Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson has attracted one of the world's largest online followings with his fascinating, widely accessible insights into science and our universe. Now, Tyson invites us to go behind the scenes of his public fame by revealing his correspondence with people across the globe who have sought him out in search of answers. In this hand-picked collection of 101 letters, Tyson draws upon cosmic perspectives to address a vast array of questions about science, faith, philosophy, life, and of course, Pluto. His succinct, opinionated, passionate, and often funny responses reflect his popularity and standing as a leading educator.
Tyson's 2017 bestseller Astrophysics for People in a Hurry offered more than one million readers an insightful and accessible understanding of the universe. Tyson's most candid and heartfelt writing yet, Letters from an Astrophysicist introduces us to a newly personal dimension of Tyson's quest to explore our place in the cosmos.
With her outsize personality, Julia Child is known around the world by her first name alone. But despite that familiarity, how much do we really know of the inner Julia? Now more than 200 letters exchanged between Julia and Avis DeVoto, her friend and unofficial literary agent memorably introduced in the hit movie Julie & Julia, open the window on Julia's deepest thoughts and feelings. This riveting correspondence, in print for the first time, chronicles the blossoming of a unique and lifelong friendship between the two women and the turbulent process of Julia's creation of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, one of the most influential cookbooks ever written. Frank, bawdy, funny, exuberant, and occasionally agonized, these letters show Julia, first as a new bride in Paris, then becoming increasingly worldly and adventuresome as she follows her diplomat husband in his postings to Nice, Germany, and Norway. With commentary by the noted food historian Joan Reardon, and covering topics as diverse as the lack of good wine in the United States, McCarthyism, and sexual mores, these astonishing letters show America on the verge of political, social, and gastronomic transformation.
Sharp and moving reflections and ruminations on the artistry and craft of writing from one of our most iconoclastic, riveting, and celebrated masters.
Charles Bukowski's stories, poems, and novels have left an enduring mark on our culture. In this collection of correspondence--letters to publishers, editors, friends, and fellow writers--the writer shares his insights on the art of creation.
On Writing reveals an artist brutally frank about the drudgery of work and canny and uncompromising about the absurdities of life--and of art. It illuminates the hard-edged, complex humanity of a true American legend and counterculture icon--the "laureate of American lowlife" (Time)--who stoically recorded society's downtrodden and depraved. It exposes an artist grounded in the visceral, whose work reverberates with his central ideal: "Don't try."
Piercing, poignant, and often hilarious, On Writing is filled not only with memorable lines but also with Bukowski's trademark toughness, leavened with moments of grace, pathos, and intimacy.
Letters chronicle a century of life in the United States, from Mark Twain's humorous letter to the head of Western Union to Einstein's warning to Roosevelt about atomic warfare and a young Bill Gates begging hobbyists not to share software.
He was a supreme artist in the intimacies and connections that bind people together or tear them apart, says Leon Edel in his introduction to this collection of Henry James's best letters. Edel has chosen, from the four-volume epistolarium already published, those letters which especially illuminate James's writing, his life, his thoughts and fancies, his literary theories, and his most meaningful friendships. In addition, there are two dozen letters that have never before been printed. In its unity, its elegance, and its reflection of almost a century of Anglo-American life and letters, this correspondence can well be said to belong to literature as well as to biography. Besides epistles to James's friends and family--including his celebrated brother, William--there are letters to notables such as Flaubert and Daudet in France; Stevenson, Gosse, Wells, and Conrad in England; and Americans from William Dean Howells to Edith Wharton. The latter correspondence, in particular, enlarges our understanding of James's complex involvements with Wharton and her circle; among the previously unpublished letters are several to Wharton's rakish lover, Morton Fullerton. This masterly selection allows us to observe the precocious adolescent, the twenty-six-year-old setting out for Europe, the perceptive traveler in Switzerland and Italy, and the man-about-London consorting with Leslie Stephen and William Morris, meeting Darwin and Rossetti, hearing Ruskin lecture, visiting George Eliot. The letters describe periods of stress as well as happiness, failure as well as success, loneliness as well as sociability. They portray in considerable psychological depth James's handling of his problems (particularly with his family), and they allow us to see him adjust his mask for each correspondent.
This collection is a magnificent confirmation of Lowell's prediction. From several thousand letters, written over fifty years - from 1928 when she was seventeen (and already a poet) to the day of her death, in Boston in 1979 - Robert Giroux, her editor during her lifetime, has selected over 500 and has written a detailed and informative introduction. In one sense, Elizabeth Bishop's letters constitute her autobiography, including the story of her love for Lota Soares in Brazil, which ended with Lota's tragic suicide fifteen years later. They also record her intense relationships with her early mentor Marianne Moore and later with Robert Lowell. For Bishop, letter-writing was a joy and a necessity, an embodiment of the links between people, but also a facet of her art, conjuring the world in words. Some letters are carefully composed, elegant in style; some are spontaneous and witty, alive with unexpected detail; some contain poems sent as gifts; others are cries from the heart. Sometimes she ponders on her childhood, on her struggle to create, or to resist drink, but more often she responds fully and vividly to the immediate moment, the color of the sky, the books she has been reading, the friend she misses, the meal she is cooking, the toucan or cat she is observing, the room she is painting in a Harlequinade pattern of big colored diamonds. One Art takes us behind Bishop's formal sophistication and reserve, displaying to the full the gift for friendship, the striving for perfection, and the passionate, questing, rigorous spirit that made her a great poet.
In this riveting collection, available for the first time in paperback, we follow Harry S. Truman and Dean Acheson, two giants of the post-World War II period who were primarily responsible for the Marshall Plan and NATO, among other world-shaping initiatives, as they move from an official relationship to one of candor, humor, and personal expression. In these letters, spanning the years from when both were newly out of office until Acheson's death at the age of seventy-eight, we find them sharing the often surprising and always illuminating opinions, ideas, and feelings that the strictures of their offices had previously kept them from revealing. Unbuttoned, careless of language, unburdened by political ambition or vanity, Truman and Acheson reveal their characters and their loyalty to each other on every page. Truman, a Missouri farmer with the unpolished but sharp intellect of a largely self-educated man, and Acheson, well educated, urbane, and affluent, seem an unlikely pair. But both men shared a deep and abiding patriotism and a taste for politics that transcended their very different backgrounds. Affection and Trust is a remarkable book that brings to light the very human side of two of the most important statesmen of the twentieth century. Harry S. Truman was the thirty-third president of the United States. Dean Acheson was secretary of state during the Truman administration. David McCullough is a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the author of John Adams and Truman, both Pulitzer Prize winners.
Letters--mostly of the nuts-and-bolts, practical variety--between Thomas Wolfe and his literary agent, Elizabeth Nowell. Nowell served as Wolfe's editor for many of his short stories, paring them down to make them acceptable to magazines. Oddly enough, his attitude toward her was grateful rather than adversarial, and their deep mutual respect is clearly evident in these letters.
Originally published in 1983.
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College football fans need no introduction to Bud Wilkinson, but few of them know the great University of Oklahoma football coach as a devoted father. In Dear Jay, Love Bud, Jay Wilkinson, Bud's younger son, shares forty-seven letters his father wrote to him while he was in college and graduate school. Spanning the early to mid-1960s, these letters reveal Bud's deep love for his son, as well as the philosophy and values that led to his remarkable success in sports and in life.Beginning with the first letter Bud wrote when Jay left home, this collection shows a father guiding his son toward his own path while stressing the importance of service to others. The embodiment of the scholar-athlete, Bud mixes encouragement with intellectual discussions. When Jay reads American philosopher William James for a class at Duke University, his father, a serious student of literature, reads the book, too, and uses its insights to help Jay deal with the challenges of his freshman year. Bud writes about his own challenges, as well, including his debate over whether to accept the Kennedy administration's invitation to head the President's Council on Physical Fitness. Jay's comments about each of these letters provide context and further insight.By the time Jay becomes a graduate student at the Episcopal Theological School, the correspondence turns toward religion and politics, as Bud reflects on the philosophical issues of the day and on his unsuccessful run for the U.S. Senate in 1964. His belief that the greatest leaders are not always the most popular made him an unlikely politician even then, but a wonderful role model and interlocutor for his son. Bud's thoughts on ethics in business and politics are as inspiring today as when he wrote them a half-century ago.