Talking about this book? Be sure to tag it using #MadattheWorld #NetGalley
A biography of one of America’s most popular and misunderstood authors, John Steinbeck.
This first full-length biography of the Nobel Laureate to appear in a quarter century explores John Steinbeck’s long apprenticeship as a writer struggling through the depths of the Great Depression, and his rise to greatness with masterpieces such as The Red Pony, Of Mice and Men, and The Grapes of Wrath. His most poignant and evocative writing emerged in his sympathy for the Okies fleeing the dust storms of the Midwest, the migrant workers toiling in California’s fields, and the laborers on Cannery Row, reflecting a social engagement—paradoxical for all of his natural misanthropy—radically different from the writers of the so-called Lost Generation.
A man by turns quick-tempered, contrary, compassionate, and ultimately brilliant, Steinbeck took aim at the corrosiveness of power, the perils of income inequality, and the growing urgency of ecological collapse, all of which drive fierce public debate to this day.
About the Author: Journalist and author William Souder's previous books include biographies of Rachel Carson (a New York Times Notable Book of the Year), and John James Audubon (a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize).
“William Souder’s Mad at the World is a stupendous biography of John Steinbeck. By connecting California’s fog, farms, forests and fisheries to Steinbeck’s growth as an artist Souder has elevated the great Nobel Prize–winning novelist to relevancy in today’s depression-stuck America. The backstories on how Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath and his relationship with marine biologist Ed Ricketts are extraordinary. Throughout the narrative Souder provides first-rate literary analysis and gorgeous prose-styling. This is a book for the ages. Highly recommended!” - Douglas Brinkley, Katherine Tsanoff Brown Chair in Humanities and professor of history, Rice University, and author of Rightful Heritage
“Brilliance follows brilliance in this illuminating biography of John Steinbeck. William Souder reveals his with a vibrant narrative and prose worthy of the master himself. Every page comes alive with the force of history, the wonder of place, and the friends, strangers, and dogs that shaped the sensibilities of the man who became the conscience of modern America.” - Jack E. Davis, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Gulf: The Making of an American Sea