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Patton Oswalt comes to Austin to talk about late wife's true crime book

Arianna Auber
aauber@statesman.com
Comedian Patton Oswalt comes to Austin on March 27 to talk about the paperback release of his late wife's true crime book, "I'll Be Gone in the Dark." [Contributed by Jennifer Henry]

Writer Michelle McNamara died before her true crime novel about the Golden State Killer was published in February last year — and before the serial killer was caught two months later.

But her husband, comedian Patton Oswalt, has promoted her book, "I'll Be Gone in the Dark," since its release and will make a post-South by Southwest visit to Austin next month to promote the paperback edition. The paperback includes a new chapter detailing the arrest of Joseph James DeAngelo, who authorities arrested in April because of DNA evidence tying him to a series of unsolved rapes and murders in California in the 1970s and '80s, committed by someone dubbed the Golden State Killer.

Before her death, McNamara had worked doggedly to figure out who the true killer was. Though her book wasn't directly responsible for DeAngelo's arrest and also did not include him as a suspect, "I'll Be Gone in the Dark" renewed interest in the cold cases, according to a New York Times article.

Now, you can hear from Oswalt firsthand — in conversation with locally based true crime writer Suzy Spencer — about McNamara's search for the truth, cut short when she died in her sleep in April 2016, and how Oswalt felt when he learned of DeAngelo's arrest two years later, among other things. The BookPeople event will be held at Central Presbyterian Church on March 27.

Because of anticipated excitement for his Austin appearance, BookPeople is selling $17.99 tickets to the author talk and signing via Eventbrite. Each ticket includes a pre-signed paperback copy of "I'll Be Gone in the Dark." These will be available for pick-up at the event and not available at BookPeople beforehand. Seating is first come, first served; doors will open at 6 p.m., an hour before the talk begins.

For more information, visit bookpeople.com.