Today's Page: June 28th
28 Jun 2012 9:51
Luigi Pirandello, Esther Forbes, Eric Ambler, A.E. Hotchner, Howard E. Barker, and Mark Helprin are the acclaimed authors who were born or died on a day like this.
Luigi Pirandello, born on a day like this in 1867, was an Italian dramatist, novelist, and short story writer. Pirandello's works include novels, hundreds of short stories, and about 40 plays, some of which are written in Sicilian. In 1903, while facing a family disaster, Pirandello wrote the novel "The Late Mattia Pascal". It was an immediate success and paved the way to the notoriety and fame which allowed him to publish for the more important editors. "Six Characters in Search of an Author", "The Pleasure of Honesty", and "The Man, The Beast and The Virtue" are some of his other works. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1934, for his "bold and brilliant renovation of the drama and the stage". Pirandello Passed away on December 10, 1936, aged 69.
Esther Louise Forbes was an American novelist, historian and children's writer. She was born on a day like this in 1891 in Massachusetts. Her first novel "O Genteel Lady!" was published in 1926 and in 1928 "A Mirror for Witches" was published. In a break from her fiction, Esther wrote a definitive biography of Paul Revere. "Paul Revere and the World He Lived In" was published in 1942, for which she received the Pulitzer Prize in History in 1943. Also in 1943 she received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Clark University. In 1943, her best known work "Johnny Tremain" was published, for which she received the Newbery Award. Forbes died on August 12, 1967, aged 76.
Eric Clifford Ambler was born on a day like this in 1909. He was an influential British author of spy novels who introduced a new realism to the genre. Ambler also used the pseudonym Eliot Reed for books co-written with Charles Rodda. Ambler's best known works are probably "The Mask of Dimitrios"(1939) (originally published under the title "A Coffin for Dimitrios"), which was made into a film in 1944, and "The Light of Day"(1962), filmed in 1964. Amongst other classic movies based on his work are "Journey Into Fear"(1943), and an original screenplay, "The October Man"(1947). He also published his autobiography in 1985, "Here Lies Eric Ambler". Ambler passed away on October 22, 1998, at age 89.
A. E. Hotchner
Aaron Edward Hotchner is an American editor, novelist, playwright and biographer. He was born in St. Louis on a day like this in 1920. After the world war he decided to pursue a career in writing. His articles appeared in the best magazines and journals of the time, and he has also been an editor, biographer, novelist, playwright, and with Paul Newman, entrepreneur of the rarest type. Hotchner met Ernest Hemingway and the two spent the next 14 years as close friends. Hotchner is best known for "Papa Hemingway", his 1966 biography of Ernest Hemingway. "The Dangerous American" and "Treasure" are two of his other known works.
Howard E. Barker
Howard E. Barker, born on a day like this in 1946, is a British playwright. Barker's plays often explore violence, the desire for power, and human motivation. He has coined the term "Theatre of Catastrophe" to describe his work. Barker frequently turns to historical events for inspiration. His play "Scenes from an Execution", for example, centers on the aftermath of the Battle of Lepanto. The short play "Judith" revolves around the Biblical story of Judith, the legendary heroine who decapitated the invading general Holofernes. In other plays, Barker has fashioned responses to famous literary works. "Brutopia" is a challenge to Thomas More's "Utopia". In "Uncle Vanya", he poses an alternative vision to Anton Chekhov's drama of the same name. Though he is relatively unknown in his own country, Barker's works have earned him a sizable following on the European mainland where his plays get more lavish productions, and many of his plays have been translated into various languages.
Mark Helprin was born on a day like this in 1947. He is an American novelist, journalist, and conservative commentator. His first novel, published in 1977, was "Refiner's Fire". "Winter's Tale"(1983), and "A Soldier of the Great War"(1991) are two of his other novels. Helprin has published three books of short stories: "A Dove of the East & Other Stories"(1975), "Ellis Island & Other Stories"(1981), and "The Pacific and Other Stories"(2004). He has also written three children’s books: "Swan Lake", "A City in Winter", and "The Veil of Snows". His works have been translated into more than a dozen languages.