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The Blackboard Jungle (Classic Ed) (Simon & Schuster Classics)
Synopses & Reviews
Evan Hunter's novels have sold over one hundred million copies. His writing includes screenplays, literary novels, and children's books, but he is perhaps best known for his hugely successful 87th Precinct series, penned under the pseudonym Ed McBain.
The book that launched Hunter into a full-time writing career and onto the bestseller lists was his first major novel, The Blackboard Jungle. Written in 1954, this controversial story cracked down on the public school system and dramatized student violence as no other novel of its time did. Hunter used his own teaching experience to create protagonist Richard Dadier, who lands his first real job as an English teacher at North Manual Trades High School in New York City. Dadier knows the students here will be tough, but nothing has prepared him for the world he enters.
Hunter's popular and groundbreaking novel attracted much attention when it was first published, and it became a top bestseller in 1955. Set against the changing social culture of the 1950s, The Blackboard Jungle is a fascinating time capsule that brilliantly illuminates an issue still in the forefront of our minds.
Repackaged as the fifth book in the Classic Editions series, "The Blackboard Jungle" is perhaps the first novel to grapple with "teen angst" before the term was even coined.
About the Author
Evan Hunter was born in Manhattan, but fled to the Bronx at the age of twelve. He went through elementary and high school in the New York City school system, and the Navy claimed him in 1944. When he returned in 1946, he attended Hunter College, and it was there that he met his wife Anita, whom he married in his senior year.
His first job after graduation obviously gave him much of the background which inspired The Blackboard Jungle. He taught in a vocational high school. Next he answered telephones for the American Automobile Association and from there he graduated to another telephone job, this time calling restaurants and asking them if they wanted any nice fresh Maine lobsters that day.
Next, he answered a blind advertisement for an editor, and went to work for a literary agent. Up to this point his creative urge had been buckshot scattered among the arts. He had tried writing and painting — he once won a scholarship to the Art Students' League and later attended Cooper Union — and he played the piano in a jazz band. At the literary agency, he learned about plotting stories, and when his agent-boss started selling them regularly to magazines, and sold a mystery novel and a juvenile science-fiction title as well, he decided that it would be more profitable to stay home and write full time. The Blackboard Jungle is the first major result of this decision.
Evan and Anita Hunter now live on Long Island. They have three children — Ted and the twins, Mark and Richard.
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