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This fall’s literary nonfiction disproves, or at least com-
plicates, the notion that the writer’s life is a lonely one.
Collections of correspondence capture authors in conversa-
tion with family members, publishers, and each other, while
literary histories reveal the relationships that nurtured clas-
sic books on the way to publication.
Albert Murray: Collected Essays & Memoirs
Albert Murray, edited by Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Paul Devlin. Library of America, Oct. 18
Marking the centenary of the groundbreaking essayist and jazz critic’s birth, this is the most
complete collection of Murray’s nonfiction yet published.
Dear Mr. Beckett—Letters from the Publisher: The Samuel Beckett File
Barney Rosset, edited by Lois Oppenheim. Opus, Oct. 13
Through letters, interviews, contracts, photos, and memorabilia—most never before made
public—readers witness the relationship between Samuel Beckett and Barney Rosset.
The Feud: Vladimir Nabokov, Edmund Wilson, and the End of a Beautiful Friendship
Alex Beam. Pantheon, Dec. 6
Beam traces a famous literary friendship from its beginning, soon after Nabokov ‘s arrival in
America, to its stormy end, after Nabokov’s fame had eclipsed Wilson’s.
Home and Away
Karl Ove Knausgaard and Fredrik Ekelund. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Jan. 10
Two world-class writers reveal themselves as ultimate soccer fans in this collection of
Lara: The Untold Love Story and the Inspiration for ‘Doctor Zhivago’
Anna Pasternak. Ecco, Jan. 24
The great-niece of Boris Pasternak reveals the real-life love story upon which he drew while
writing Doctor Zhivago.
Looking for ‘ The Stranger’: Albert Camus and the Life of a Literary Classic
Alice Kaplan. Univ. of Chicago, Sept. 22
Kaplan relates how a young, first-time writer produced one of the greatest works of 20th-century
Love from Boy: Roald Dahl’s Letters to His Mother
Edited by Donald Sturrock. Penguin/Blue Rider, Sept. 6
This collection of Roald Dahl’s letters to his mother, Sofie Magdalene, covers much of the
legendary author’s early life and career.
Soul at the White Heat: Inspiration, Obsession, and the Writing Life
Joyce Carol Oates. Ecco, Sept. 20
Oates undertakes an imaginative exploration of the writing life, and all its attendant anxieties,
joys, and futilities, in this collection of essays and criticism.
Thrill Me: Essays on Fiction
Benjamin Percy. Graywolf, Oct. 18
In his first book of nonfiction, Percy challenges the perception that literary and genre fiction are
Words Are My Matter:
Writings About Life and Books, 2000–2015, with a Journal of a Writer’s Week
Ursula K. Le Guin. Small Beer, Oct. 11
One of our best and most thoughtful writers presents a wide-ranging collection of essays,
reviews, and talks.
ESSAYS & LITERARY CRITICISM