A Writer's Life

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Random House, Jun 15, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 448 pages
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How has Gay Talese found his subjects? How has he gotten them onto the page? What drives him to write? These are some of the questions at the heart of the narrative that combines memory, reflection, explanation and a satisfying obsession. I his trademark prose - precise, beautifully crafted, elegant - Talese traces the paths his passionate interests have made through his life and writing. He talks about first becoming absorbed in issues of race as a student in Alabama, about covering the civil rights struggle and about a recent interracial wedding in Selma. He reflects on the changing American sexual mores he has written about over the last 50 years, and gives an incisive examination of the lives of Lorena and John Bobbitt. He talks about his legendary Esquire profile of Frank Sinatra - judged by the magazine to be the finest in its long history - and about the ordinary men and women whose stories led to some of his most memorable work. And as he delves into the life of a young female Chinese soccer player, we see his consuming interest in the world in its latest manifestation. In these and other recollections and stories, he gives us a fascinating picture of both the serendipity and meticulousness involved in getting a story, and getting it right.

Candid, humorous, deeply impassioned - a dazzling book about the nature of writing in one man's life, and of writing itself.

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User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

Veteran journalist Talese (Unto the Sons, 1992, etc.) revisits his youth and education.The rather odd framing device, since the author says he was never a fan, concerns soccer. Quite by accident ... Read full review

A writer's life

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Talese (The Kingdom and the Power ) was a reporter for theNew York Times from 1956 to 1965 and has since worked as one of the country├ƒ┬»├‚┬┐├‚┬Żs preeminent journalists in so-called literary ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Gay Talese was a reporter for The New York Times from 1956 to 1965. Since then he has written for the Times, Esquire, The New Yorker, and other national publications. His books include The Kingdom and the Power, Honor Thy Father, Thy Neighbour's Wife and Unto the Sons. He lives with his wife in New York City.