J. D. Salinger by Kenneth Slawenski
A Life

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Kenneth Slawenski's insightful and sympathetic biography, "J.D. Salinger," convincingly shows that Salinger felt he had sinned by polluting his early work with worldly ambition...And it is unlikely that any author will do a better job than Mr. Slawenski capturing the glory of Salinger's life...
-WSJ online

Synopsis

NATIONAL BESTSELLER

One of the most popular and mysterious figures in American literary history, the author of the classic Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger eluded fans and journalists for most of his life. Now he is the subject of this definitive biography, which is filled with new information and revelations garnered from countless interviews, letters, and public records. Kenneth Slawenski explores Salinger’s privileged youth, long obscured by misrepresentation and rumor, revealing the brilliant, sarcastic, vulnerable son of a disapproving father and doting mother. Here too are accounts of Salinger’s first broken heart—after Eugene O’Neill’s daughter, Oona, left him—and the devastating World War II service that haunted him forever. J. D. Salinger features all the dazzle of this author’s early writing successes, his dramatic encounters with luminaries from Ernest Hemingway to Elia Kazan, his office intrigues with famous New Yorker editors and writers, and the stunning triumph of The Catcher in the Rye, which would both make him world-famous and hasten his retreat into the hills of New Hampshire. J. D. Salinger is this unique author’s unforgettable story in full—one that no lover of literature can afford to miss.
 
 

About Kenneth Slawenski

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Kenneth Slawenski is the creator of DeadCaulfields.com, a website founded in 2004 and recommended by The New York Times. He has been working on this biography for eight years. Slawenski was born in New Jersey, and has lived there all his life.
 
Published January 25, 2011 by Random House. 464 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History. Non-fiction
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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by Carl Rollyson on Jan 22 2011

Kenneth Slawenski's insightful and sympathetic biography, "J.D. Salinger," convincingly shows that Salinger felt he had sinned by polluting his early work with worldly ambition...And it is unlikely that any author will do a better job than Mr. Slawenski capturing the glory of Salinger's life...

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