian Wednesday, speaking to a packed house at the Randolph Center. It's all part of the new "One Book, One Pass" program aimed at bringing the city together.
Wendy Allard with the Pass Christian Public Library started the program a year ago.
"The idea is everyone in Pass Christian will read the same book, get together and discuss it. For our inaugural book, we selected "Dead Wake," by Erik Larson," Allard explained.
She says she's excited to have an author of Larson's caliber in town from his home in New York. Larson is the author of five New York Times best-sellers. His most recent is Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania.
"Most people in town have read Dead Wake," Allard said. "We've had numerous programs, including a theater experience with a book discussion, and tonight is the culmination of the program for us."
The guest of honor said he's always wanted to be a writer, and started out working in newspapers and magazines before progressing to non-fiction. Dead Wake is about the sinking of the Lusitania, a luxury ocean liner, but with added depth and intrigue to the historical event.
"I only took this book on because there's a sense of there's another opportunity to tell a story with as much real life suspense as one possibly can," Larson said.
Allard said the parameters for book selection were it needed to appeal to both men and women, from high school age to seniors, and she hopes the program continues to unite the Pass in the coming years. She also said they've already selected the 2017 author, and will reveal who it is later this week.