Authors Out Here.

Position:Book review

Tom Cerasulo (author); AUTHORS OUT HERE; The University of South Carolina Press () $0.00 ISBN: 9781570039034

Novels and movies are so closely knit in the present-day entertainment industry that it seems strange to think of a time when the two arts were not entwined. While few would now bat an eye at the film adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgeraldas short story aThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button,a Tom Cerasulo takes us back to a time when film adaptation of literary work was still a novel idea, in an engaging look at several writers who made Hollywood the target of their literary goals. In Authors out Here: Fitzgerald, West, Parker, and Schulberg in Hollywood, Cerasulo eschews overly scholarly prose to get at the economic realities and individual idiosyncrasies that led these authors to write for the Hollywood movie machine.

The book is centered on Fitzgerald, and examines Dorothy Parker, Nathanael West, and Budd Schulberg largely in terms of how they related to him--particularly his infamous friendship with Parker, and how he and West differed in their approach to Hollywood. The beginnings of the literary careers of each of the four subjects are examined in what might seem to be an excess of detail, but the reader will appreciate seeing how their trajectories led from the beginning points to the period covered in this book.

Cerasulo draws liberally but with an expert eye for relevant information from various biographies of the authors. He shows how Fitzgerald and West were facing one form of desperation or another before looking to Hollywood as a means of income: the former concerned with paying medical bills for his wifeas mental...

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