The Day of the Locust


Product Details

Blackstone Publishing
Publish Date
5.4 X 0.6 X 6.7 inches | 0.22 pounds
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Nathanael West published four novels during the thirty-six years of his life. The first, The Dream Life of Balso Snell, an experimental work written in the 1920s, was well-received but sales were poor. The second, the brilliant Miss Lonelyhearts, was published in 1933, a few months before his publisher went bankrupt. The third, A Cool Million, vanished into the depths of the Depression. It was at this point that West went to Hollywood to earn his living as a scriptwriter. From his Hollywood experience came The Day of the Locust. Publishing in 1939, the novel received very little recognition. The following year, on December 22nd, the day after his neighbour F. Scott Fitzgerald died of a heart attack, Nathanael West and his wife were killed in a California highway accident. When West died, at the age of thirty-seven, his originality and brilliance were little known outside an intensely admiring circle of fellow writers: William Carlos Williams, Edmund Wilson, S. J. Perelman, and others. Not until West's four novels were reissued in the late 1950s was he acknowledged as one of the most gifted writers of his generation. His masterpieces blend manic farce and despairing compassion, and their vision of an America awash in its own mass-produced fantasies, read like a prophecy of much that was to come in American literature and life.

Grover Gardner is an award-winning narrator with over eight hundred titles to his credit. Named one of the Best Voices of the Century and a Golden Voice by AudioFile magazine, he has won three prestigious Audie Awards, was chosen Narrator of the Year for 2005 by Publishers Weekly, and has earned more than thirty Earphones Awards.


It's brilliant, savage, and arresting-a truly good novel.

-- "Dorothy Parker"

This is the Hollywood that needs telling about. It's a fine job. I got a kick out of it.

-- "Dashiell Hammett"

Los Angeles has been the subject of, and setting for, many fine novels, yet The Day of the Locust still feels like the single best-achieved piece of fiction the city has inspired.

-- "Los Angeles Times"

West's Day of the Locust, a sun-blazed Polaroid of its time, seems permanently oracular.

-- "Jonathan Lethem, award-winning author of Motherless Brooklyn"