Tom Clark The World of Damon Runyon

ISBN 13: 9780060107710

The World of Damon Runyon

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9780060107710: The World of Damon Runyon
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Dust jacket notes: "The World of Damon Runyon is not a conventional biography. It is an evocation of an American scene. Tom Clark has written not only a life of Damon Runyon - a completely original and engaging figure - but also a story of Runyon's times, of the world he inhabited. The author follows Runyon from his anarchic and lonely youth during the last days of the Old West to success and notoriety in a world of Broadway haunts, fight rings, press boxes, floating card games, speakeasies, ten-dollar windows at Pimlico and Saratoga, nights at the Colony and the Stork Club. In this world there are characters fixed in legend - Al Capone, Jack Dempsey, Jimmy Walker, Nick the Greek - and a street population of rogues and mugs. In his more than three decades as a columnist and sports reporter, Runyon developed a distinctive style: he had an incomparable ear and deep appreciation for the 'roar of the town.' Runyon's writing, such as Guys and Dolls, offers a unique vision of America during the era of 'Wonderful Nonsense.' Clark captures the intricacies of Runyon's complicated temperament and personality: sociable and iconoclastic, dapper and sensitive, pleasant and irascible, detached and generous. The glamorous events of Runyon's public life are contrasted to the private upheavals: the erased children and vanished wives, the struggle with final illness. Clark describes this book as 'biography by association.' It is a vivid account: the era was deeply alive and Runyon, the acute, ironic observer, is one of its most enduring symbols."

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