Cover: Stephen Crane: A Life of Fire, from Harvard University PressCover: Stephen Crane in HARDCOVER

Stephen Crane

A Life of Fire

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Product Details


$39.95 • £31.95 • €36.00

ISBN 9780674049536

Publication Date: 06/05/2014


520 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

20 halftones, insert

Belknap Press


[Sorrentino’s] book offers the most comprehensive picture to date, and it enables us to piece together a new Stephen Crane: a figure as driven to prove his manhood as Jack London; as plaintive about his broken faith as Herman Melville; and as ironic about his personal self, and as recklessly disinclined to take conventional sexual morals seriously, as Oscar Wilde.—Caleb Crain, The New Yorker

[A] sturdy new life of Crane… Sorrentino is perceptive.—Jay Parini, Literary Review

Evocative… Sorrentino’s biography gives us Crane in fact and tone… Sorrentino tracks Stephen Crane’s life with lively precision… Stephen Crane: A Life of Fire skillfully amplifies our knowledge of a singular American artist and his brief, uncompromising life.—Jayne Anne Phillips, New York Times Book Review

[Sorrentino’s] Life of Fire is significant in advancing our understanding of Crane, an enigmatic literary prodigy… [An] encyclopedic biography of Crane.—Anthony Splendora, The New Jersey Herald

Sorrentino transports readers to the intensely personal battlefields that test Crane’s artistic sincerity while exposing his desperation and loneliness… A revealing portrait, sweeping away the illusions surrounding an enigmatic genius.—Bryce Christensen, Booklist (starred review)

What Sorrentino has meticulously pieced together is a remarkable portrait of a writer whose concern for social justice often collided with his inability to realistically discern how physically punishing his adventures would be.—Mark Athitakis, Kirkus Reviews

Sorrentino’s authoritative and sympathetic portrait revives a ‘bohemian rebel’ and prolific, groundbreaking writer.Kirkus Reviews

As interesting as the man was, writing about Crane’s life is a challenge. He was famously secretive about himself, leaving few letters behind and no journal… With two books on Crane already under his belt, no author is better placed to navigate this maze than Sorrentino… On balance it’s a valuable corrective to previous accounts.—David Keymer, Library Journal

Stephen Crane seemed elusive to his contemporaries, and he proved equally elusive to generations of biographers. At last, Paul Sorrentino has produced a scrupulously reliable biography that is also wonderfully concise and colorful. It will stand for the foreseeable future as the definitive account of Crane’s life.—Michael Robertson, author of Stephen Crane, Journalism, and the Making of Modern American Literature

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