The Eighth Day/Theophilus North/Autobiographical Writings
By J. D. McClatchy (Editor)
Library of America, Hardcover, 9781598531466, 864pp.
Publication Date: February 2, 2012
"The best thing he ever wrote," observed Edmund Wilson of Thornton Wilder's National Book Award winner "The Eighth Day" (1967), an enthralling novel that shows Wilder revisiting the small-town America of "Our Town" to fashion a philosophical whodunit. A wrongful conviction for murder and a daring rescue lead to a meditation on justice, destiny, and "the impassioned will," for which "nothing is impossible." Wilder's last novel, the semi-autobiographical "Theophilus North" (1973), is an affectionate portrait of Newport, Rhode Island, in the 1920s and a playful, valedictory glance at Wilder's young manhood. Completing this volume are three never-before- published reminiscences taken from an unfinished autobiography in which Wilder engagingly recalls his childhood stay at a boarding school in China, his time as an undergraduate at Yale, and the uneasy experience of visiting Salzburg not long before Austria was annexed by the Nazis.
About the Author
J. D. McCLATCHY is the author of six collections of poems, three books of prose, and thirteen original libretti performed around the world. He has edited many works, including The Library of America's three-volume Thornton Wilder edition. He is the editor of the Yale Review, and lives in Stonington, Connecticut.