Richard Lingeman

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Double Lives: American Authors' Friendships

"A fascinating discussion of the choreography of friendship, of the roots and routes of rivalry. [Lingeman] is a reliable and amiable companion on this journey…perceptive and revealing."
--Kirkus Reviews

"Richard Lingeman, in his definitive biographies of Theodore Dreiser and Sinclair Lewis, established himself as a top literary historian. In Double Lives, he comes through as a major literary critic, revealing surprising truths in the celebrated friendships and feuds of writers whose lives and art intersected."
--Studs Terkel

"Friendship is the sine qua non of our lives, and Richard Lingeman’s delightful Double Lives is the story of seven representative literary friendships, rivalrous and fragile, sustaining and enabling. Told with great charm, it's also a story for all of us: poignant and bracing and chock-full of fresh insights about the writers — and friends — we thought we knew."
--Brenda Wineapple, author of Hawthorne: A Life

"Richard Lingeman’s survey of seven eminent literary friendships, each deftly sketched, is remarkably absorbing, given its brevity across two centuries and the fact that its cast of characters changes every 30 pages or so."
—Roy Blount Jr, New York Times Book Review

Selected Works

"Those who think they remember Word War II will find it hard to believe they could have forgotten so much that was impressive, touching, cockeyed, stirring, or just plain funny ." New York Times Book Review. "Highly entertaining." Miami Herald "Meticulous and illuminating." Chicago Tribune
"Finely detailed, first-rate social history..." (Newsweek) ..."both a wistbul look back and a collection of provocative insights into contemporary values and problems...vivid detail set out in beautifully fluent writing." (Business Week)
A sympathetic biography of the satirical scourge of Main Street and Babbitry. "Lingeman's Sinclair Lewis is a model of its kind: vivid, but never overdrawn, written in a lean, wry prose that stays grounded in the documentary evidence"—Wall Street Journal "Readable, sensitive to nuance...A warm tribute to the quarrelsome, interesting iconoclast." — NY Review of Books "The most important reevaluation of Lewis in more than a generation...It will certainly provide a biographical touchstone for new conversations."
"it is hard to imagine that anything new or different will be said about Dreiser for a long time to come. Whatever a definitive biography may be, this is surely it."
—Charles Fecher, Chicago Tribune
Double Lives explores the passions and tensions that have enlivened the most significant, most fruitful friendships in American letters.