ABOUT THIS BOOK
Frank Norris Remembered is a collection of reminiscences by Norris’s contemporaries, friends, and family that illuminate the life of one of America’s most popular novelists.
Considering his undergraduate education spent studying art at Académie Julian in Paris and creative writing at Harvard and his journalism career reporting from the far reaches of South Africa and Cuba, it is difficult to fathom how Frank Norris also found time to compose seven novels during the course of his brief life. But despite his adventures abroad, Norris turned out novels at a dizzying pace. He published Moran of the Lady Letty in 1898, McTeague early in 1899, Blix later that year, A Man’s Woman in February 1900, and The Octopus, the first in his ultimately unfinished “Epic of the Wheat” trilogy, in 1901. By informing his novels with his own experiences abroad, Norris composed works that were politically charged and culturally relevant and that made considerable contributions to the character of American literature in the twentieth century.
Frank Norris died at the age of thirty-two in 1902 from peritonitis resulting from a burst appendix, leaving behind a wife, a daughter, and an unfinished series of novels (two of which, The Pit and Vandover and the Brute, were published posthumously). The aim of Frank Norris Remembered, edited by Jesse S. Crisler and Joseph R. McElrath Jr., is to re-create the short, spectacular life of this American author through the eyes of those who knew him best. The fifty reminiscences included in this book feature the voices of Frank N. Doubleday; William Dean Howells; Hamlin Garland; Norris’s wife, Jeannette; and many others who were lucky enough to form a relationship with this vital twentieth-century American author, artist, and adventurer.