David Foster Wallace was the leading literary light of his era, a writer who not only captivated readers with his prose but also mesmerized them with his brilliant mind. He died by suicide at the age of forty-six in 2008.
In this, the first biography of the author, written with the cooperation of Wallace’s family and friends and with access to hundreds of his unpublished letters, manuscripts, and audio tapes, D. T. Max sets out to chart Wallace’s tormented, anguished and often triumphant battle to succeed as a novelist as he fights off depression and addiction–to pot, to television, to sex–to emerge with his masterpiece Infinite Jest.
Nominated one of the best books of the year by:
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Praise for Every Love Story is a Ghost Story
“This book is very well researched, deeply sympathetic, and incredibly painful to read. We should feel grateful that this story was told by someone as talented and responsible as D.T. Max.” – Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King
“This book should be handed to anyone who wants to write, if only to remind the aspiring writer that becoming a voice of generational significance turns out to be very poor insulation indeed from struggle, fear, and despair. D. T. Max is beautifully attuned to Wallace’s strengths, whether personal or literary, and bracingly clear-sighted on his flaws. The result is a book that’s moving, surprising (Wallace voted for Reagan?), and hugely disquieting. If you love Wallace’s work, you obviously need to read this book; if you don’t love Wallace’s work, you especially need to read this book.” —Tom Bissell, author of The Father of All Things
“This is a book about being human, living human, writing human–Wallace’s own subjects–and chronicles with real compassion the complex fierce joy Wallace took in being alive.” —Brenda Wineapple, author of White Heat