Undergraduate Academic Affairs

An evening with Luis Urrea, author of The Devil’s Highway

Luis Urrea

Luis Alberto Urrea, member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, is a prolific and acclaimed writer who uses his dual-culture life experiences to explore greater themes of love, loss and triumph. Born in Tijuana, Mexico, to a Mexican father and an American mother, Urrea has published extensively in all the major genres and is currently published by Little, Brown and Company.

The critically acclaimed author of 11 books, Urrea is an award-winning novelist, poet and essayist. The Devil’s Highway, his 2004 non-fiction account of a group of Mexican immigrants lost in the Arizona desert, won the 2004 Lannan Literary Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the Pacific Rim Kiriyama Prize. A national best-seller, The Devil’s Highway was also named a best book of the year by the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Chicago Tribune, Kansas City Star and many other publications. —UWTV

About the UW Common Book

Undergraduate Academic Affairs initiated the UW Common Book in 2006 to welcome new students to the University’s intellectual community and to be a catalyst for engaging in experiential learning. Centered in the Undergraduate Academic Affairs at the UW Seattle campus, UW Bothell and Tacoma may also choose to incorporate the book into their campus curriculum. The UW Common Book is implemented with the partnership and support of the University Libraries, University Bookstore, and UW Alumni Association.

Selection history

  • Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World by Tracy Kidder (2006)
  • Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change by Elizabeth Kolbert (2007)
  • The Devil’s Highway: A True Story by Luis Alberto Urrea (2008)
  • Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance by Barack Obama (2009)