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    Monday, September 25, 2023

    Author Wally Lamb named Norwich Native Son Award winner

    Wally Lamb (Submitted)

    Norwich ― Award-winning and best-selling author Wally Lamb has used places, memories and stories from his hometown in novels that have won international acclaim and have been adapted for the screen.

    His next book about the fictional town of “Three Rivers,” which in several of his novels is loosely based on Norwich, could include a character such as himself who returns to his hometown to receive a prestigious local award.

    The Norwich Rotary Clubs and the Woman’s City Club selected Lamb as the 2023 recipient of the annual Native Son/Daughter Award. The award honors a person born and raised in the Norwich area and excelled in a career outside the region.

    Lamb, 72, a 1968 graduate of Norwich Free Academy, has authored six best-selling novels. His first and second novels, “She’s Come Undone” and “I Know This Much Is True,” were Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club selections and New York Times No. 1 best sellers. “I Know This Much Is True” was adapted as an HBO mini-series. His fourth book, “Wishin’ and Hopin’” was turned into a Lifetime TV Christmas movie filmed in the Norwich area.

    His novels have been translated into 17 languages.

    Lamb, who lives in Mansfield with his wife, Christine Grabarek Lamb, earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Connecticut and a graduate degree at Vermont College of Fine Arts. He taught at NFA from 1972 to 1997 and was NFA’s first Teacher of the Year in 1989.

    He ran the creative writing department at UConn from 1997 to 1999. Growing up in Norwich, he attended the Broad Street and Buckingham schools and Kelly Junior High.

    Lamb is also the editor of three volumes of autobiographical essays authored by his writing workshop students at York Correctional Institute women’s prison in Niantic. In 2004, the workshop and the first volume were featured on CBS’ 60 Minutes. Lamb volunteered at York from 1999 to 2019.

    Lamb will be honored at a noon luncheon June 7 at the Holiday Inn in Norwich. Tickets are $40 per person and are available at www.norwichrotaryevents.org.

    Lamb joins two 1968 NFA classmates, Peter Slosberg and Dr. Mike Morosky as Native Son Award recipients. His cousin, Frank Pedace, also won the award in 1981, and one of his NFA students, Judge Nina Elgo, was named Native Daughter Award winner in 2015.


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