Tag Archives: Biography

Unauthorized Anthony Bourdain Biography Publishes His Final Texts

“I hate my fans, too. I hate being famous. I hate my job,” Bourdain wrote to his ex-wife, Ottavia Busia-Bourdain.

By Brady Langmann, Published: Sep 27, 2022

More than four years have passed since the death of Anthony Bourdain, who died by suicide in June 2018 while on location in France filming his CNN series, Parts Unknown. Since then, questions about his death have fueled explorations of the late chef’s life and work, from the documentary film, Roadrunner, to Bourdain: The Definitive Oral Biography, both released last year.

On October 11, we’ll see the release of what’s reportedly the first unauthorized biography of Bourdain: Charles Leerhsen’s Down and Out in Paradise: The Life of Anthony Bourdain, published by Simon & Schuster. On Tuesday, The New York Times published a preview of the book, which details Leerhsen’s reporting of the biography, many of the sources who spoke to the author for the book (and some who refused), and texts Bourdain sent in his final days. According to the Times, Bourdain’s family is already unhappy with the book, with his brother, Christopher, emailing the publisher in August, “calling the book hurtful and defamatory fiction, and demanding that it not be released until Mr. Leerhsen’s many errors were corrected.”

Source: https://www.esquire.com/entertainment/books/a41412445/anthony-bourdain-unauthorized-biography-texts/

On Maggie Bradbury, the woman who “changed literature forever.” ‹ Literary Hub

By Emily Temple, August 30, 2022, 9:40am

from article…

Ray Bradbury met his first girlfriend—and his future wife—in a bookstore. But they didn’t lock eyes over the same just-selected novel, or bump into each other in a narrow aisle, sending books and feelings flying.

It was a warm afternoon in April 1946, and 25-year-old Ray Bradbury—an up-and-coming pulp fiction writer—was wearing a trench coat and carrying a briefcase while he scanned the shelves at Fowler Brothers Bookstore in downtown Los Angeles.

Naturally, Marguerite McClure—Maggie—who worked at the bookstore, “was immediately suspicious.” Someone had been stealing books, but hadn’t yet been caught. So she struck up a conversation. “I expected him to slam his briefcase down on a pile of books and make off with a few,” she said. “Instead, he told me he was a writer and invited me to have a cup of coffee with him.”

Coffee became lunch became dinner became romance; Maggie was the first woman Ray had ever dated, but he managed all right, and they were married on September 27, 1947.

Source: https://lithub.com/on-maggie-bradbury-the-woman-who-changed-literature-forever/

‘I just wanted my life to end’: the mystery of Agatha Christie’s disappearance | Biography books | The Guardian

In 1926 the world’s bestselling author vanished for 11 days. Did she really go into hiding to frame her husband for murder? Historian Lucy Worsley reopens a case still shrouded in mystery

By Lucy Worsley, Sat 27 Aug 2022 04.00 EDT

Illustration: Eleanor Shakespeare

Agatha Christie was sitting quietly on a train when she overheard a stranger saying her name. In the carriage, she said, were “two women discussing me, both with copies of my paperback editions on their knees”. They had no idea of the identity of their fellow passenger, and proceeded to discuss the most famous author in the world. “I hear,” said one of the ladies, “she drinks like a fish.”

I love this story because it sums up so much about Agatha Christie’s life. They both had her paperbacks. Of course they did. Christie wrote more than 80 books, outsold only by Shakespeare and the Bible, so the cliche runs. And she wasn’t just a novelist, either: she remains history’s most performed female playwright. She was so successful people think of her as an institution, not as a breaker of new ground. But she was both.

And then, in the railway carriage, there’s the watchful presence of Christie herself, unnoticed. Yes, she was easy to overlook, as is the case with nearly any woman past middle age. But she deliberately played on the fact that she seemed so ordinary. It was a public image she carefully crafted to conceal her real self.

Source: ‘I just wanted my life to end’: the mystery of Agatha Christie’s disappearance | Biography books | The Guardian

Legendary Nevadans: Mark Twain – Nevada Magazine

Summer 2022

Mark Twain circa 1905 ©University of Nevada, Reno Special Collections

All Nevada is a stage, and cowpokes, artists, activists, and visionaries are the players in a drama centuries in the making.

Whether born or raised, these special characters aren’t just Nevadans: they’re Legendary Nevadans.

In 1861, Samuel Clemens was living his childhood dream as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi. The 25-year-old had established himself as a talented, respected navigator and earned a considerable salary of $70 a week (equivalent to about $2,000 today).  But that summer, Clemens knew his days as a pilot were over.

The Civil War had just begun, and military blockades were undoing his livelihood. With few prospects in his home state of Missouri, a new opportunity suddenly appeared from his older brother. 

Source: Legendary Nevadans: Mark Twain – Nevada Magazine

Explained: What is Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer Based on? | Movieweb

Here’s a deep dive into the complexities of the father of the atomic bomb, Nolan’s subject in his upcoming film Oppenheimer.

By Andrew Sidhom, Published 3 days ago, March 4, 2022

From article…

Christopher Nolan will finally make his biopic. The famous director had a stunted attempt to mount one two decades ago when he penned a screenplay about aviator Howard Hughes, which he later described as the best screenplay he’s ever written. The project died when Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator went into production first. Now, Nolan is working on a film about the father of the atomic bomb, J. Robert Oppenheimer.

However, Oppenheimer may very well break conventional biopic expectations. Nolan took his script to Universal after a rift with longtime collaborators Warner Bros. regarding the studio’s new policies of distribution via streaming, and Universal is describing the film as an epic thriller about an enigmatic man.

Cast in the lead role, Cillian Murphy has stated that “the story is there, everybody knows what happened, but Chris is telling it in a different way, as with Chris you would expect. That’s all I can say.”

The picture has amassed a formidable cast and crew. The script is by Nolan, adapted from the Pultizer-winning book American Prometheus. Ludwig Goransson will write the music, Hoyte Van Hoytema will work as the film’s cinematographer, Emily Blunt will play Oppenheimer’s wife, Matt Damon will be the director of the Manhattan Project, which was responsible for the bomb’s development, and Robert Downey Jr. will be the chairman of a commission that questioned Oppenheimer’s loyalty to the United States.

In further casting news, Florence Pugh was announced as a Communist Party member who had an affair with Oppenheimer that alarmed U.S. officials, Benny Safdie was cast as Edward Teller who worked with Oppenheimer and was later the father of the hydrogen bomb, Rami Malek joined in an unknown scientist role, and Kenneth Branagh and Dane DeHaan were recently added to the star-studded list.

Source: Explained: What is Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer Based on?

Biography: Arthur Conan doyle

Beeton’s Christmas Annual of 1887, where “A Study in Scarlet” was first published

Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle was born on May 22, 1859, in Edinburgh, Scotland.

The Doyles were a prosperous Irish-Catholic family. Charles Altamont Doyle, Arthur’s father, a chronic alcoholic, was a moderately successful artist, who apart from fathering a brilliant son, never accomplished anything of note.

At the age of twenty-two, Charles had married Mary Foley, a vivacious and well educated young woman of seventeen. Mary Doyle had a passion for books and was a master storyteller. Her son Arthur wrote of his mother’s gift of “sinking her voice to a horror-stricken whisper” when she reached the culminating point of a story. There was little money in the family and even less harmony on account of his father’s excesses and erratic behaviour.

Arthur’s touching description of his mother’s beneficial influence is also poignantly described in his autobiography, “In my early childhood, as far as I can remember anything at all, the vivid stories she would tell me stand out so clearly that they obscure the real facts of my life.”

Editor’s Note: See a recent find, Radio plays of Holmes & Watson on Spotify… https://open.spotify.com/album/1gtX8EOWFFkauVx0BGN9Nh

Source: Biography, Arthur Conan Doyle