A Death in the Family (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Published two years after the author's death, this novel won the Pulitzer Prize in 1957, and remains one of the most beautiful works in the American language. Death and family-Agee renders the collision of these in the most intimate, tender, and eloquent terms. His book is unparalleled for the sheer brilliance of its poetry, for its nuanced evocations of affection, grief, and the ways we think and feel, and for its loving attention to the gestures of everyday life.

— From John


The American classic--now available from Penguin for the first time

Published in 1957, two years after its author's death at the age of forty-five, A Death in the Family remains a near-perfect work of art, an autobiographical novel that contains one of the most evocative depictions of loss and grief ever written. As Jay Follet hurries back to his home in Knoxville, Tennessee, he is killed in a car accident--a tragedy that destroys not only a life, but also the domestic happiness and contentment of a young family. A novel of great courage, lyric force, and powerful emotion, A Death in the Family is a masterpiece of American literature.

About the Author

James Agee (1909--1955) is the author of Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, the renowned study of Alabama sharecroppers during the Depression. Born in Tennessee, he died two years before the publication of A Death in the Family, his most famous work.

Praise For…

" The work of a writer whose power with English words can make you gasp."
-Alfred Kazin, The New York Times Book Review

" It is, in the full sense, poetry. . . . The language of the book, at once luminous and discreet . . . remains in the mind."
-The New Republic

" Brilliant, moving, and written with . . . objectivity and control. . . . It is wonderfully alive."
-The New Yorker

Product Details
ISBN: 9780143115847
ISBN-10: 0143115847
Publisher: Penguin Books
Publication Date: September 1st, 2008
Pages: 310
Language: English