Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Bellow: A Biography” as Want to Read:
Bellow: A Biography
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Bellow: A Biography

3.88  ·  Rating Details ·  77 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
With this masterly and original work, Bellow: A Biography, National Book Award nominee James Atlas gives the first definitive account of the Nobel Prize–winning author’s turbulent personal and professional life, as it unfolded against the background of twentieth-century events—the Depression, World War II, the upheavals of the sixties—and amid all the complexities of the J ...more
ebook, 32 pages
Published August 8th 2012 by Modern Library (first published 2000)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Bellow, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Bellow

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Paul Bryant
Is it really cool for a grown man to be poking and prodding around in another man’s sex life, I ask you? And another man to be reading about it? Huh? Is biography just gossip with footnotes? This has been the year of literary biographies for me, and I do feel a bit of a sleazehound reading about Mailer stabbing his wife & getting off the charge, and Barthelme’s 2nd wife defenestrating herself, and so on. Doesn’t stop me reading though. Well, I have a shelf of books called "Verysleazyfun" so, ...more
Jul 31, 2011 Jesse rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading James Atlas’s biography “Bellow”, about the life of the quintessentially assimilated American writer, forced me to confront a darker side of literary creation. Much as the moon shines her bright face down upon us bringing much needed luminescence to the dark night, writers give us novels, stories, prose and poems that act as a bright human connection in the dark worlds we inhabit within our skulls. But the moon has a side she hides from us – a flash-frozen surface lacking light and heat, ...more
Mar 05, 2016 Tom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“If I am out of my mind, it’s all right with me, thought Moses Herzog.” Thus muses the hero of Saul Bellow’s sixth novel in that book’s memorable opening line. It would not surprise me in the least to learn that James Atlas ever wondered if he was out of his mind, and whether that was all right with him, in the years that he labored to produce this splendid biography of arguably the most accomplished and the most acclaimed author in American literary history.

For, as it turns out, Bellow, a thre
Jesse K
Jun 04, 2013 Jesse K rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2013
This is definitely not going to end up being the definitive Ellmannesque biography of Bellow, but it was passable, in some regards. It gave the reader a skeletal outline of Bellow's life and works, and served well as a key to who was based on who in his novels, for the sort of people who like that thing. However, I have four complaints, two of which were likely out of the authors control, one of which could barely be helped, and the last of which was a rather unfortunate tactical error: (1) Ther ...more
Jun 16, 2009 Yeti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A brilliant biography that provides valuable insight into the complex writer. A great book that would prove an invaluable resource to anyone who is hesitant to try reading Bellow's own work.
Jun 16, 2014 Corey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not as magisterial as Ellmann's 'James Joyce' or Ian Hamilton's 'Robert Lowell' but still a grand life befitting its subject. Lucid, intelligent and enlightening.
May 04, 2007 Mauricio rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Como dice Lee Siegel:
"The Bellow we meet in the pages of Atlas's book must have been given the Nobel Prize by by a Jewish charitable organization."
Shawn rated it liked it
Sep 26, 2014
James Chafin
James Chafin rated it liked it
Jan 01, 2009
Will Shadbolt
Will Shadbolt rated it it was amazing
Feb 09, 2013
Mark Essig
Mark Essig rated it liked it
May 04, 2015
Christina rated it really liked it
Nov 25, 2012
Larry Watson
Larry Watson rated it really liked it
Mar 02, 2014
David rated it really liked it
Jul 06, 2009
John Darby
John Darby rated it really liked it
May 03, 2011
Nan Rabinowitz
Nan Rabinowitz rated it it was amazing
Apr 03, 2013
Alex Pieske
Alex Pieske rated it it was amazing
Aug 01, 2013
Nicole Lee
Nicole Lee rated it really liked it
Mar 18, 2012
Lee Streater
Lee Streater rated it it was amazing
Jan 25, 2015
Patricia Declue
Patricia Declue rated it liked it
Nov 19, 2014
Jason Hillenburg
Jason Hillenburg rated it really liked it
Jun 21, 2011
E. Thomas
E. Thomas rated it liked it
Sep 04, 2009
Richard L Boswell
Richard L Boswell rated it it was amazing
Mar 17, 2014
Dave Trembley
Dave Trembley rated it really liked it
Aug 23, 2011
Rodney Welch
Rodney Welch rated it liked it
Sep 12, 2009
Charles rated it it was amazing
Nov 10, 2009
Allison Taylor
Allison Taylor rated it liked it
May 29, 2011
Karen rated it it was ok
Jul 20, 2015
Craig rated it really liked it
Aug 18, 2008
Hillary Brown
Hillary Brown rated it it was amazing
Mar 30, 2013
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Share This Book