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About Lardner

Updated 10 January 2006

Organized by author's last name

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Bruccoli, Matthew J. and Richard Layman. Ring W. Lardner: A Descriptive Bibliography.
  Pittsburgh series in bibliography. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1976. An indispensable aid in the study and collection of Ring Lardner. All sections are cross-referenced and indexed for easy use.
Elder, Donald. Ring Lardner. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1956.
  A comprehensive and entertaining account of the life and work of Lardner; contains many copies of letters, personal anecdotes, and writing samples; has an index and a partial list of Lardner's published work.
Evans, Elizabeth. Ring Lardner. New York: Ungar, 1979.
  Concise guide to Lardner's life and work.
Friedrich, Otto. Ring Lardner. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1965.
  Similar in purpose and content to Evans' book.
Geismar, Maxwell. Ring Lardner and the Portrait of Folly. New York: Crowell, 1972.
  A good, concise overview of the life and works of Lardner for the layman or someone in need of just the basics; presents Lardner's writing as something to be enjoyed (by implication though, not always to be taken seriously). Audience appears to be the average reader rather than the student.
Lardner, Ring. Ring Around Max: The Correspondence of Ring Lardner and Max Perkins.
  Ed. Clifford M. Caruthers. Dekalb: Northern Illinois UP, 1973.

Besides the letters, this includes a chronological listing of first publications of Ring Lardner's book and magazine pieces and a reprint of Fitzgerald's New Republic piece, "Ring." Caruthers does a very good job of explaining references and providing context so that it is an interesting read as well as an informative one.

---. Letters From Ring. Ed. Clifford M. Caruthers. Flint, MI: Waldon Press, 1979.
  Only published collection of Ring's correspondence. Only Lardner's side of the correspondence exists in most cases, because he threw away the responses.
Lardner, Ring Jr. The Lardners: My Family Remembered. New York: Harper and Row,

Offers unique perspective on the life of his father and entertaining accounts of how the Lardner children were raised. Only flaw is that it doesn't expand further on the lives of his brothers, all of whom are fascinating.

---.  I'd Hate Myself in the Morning.  New York: Thunder's Mouth Press, 2000.

Though the focus of the book is Lardner's own experiences in the movie business and his life as last remaining survivor of the Hollywood 10, the early chapters go into greater detail than his first book about the influence of his father and of his brother Jim. 

Patrick, Walton R. Ring Lardner. New York: Twayne Publishers, 1963.
  A guide to the writing of Lardner; includes studies of style and content, a chronology of Lardner's life, and bibliographical information (see Evans and Freidrich).
Robinson, Douglas. Ring Lardner and the Other. New York: Oxford University Press, 1992.
  The first extended postmodern criticism of Lardner; provides an in-depth study of "Who Dealt?" and explains how Lardner could live one way (Majoritarian) and write another (Minoritarian); includes an excellent critical bibliography.
Yardley, Jonathan. Ring: A Biography of Ring Lardner. New York: Random House, 1977.
  The only thorough Lardner biography other than Elder's; provides good background information about the game of baseball as it was played during Ring's lifetime; benefits from information gleaned from letters, but lacks the first hand information available at the time of the first biography.  The author seems to go out of his way to stress how insignificant his subject is.  .




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