Letters from the Editor: The New Yorkers Harold Ross
Edgar Hoover, inviting Noel Coward and Ginger Rogers to the circus, wheedling Ernest Hemingway-- offering to sell Harpo Marx a used car and James Cagney a used tractor, and explaining to restaurateur-to-the-stars Dave Chasen, step by step, how to smoke a turkey.
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There it is. My confession. Even more than Kunkel's brilliant biography "Genius in Disguise," this book offers special insights into "New Yorker" founder and editor Harold Ross, not only a seminal figure in American letters but a sardonic wit reminiscent of H. Mencken, one of the people with whom he frequently exchanged letters. Indeed, the sweep of his correspondence, from "New Yorker" stalwarts like E. While in many of these letters, Ross comes across as that curmudgeon one might expect, there is a touch of tender concern in others that shows you that some of the gruffness was merely a pose--as is his stance as the long-suffering, embattled editor who says he would rather be doing anything else, but who clearly shows he is having the time of his life.
The book may be a bit abstruse in places for those who do not know the history of the "New Yorker" during the Ross editorship, but there seems to be enough comedy throughout to maintain even a casual reader's interest. Anyone who has enjoyed "Genius in Disguise" will surely love this book. I guess the greatest complement I can offer is now that I've read Kunkel's two Ross portrayals, I can't wait for his next book.
THE ROSS YEARS | The New Yorker
The biography tells the story of Ross and his founding and development of The New Yorker. These letters bring Ross to life and convey the personality that spotted and nurtured the talent that made the magazine great. Here's a quick letter to John Cheever in , which gives a little flavor of the man: "Dear Cheever: I've just read "The Enormous Radio," having gone away for a spell and got behind, and I send my respects and admiration.
The piece is worth coming back to work for. It will turn out to be a memorable one, or I am a fish. Very wonderful, indeed. It's the other way around with me. All I know about getting out a magazine is to print what you think is good I don't think it's possible to edit a magazine by 'doping out' your audience, and would never try to do that. Convert currency. Add to Basket.
Letters from the Editor: The New Yorker's Harold Ross (Modern Library)
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