The second novel by the great American novelist, now the subject of a major new film, Genius, starring Jude Law, Colin Firth, Dominic West and Nicole Kidman.
It is 1920 and Eugene Gant leaves the American South for Harvard, New York and Europe, determined to make his way as a writer. On the boat home, he meets Esther Jack, the woman who is to dominate his life. Autobiographical, vital and passionate, Wolfe's second novel blazes with energy and life.
Wolfe's first novel, Look Homeward, Angel, is also now available in Penguin Classics. Together, the two novels tell the story of Eugene Gant, Wolfe's fictional alter-ego, as he grows up in a dysfunctional family in the American South and discovers his true vocation as a writer.
This new edition includes an introduction by Elizabeth Kostova, author of The Historian.
In 1949, when I was sixteen, I stumbled on Thomas Wolfe, who died at thirty-eight in 1938, and who made numerous adolescents aside from me devotees of literature for life
Language as rich and ambitious and intensely American as any of our novelists has ever accomplished
I'm still moved by Wolfe's ability to convey the human appetite for understanding and experience
He had that flair for the extravagant and fantastic which has been an American characteristic from Irving and Poe to Dashiell Hammett