Synopses & Reviews
Art Spiegelman's sinister and witty black-and-white drawings give charged new life to Joseph Moncure March's The Wild Party
, a lost classic from 1928. The inventive and varied page designs offer perfect counterpoint to the staccato tempo of this hard-boiled jazz-age tragedy told in syncopated rhyming couplets.
Here is a poem that can make even readers with no time for poetry stop dead in their tracks. Once read, large shards of this story of one night of debauchery will become permanently lodged in the brain. When The Wild Party was first published, Louis Untermeyer declared: "It is repulsive and fascinating, vicious and vivacious, uncompromising, unashamed...and unremittingly powerful. It is an amazing tour de force."
"The Wild Party may have begun as a dark Prohibition-era morality fable, but, thanks...to Spiegelman, it lives again as a funhouse mirror of current fears." San Francisco Chronicle
"Spiegelman's drawings are like demonic woodcuts: every angle, line, and curve jumps out at you. Stylishness and brutishness are in perfect accord." The New York Times
"[T]he poem works as a bouncy artifact, and the black-and-white illustrations are appropriately, viscerally graphic, summoning up the sense of a knockabout urban spree with debonair zeal and well-appointed crudeness." Publishers Weekly
"The Wild Party?...It's the book that made me want to be a writer." William Burroughs
When first published in 1928, this story of one night of debauchery in the life of a vaudeville dancer became a "scandalous" success. The Wild Party is now given new life and expression, with March's text accompanied by more than 75 remarkable drawings by Art Spiegelman.
About the Author
Joseph Moncure March was a poet, journalist and screenwriter best known for his two verse narratives, The Wild Party
and The Set-Up
, the story of a washed-up black boxer. An editor for The New Yorker
in the 1920s, he died in 1977.
Art Spiegelman is the author of Maus, A Survivor's Tale, for which he received a special Pulitzer Prize in 1992. He was co-founder and editor of Raw, the acclaimed magazine of avant-garde comics, and is currently a staff artist for The New Yorker and comix editor at Details magazine. He lives in New York City with his wife, Françoise Mouly, and their two children, Nadja and Dashiell.