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This title in other editions

Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson

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Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A series of Vintage reprints and Hollywood films like The Getaway and The Grifters have helped develop a wider popular and critical following for crime author Jim Thompson (1906-1977) than he sustained while alive. More twisted, sadistic and nihilistic than Chandler or Caine, Thompson's trademarks were his fiendish first-person psychopaths and lowlifes and his grim tales of failed lives and thwarted crimes. Polito, director of the writing program at Manhattan's New School, here untangles the man from his two-volume autobiography (Bad Boy and Roughneck), revealing a maverick alcoholic who was dogged by spells of depression and missed opportunities throughout his hand-to-mouth career. The son of a corrupt Oklahoma sheriff who lost his money speculating in oil, Thompson had his first alcohol-induced nervous breakdown as a hotel busboy in Ft. Worth while still in high school. He oscillated between low-wage jobs, hack journalism and literary circles for the rest of his life; joined the Communist Party in 1936; briefly became director of the Oklahoma Writer's Project; and struggled to publish novels that were often either too dark or slapdash for the mainstream. He enjoyed his most prolific period under editor Arnold Halo at Lion Books in the 1950s, eventually landing in Hollywood as a part-time film and television writer. This meticulous study adroitly evokes the rise of pulp adventure and crime magazines like Saga and True Detective, where Thompson honed his style, and the seedy underworld of hoboes and grifters who formed the models for his "savage art."

Synopsis:

US

Synopsis:

Robert Polito recounts Thompson's relationship with his father, a disgraced Oklahoma sheriff, with the women he adored in life and murdered on the page, with alcohol, would-be censors, and Hollywood auteurs. Unrelenting and empathetic, casting light into the darker caverns of our collective psyche, Savage Art is an exemplary homage to an American original. A National Book Critics Circle Award winner. 57 photos.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780679733522
Author:
Polito, Robert
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Author:
Polito, Robert
Location:
New York :
Subject:
General
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
American - General
Subject:
Authors, American
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - Hard-Boiled
Subject:
Novelists, American
Subject:
Crime in literature
Subject:
Biography-Literary
Subject:
biography;noir;non-fiction
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage
Series Volume:
CS-2616-SR
Publication Date:
19961031
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
57 BandW ILLUSTRATIONS
Pages:
560
Dimensions:
8.00x5.26x1.17 in. 1.17 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Biography » Literary
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

Savage Art: A Biography of Jim Thompson Used Trade Paper
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Product details 560 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9780679733522 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , US
"Synopsis" by , Robert Polito recounts Thompson's relationship with his father, a disgraced Oklahoma sheriff, with the women he adored in life and murdered on the page, with alcohol, would-be censors, and Hollywood auteurs. Unrelenting and empathetic, casting light into the darker caverns of our collective psyche, Savage Art is an exemplary homage to an American original. A National Book Critics Circle Award winner. 57 photos.
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