Cast of Characters Wolcott Gibbs E B White James Thurber and the Golden Age of The New Yorker

Author: Thomas Vinciguerra
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393248747
Format: PDF, Kindle
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“Exuberant . . . elegantly conjures an evocative group dynamic.” —Sam Roberts, New York Times From its birth in 1925 to the early days of the Cold War, The New Yorker slowly but surely took hold as the country’s most prestigious, entertaining, and informative general-interest periodical. In Cast of Characters, Thomas Vinciguerra paints a portrait of the magazine’s cadre of charming, wisecracking, driven, troubled, brilliant writers and editors. He introduces us to Wolcott Gibbs, theater critic, all-around wit, and author of an infamous 1936 parody of Time magazine. We meet the demanding and eccentric founding editor Harold Ross, who would routinely tell his underlings, "I'm firing you because you are not a genius," and who once mailed a pair of his underwear to Walter Winchell, who had accused him of preferring to go bare-bottomed under his slacks. Joining the cast are the mercurial, blind James Thurber, a brilliant cartoonist and wildly inventive fabulist, and the enigmatic E. B. White—an incomparable prose stylist and Ross's favorite son—who married The New Yorker's formidable fiction editor, Katharine Angell. Then there is the dashing St. Clair McKelway, who was married five times and claimed to have no fewer than twelve personalities, but was nonetheless a superb reporter and managing editor alike. Many of these characters became legends in their own right, but Vinciguerra also shows how, as a group, The New Yorker’s inner circle brought forth a profound transformation in how life was perceived, interpreted, written about, and published in America. Cast of Characters may be the most revealing—and entertaining—book yet about the unique personalities who built what Ross called not a magazine but a "movement."

Backward Ran Sentences

Author: Thomas Vinciguerra
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 1608197301
Format: PDF, Docs
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"Maybe he doesn't like anything, but he can do everything," New Yorker editor Harold Ross once said of the magazine's brilliantly sardonic theater critic, Wolcott Gibbs. And, for over thirty years at the magazine, Gibbs did do just about everything. He turned out fiction and nonfiction, profiles and parodies, filled columns in "Talk of the Town" and "Notes and Comment," covered books, movies, nightlife and, of course, the theater. A friend of the Algonquin Round Table, Gibbs was renowned for his wit. (Perhaps his most enduring line is from a profile of Henry Luce, parodying Time magazine's house style: "Backward ran sentences until reeled the mind.") While, in his day, Gibbs was equal in stature to E.B. White and James Thurber, today, he is little read. In Backward Ran Sentences, journalist Tom Vinciguerra introduces Gibbs and gathers a generous sampling of his finest work across an impressive range of genres, bringing a brilliant, multitalented writer of incomparable wit to a new age of readers.

Reporting at Wit s End

Author: St. Clair McKelway
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing USA
ISBN: 9781608191239
Format: PDF, Mobi
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"Why does A. J. Liebling remain a vibrant role model for writers while the superb, prolific St. Clair McKelway has been sorely forgotten?" James Wolcott asked this question in a recent review of the Complete New Yorker on DVD. Anyone who has read a single paragraph of McKelway's work would struggle to provide an answer. His articles for the New Yorker were defined by their clean language and incomporable wit, by his love of New York's rough edges and his affection for the working man (whether that work was come by honestly or not). Like Joseph Mitchell and A. J. Liebling, McKelway combined the unflagging curiosity of a great reporter with the narrative flair of a master storyteller. William Shawn, the magazine's long-time editor, described him as a writer with the "lightest of light touches." His style is so striking, Shawn went on to say, that "it was too odd to be imitated." The pieces collected here are drawn from two of McKelway's books--True Tales from the Annals of Crime and Rascality (1951) and The Big Little Man from Brooklyn (1969). His subjects are the small players who in their particulars defined life in New York during the 36 years McKelway wrote: the junkmen, boxing cornermen, counterfeiters, con artists, fire marshals, priests, and beat cops and detectives. The "rascals." An amazing portrait of a long forgotten New York by the reporter who helped establish and utterly defined New Yorker "fact writing," Untitled Collection is long overdue celebration of a truly gifted writer.

Reporting Always

Author: Lillian Ross
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501116029
Format: PDF, ePub
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From the inimitable New Yorker journalist Lillian Ross—“a collection of her most luminous New Yorker pieces” (Entertainment Weekly, grade: A). A staff writer for The New Yorker since 1945, Lillian Ross is one of the few journalists who worked for both the magazine’s founding editor, Harold Ross, and its current editor, David Remnick. She “made journalistic history by pioneering the kind of novelistic nonfiction that inspired later work” (The New York Times). Reporting Always is a collection of Ross’s iconic New Yorker profiles and “Talk of the Town” pieces that spans forty years. “This glorious collection by a master of the form” (Susan Orlean) brings the reader into the hotel rooms of Ernest Hemingway, John Huston, and Charlie Chaplin; Robin Williams’s living room and movie set; Harry Winston’s office; the tennis court with John McEnroe; Ellen Barkin’s New York City home, the crosstown bus with upper east side school children; and into the lives of other famous, and not so famous, individuals. “Millennials would do well to study Ross and to study her closely,” says Lena Dunham. Whether reading for pleasure or to learn about the craft, Reporting Always is a joy for readers of all ages.

Crooked Brooklyn

Author: Michael Vecchione
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 1466871741
Format: PDF, Mobi
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From 2001 to 2013, Mike Vecchione was chief of the Rackets Division in the Brooklyn District Attorney's office, which was the largest urban prosecution agency in the country. Vecchione grappled with organized crime and dirty politicians, during which he supervised, investigated, and prosecuted major felony cases. Crooked Brooklyn is a gritty story of corruption, greed and law enforcement. Vecchione navigated a political minefield and expertly rose to the judicial challenges of directing investigations into a wide variety of crimes, from bribe-taking judges to cold-blooded killers. He was responsible for taking down: - Three state Supreme Court judges - One of the most powerful political bosses in the country - Two cops who worked as assassins for the Mafia - A State Assemblywoman - An FBI agent - A corrupt oral surgeon who was secretly selling bones from the recently deceased to medical supply companies Unbelievable and unforgettable, Crooked Brooklyn is filled with characters and stories ripped straight from the tabloids, great for fans who enjoy Law & Order, readers of true crime and those hungry for details about the system that keeps us safe.

Letters from the Editor

Author: Thomas Kunkel
Publisher: Modern Library
ISBN: 0307557383
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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These exhilarating letters—selected and introduced by Thomas Kunkel, who wrote Genius in Disguise, the distinguished Ross biography—tell the dramatic story of the birth of The New Yorker and its precarious early days and years. Ross worries about everything from keeping track of office typewriters to the magazine's role in wartime to the exact questions to be asked for a "Talk of the Town" piece on the song "Happy Birthday." We find Ross, in Kunkel's words, "scolding Henry Luce, lecturing Orson Welles, baiting J. Edgar Hoover, inviting Noel Coward and Ginger Rogers to the circus, wheedling Ernest Hemingway— offering to sell Harpo Marx a used car and James Cagney a used tractor, and explaining to restaurateur-to-the-stars Dave Chasen, step by step, how to smoke a turkey." These letters from a supreme editor tell in his own words the story of the fierce, lively man who launched the world's most prestigious magazine. From the Hardcover edition.

Giant

Author: Don Graham
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
ISBN: 1466867973
Format: PDF, Kindle
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A larger-than-life narrative of the making of the classic film, marking the rise of America as a superpower, the ascent of Hollywood celebrity, and the flowering of Texas culture as mythology. Featuring James Dean, Rock Hudson, and Elizabeth Taylor, Giant is an epic film of fame and materialism, based around the discovery of oil at Spindletop and the establishment of the King Ranch of south Texas. Isolating his star cast in the wilds of West Texas, director George Stevens brought together a volatile mix of egos, insecurities, sexual proclivities, and talent. Stevens knew he was overwhelmed with Hudson’s promiscuity, Taylor’s high diva-dom, and Dean’s egotistical eccentricity. Yet he coaxed performances out of them that made cinematic history, winning Stevens the Academy Award for Best Director and garnering nine other nominations, including a nomination for Best Actor for James Dean, who died before the film was finished. In this compelling and impeccably researched narrative history of the making of the film, Don Graham chronicles the stories of Stevens, whose trauma in World War II intensified his ambition to make films that would tell the story of America; Edna Ferber, a considerable literary celebrity, who meets her match in the imposing Robert Kleberg, proprietor of the vast King Ranch; and Glenn McCarthy, an American oil tycoon; and Errol Flynn lookalike with a taste for Hollywood. Drawing on archival sources Graham’s Giant is a comprehensive depiction of the film’s production showing readers how reality became fiction and fiction became cinema.

Genius in Disguise

Author: Thomas Kunkel
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0307829413
Format: PDF
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This hugely entertaining biography of the founding editor of The New Yorker tells the diverting story of how Ross and the brilliant group of people he gathered around him--including James Thurber, Charles Addams, Dorothy Parker, and John O'Hara--devised the formula that made the magazine such a popular and critical success. Photos & cartoons.

The Origins of Cool in Postwar America

Author: Joel Dinerstein
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022645343X
Format: PDF
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Cool. It was a new word and a new way to be, and in a single generation, it became the supreme compliment of American culture. The Origins of Cool in Postwar America uncovers the hidden history of this concept and its new set of codes that came to define a global attitude and style. As Joel Dinerstein reveals in this dynamic book, cool began as a stylish defiance of racism, a challenge to suppressed sexuality, a philosophy of individual rebellion, and a youthful search for social change. Through eye-opening portraits of iconic figures, Dinerstein illuminates the cultural connections and artistic innovations among Lester Young, Humphrey Bogart, Robert Mitchum, Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, Jack Kerouac, Albert Camus, Marlon Brando, and James Dean, among others. We eavesdrop on conversations among Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, and Miles Davis, and on a forgotten debate between Lorraine Hansberry and Norman Mailer over the "white Negro" and black cool. We come to understand how the cool worlds of Beat writers and Method actors emerged from the intersections of film noir, jazz, and existentialism. Out of this mix, Dinerstein sketches nuanced definitions of cool that unite concepts from African-American and Euro-American culture: the stylish stoicism of the ethical rebel loner; the relaxed intensity of the improvising jazz musician; the effortless, physical grace of the Method actor. To be cool is not to be hip and to be hot is definitely not to be cool. This is the first work to trace the history of cool during the Cold War by exploring the intersections of film noir, jazz, existential literature, Method acting, blues, and rock and roll. Dinerstein reveals that they came together to create something completely new—and that something is cool.

Hank and Jim

Author: Scott Eyman
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1501102192
Format: PDF
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New York Times bestselling author Scott Eyman tells the story of the remarkable friendship of two Hollywood legends who, though different in many ways, maintained a close friendship that endured all of life’s twists and turns. Henry Fonda and James Stewart were two of the biggest stars in Hollywood for forty years. They became friends and then roommates as stage actors in New York, and when they began making films in Hollywood, they roomed together again. Between them they made such memorable films as The Grapes of Wrath, Mister Roberts, Twelve Angry Men, and On Golden Pond; and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Destry Rides Again, The Philadelphia Story, It’s a Wonderful Life, Vertigo, and Rear Window. They got along famously, with a shared interest in elaborate practical jokes and model airplanes, among other things. Fonda was a liberal Democrat, Stewart a conservative Republican, but after one memorable blow-up over politics, they agreed never to discuss that subject again. Fonda was a ladies’ man who was married five times; Stewart remained married to the same woman for forty-five years. Both men volunteered during World War II and were decorated for their service. When Stewart returned home, still unmarried, he once again moved in with Fonda, his wife, and his two children, Jane and Peter, who knew him as Uncle Jimmy. For Hank and Jim, biographer and film historian Scott Eyman spoke with Fonda’s widow and children as well as three of Stewart’s children, plus actors and directors who had worked with the men—in addition to doing extensive archival research to get the full details of their time together. This is not another Hollywood story, but a fascinating portrait of an extraordinary friendship that lasted through war, marriages, children, careers, and everything else.