- "I'm happy to report that overall I’m pleased. The level of violence might not be for everyone, but it has a serious intent. This is the first time that the tone of my novel First Blood has been used in any of the movies. It's spot-on in terms of how I imagined the character — angry, burned-out, and filled with self-disgust because Rambo hates what he is and yet knows it's the only thing he does well. ... I think some elements could have been done better, [but] I think this film deserves a solid three stars."
- ―David Morrell on Rambo IV.
Morrell did not write a novelization for the latest, fourth film in the series because he said that he didn't need to. Morrell said that the John Rambo of the fourth film is exactly the way he was originally written: cold and angry at himself. Morrell commended Stallone for understanding who the character truly is supposed to be and gave the film a positive review.
At the age of 17, he decided that he wanted to become a writer, and moved to the United States to attend college. Morrell recieved his MA and PhD and became a literature professor at the University of Iowa in 1970, where he met a student that was a Vietnam veteran. Because of this, he was inspired him to write First Blood. After First Blood, he began writing other novels, including The Brotherhood of the Rose, which would later be adapted to an ABC miniseries starring Robert Mitchum. In 1986, he turned to writing full time, and his son Matthew died from a rare form of bone cancer the following year. This tragedy affected his work and he wrote the memoir Fireflies about his son's life. Morrell now lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and is co-president of the International Thriller Writers organization. Morrell was presented with the 2009 ThrillerMaster Award from the ITW.
Morrell is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School for wilderness survival as well as the G. Gordon Litty Academy of Corporate Security. He is also an honorary lifetime member of the Special Operations Association and the Association of Former Intelligence Officers.
According to his website, he has been trained in firearms, hostage negotiation, assuming identities, executive protection, and anti-terrorist driving, among numerous other action skills that he describes in his novels. He recently received his FAA licence to pilot his own small plane.
Morrell has revealed that Sylvester Stallone personally called his son, Matt when he was dying of bone cancer and talked to him for a half hour. At the time, Matt's friends were over and he got to talk to Rambo in front of his friends.
- 1972 First Blood
- 1975 Testament
- 1977 Last Reveille
- 1979 The Totem
- 1982 Blood Oath
- 1983 The Hundred Year Christmas - illustrated by R. J. Krupowicz
- 1984 Brotherhood of the Rose
- 1985 Fraternity of the Stone
- 1985 Rambo: First Blood Part II - (novelization of the film)
- 1987 The League of Night and Fog
- 1988 Rambo III - (novelization of the film)
- 1990 Fifth Profession
- 1991 The Covenant of the Flame
- 1993 Assumed identity
- 1994 Desperate Measures
- 1994 The Totem - unabridged
- 1996 Extreme Denial
- 1998 Double Image
- 1999 Black Evening (short stories)
- 2000 Burnt Sienna
- 2002 Long Lost
- 2003 The Protector
- 2004 Nightscape (short stories)
- 2005 Creepers
- 2007 Scavenger
- 2008 The Spy Who Came for Christmas
- 2009 The Shimmer
- 2010 The Naked Edge (Kindle E-Book)
- 1976 John Barth: An Introduction
- 1988 Fireflies
- 2002 Lessons from a Lifetime of Writing: A Novelist Looks at His Craft
- 2007 - 2008 Captain America: The Chosen