Tom Wolfe,  a critical biography

Twayne, 1995

Click on the cover and see if you can find the book online somewhere.

I sort of took this book on as a dare. I wasn’t a huge Tom Wolfe fan right out of the box — those early books gave me a headache — but after The Right Stuff, I was hooked. I went back and tried the early stuff again and I got it.

I had done a book in the Twayne series on American authors on Hunter S. Thompson, and Wolfe seemed the logical next challenge.

This as a fun book to write. I spent about two years doing the research, then wrote it in one big frenzy in late May 1994.

Tom Wolfe had been somewhat helpful — from a distance, of course — but was pleased with the result. When he read it, he told me I had helped him recall some of the times of his life he had forgotten.

Nice cover photo by Donald Levan, from one of Tom’s earlier visits to the University of Florida. Always hated the cover design, though.

Click on me to watch the Learning Channel episode of The Great Books devoted to ‘The Right Stuff.’ I’m one of the talking heads.

Read my appreciation of Tom Wolfe from The Conversation, “Tom Wolfe Elevated Journalism to Enduring Literature”

Read my interview with Wolfe about heroism, “I Want a Hero”

Read a brief memoir called  “The Wolfe Man.