RARA-AVIS: Re: Erskine Caldwell...

From: jacquesdebierue ( jacquesdebierue@yahoo.com)
Date: 05 Feb 2008

--- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, "m23to53" <library.john@...> wrote:

> Am I right in saying that Caldwell's later books were first published
> in the UK? I am sure I read it in an aticle on him which said that it
> was a sign that he had lost the interest of American readers.Seems a
> sad ending to his career if true. Can anyone confirm?
> I remember in my early days in the library then that we always ordered
> his books pre-publication, as our stock selector saw him as a classic
> reprepresentative of American literature - though the issues the books
> got did not exactly show that readers felt the same.

I don't know the answer to your question about first publications, but I do recall vividly that his last novel, Annette, was really nasty. I can't imagine it attracting the masses. I think he's good enough to be considered a classic, popularity be damned. Even Faulkner doesn't have that many readers, and I suspect he was never very popular. Caldwell may be a notch below Faulkner, but at his best he is roughly in the same league.



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