James Purdy





James Purdy


Born
in Hicksville, Ohio, The United States
July 17, 1914

Died
March 13, 2009

Genre

Influences
Nathaniel Hawthorne, Herman Melville


James Otis Purdy's "dark, often savagely comic fiction evoked a psychic American landscape of deluded innocence, sexual obsession, violence and isolation." (NY Times obituary) He was an author of novels, short stories, poetry and plays. His works were controversial and often panned by critics but received praise from authors such as Edward Albee, Lillian Hellman, Dorothy Parker and Gore Vidal.

Purdy grew up in Ohio before moving to Chicago. After serving in the Army, he attended the University of Puebla in Puebla, Mexico, the University of Chicago and the University of Madrid. From 1949 to 1953 he taught at Lawrence College in Appleton, Wis. In 1960 he moved to New York City, where his literary career took off after meeting photographer Car
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Average rating: 3.92 · 1,691 ratings · 208 reviews · 53 distinct works · Similar authors
In a Shallow Grave

4.05 avg rating — 199 ratings — published 1975 — 11 editions
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Eustace Chisholm and the Wo...

4.02 avg rating — 226 ratings — published 1967 — 13 editions
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Malcolm: A Comic Novel

3.79 avg rating — 233 ratings — published 1959 — 16 editions
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Narrow Rooms

3.88 avg rating — 146 ratings — published 1978 — 6 editions
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The Complete Short Stories ...

by
4.12 avg rating — 99 ratings — published 2013 — 4 editions
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The Nephew

3.82 avg rating — 92 ratings — published 1960 — 7 editions
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Color of Darkness

4.19 avg rating — 70 ratings — published 1957 — 7 editions
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63, Dream Palace: Selected ...

4.27 avg rating — 51 ratings — published 1991 — 3 editions
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I am Elijah Thrush

4.05 avg rating — 64 ratings — published 1972 — 5 editions
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Cabot Wright Begins: A Novel

3.74 avg rating — 93 ratings — published 1964 — 12 editions
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More books by James Purdy…
“In a competitive society, the thing people fear the most is love.”
James Purdy

“He stood there, his eyes like they had been before. Their beauty stabbed at her heart like a great knife; the hair looked so like she had just pressed the wet comb to it and perhaps put a little pomade on the sides; and the small face was clean and sad. Yet her arms somehow did not ache to hold him like her heart told her they should. Something too far away and too strong was between her and him; she only saw him as she had always seen resurrection pictures, hidden from us as in a wonderful mist that will not let us see our love complete.”
James Purdy, 63, Dream Palace: Selected Stories, 1956-1987

“The worse the author, the more he is known.”
James Purdy

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