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This title in other editions

Farther & Wilder: The Lost Weekends and Literary Dreams of Charles Jackson

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Farther & Wilder: The Lost Weekends and Literary Dreams of Charles Jackson Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From the prizewinning biographer of Richard Yates and John Cheever, here is the fascinating biography of Charles Jackson, the author of The Lost Weekend—a writer whose life and work encapsulated what it meant to be an addict and a closeted gay man in mid-century America, and what one had to do with the other.

Charles Jackson’s novel The Lost Weekend—the story of five disastrous days in the life of alcoholic Don Birnam—was published in 1944 to triumphant success. Within five years it had sold nearly half a million copies in various editions, and was added to the prestigious Modern Library. The actor Ray Milland, who would win an Oscar for his portrayal of Birnam, was coached in the ways of drunkenness by the novel’s author—a balding, impeccably groomed middle-aged man who had been sober since 1936 and had no intention of going down in history as the author of a thinly veiled autobiography about a crypto-homosexual drunk. But The Lost Weekend was all but entirely based on Jackson’s own experiences, and Jackson’s valiant struggles fill these pages. He and his handsome gay brother, Fred (“Boom”), grew up in the scandal-plagued village of Newark, New York, and later lived in Europe as TB patients, consorting with aristocratic café society. Jackson went on to work in radio and Hollywood, was published widely, lived in the Hotel Chelsea in New York City, and knew everyone from Judy Garland and Billy Wilder to Thomas Mann and Mary McCarthy. A doting family man with two daughters, Jackson was often industrious and sober; he even became a celebrated spokesman for Alcoholics Anonymous. Yet he ultimately found it nearly impossible to write without the stimulus of pills or alcohol and felt his devotion to his work was worth the price. Rich with incident and character, Farther & Wilder is the moving story of an artist whose commitment to bringing forbidden subjects into the popular discourse was far ahead of his time.

From the Hardcover edition.

Synopsis:

Charles Jackson’s novel The Lost Weekend—the story of five disastrous days in the life of an alcoholic—was published in 1944 to triumphant success. Although he tried to escape its legacy, Jackson is often remembered only as the author of this thinly veiled autobiography. In Farther & Wilder, the award-winning biographer of Richard Yates and John Cheever goes deeper, exploring Jackson’s life—from growing up in the scandal-plagued village of Newark, New York, to a career in Hollywood and friendships with everyone from Judy Garland and Billy Wilder to Thomas Mann and Mary McCarthy. This is the fascinating biography of a writer whose life and work encapsulated what it meant to be an addict and a closeted homosexual in mid-century America, and who was far ahead of his time in bringing these forbidden subjects into the popular discourse.

About the Author

Blake Bailey is the author of A Tragic Honesty: The Life and Work of Richard Yates, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Cheever: A Life, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Francis Parkman Prize, and a finalist for the Pulitzer and James Tait Black Memorial Prizes. He edited a two-volume edition of Cheever’s work for the Library of America, and in 2010 received an Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Virginia with his wife and daughter.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307475527
Author:
Bailey, Blake
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Biography-Literary
Subject:
Biography
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage
Publication Date:
20131231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16 PP. BandW
Pages:
528
Dimensions:
8 x 5.2 x 1.05 in 1.1 lb

Related Subjects

Biography » Gay and Lesbian
Biography » Literary
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Gay and Lesbian » History and Social Science » History and Biographies
Health and Self-Help » Recovery and Addiction » General

Farther & Wilder: The Lost Weekends and Literary Dreams of Charles Jackson New Trade Paper
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Product details 528 pages Vintage Books - English 9780307475527 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Charles Jackson’s novel The Lost Weekend—the story of five disastrous days in the life of an alcoholic—was published in 1944 to triumphant success. Although he tried to escape its legacy, Jackson is often remembered only as the author of this thinly veiled autobiography. In Farther & Wilder, the award-winning biographer of Richard Yates and John Cheever goes deeper, exploring Jackson’s life—from growing up in the scandal-plagued village of Newark, New York, to a career in Hollywood and friendships with everyone from Judy Garland and Billy Wilder to Thomas Mann and Mary McCarthy. This is the fascinating biography of a writer whose life and work encapsulated what it meant to be an addict and a closeted homosexual in mid-century America, and who was far ahead of his time in bringing these forbidden subjects into the popular discourse.
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