Nelson DeMille is an American author of thriller novels. He was born in Jamaica, Queens, New York City on August 23, 1943 to Huron and Antonia (Panzera) DeMille. He moved as a child with his family to Long Island. He attended Elmont Memorial High School in Elmont, New York, where he played football and ran track.
DeMille spent three years at Hofstra University, then joined the Army and attended Officer Candidate School. He was a First Lieutenant in the United States Army (1966-69) and saw action as an infantry platoon leader with the First Cavalry Division in Vietnam. He was decorated with the Air Medal, Bronze Star, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. DeMille returned to the States and went back to Hofstra University where he received his degree in Political Science and History.
DeMille's earlier books were NYPD detective novels. His first major novel was By the Rivers of Babylon, published in 1978 and still in print, as are all his succeeding novels. He is a member of The Authors Guild, the Mystery Writers of America, and American Mensa. He holds three honorary doctorates: Doctor of Humane Letters from Hofstra University, Doctor of Literature from Long Island University, and Doctor of Humane Letters from Dowling College.
His works include Word of Honor (made into a 2003 TV movie starring Don Johnson), The Charm School, The Gold Coast, Plum Island, and The General's Daughter (made into a 1999 movie starring John Travolta).
DeMille has also written under the pen names Jack Cannon, Kurt Ladner, and Brad Matthews. Many of DeMille's books are written in the first person, and as such his books follow a linear plotline in which the reader moves along with the main character. Although the tone of his writing varies from novel to novel, one consistent tool is DeMille's liberal use of sarcasm and dry humor.
He has three children, Lauren, Alexander, and James, and resides in Garden City, New York, a village on Long Island.