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William Goldman (1931-) was born in Highland Park, IL on August 12, 1931. Read Orrin's review of The Princess Bride : S. Morgenstern's Classic Tale of True Love and High Adventure: The 'Good Parts' Version, Abridged (1973)


Alex Haley (1921-92) was born in Ithaca, NY on August 11, 1921. In addition to the bestseller Roots (1976), he was the coauthor of The Autobiography of Malcolm X (1965)(see Orrin's review; Grade: A+)


Andre Dubus (1936-99) was born in Lake Charles, LA on August 11, 1936. Read Orrin's review of Selected Stories (1988) (Grade: A) & try his online story If They Knew Yvonne.


Herbert Clark Hoover (1874-1964), 31st President of the United States and the first born west of the Mississippi, was born in West Branch, IA on August 10, 1874.


Izaac Walton (1593-1683), was born in Stafford, ENG on August 9, 1593. He wrote the first great treatise on fishing, The Compleat Angler.


Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (1896-1953), author of the Pulitzer Prize winning classic The Yearling (1938), was born in Washington, DC on August 8, 1896.


August 8 is Benny Carter's birthday. The remarkable multi-instrumentalist/composer/arranger/bandleader/quiet-but-effective civil rights leader was born in NYC in 1907 and died in 2003, so this would have been #98. Until my collection of his music is completed, the following CD's give a good overview of his music:
Further Definitions
Montreux Live - 1977
1929-1940
More about Carter can be found in the definitive biography Benny Carter - A Life in American Music, or in an essay contained in Gary Giddins' "Weather Bird" collection of essays


Ann Beattie (1947-) was born on August 7, 1947. Read Orrin's review of Love Always (1985)(Grade: A)


Unbreakable (2000) (directed by M. Night [Manoj Nelliyattu] Shyamalan 1970-) Manoj Nelliyattu Shyamalan was born in Pondicherry, India on August 6 1970.


Conrad Aiken (1899-1973) was born in Savannah, GA on August 5, 1899.


Guy de Maupassant (1850-93) was born near Dieppe, France on August 5, 1850.


John Huston (1906-1987) was born in Nevada, MO on August 5, 1906. The Maltese Falcon, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, Asphalt Jungle and The Man Who Would Be King are just a few of his classic movies.


Neil Armstrong (1930-) was born in Wapakoneta, OH on August 5, 1930. Read Orrin's review of The Right Stuff (1979)(Tom Wolfe 1931-) (Grade: A+)


Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822) was born near Horsham, ENG on August 4, 1792. Brothers Judd particularly recommends Ozymandias.


Knut Hamsun (1859-1952) was born on Garmo, Norway on August 4, 1859. Read Orrin's review of Hunger (1890)


Louis "Satchmo" Armstrong (1900-1971) was born in New Orleans on August 4, 1900. The most influential figure in the history of Jazz and one of the most significant influences in 20th Century popular music, he was also a pivotal and controversial figure in the fight for Civil Rights. Brothers Judd jazz contributor Glenn Dryfoos recommends The Louis Armstrong Collection, Vol. 4: Louis Armstrong and Earl Hines


Rupert Brooke (1887-1915) was born on August 3, 1887. One of the celebrated group of WWI poets, check out his Collected poems. I can't find it off hand, but the poem with "dulce et decorum est pro patria morii" was on our SAT's.


P.D. [Phyllis Dorothy] James (1920-) was born in Oxford, ENG on August 3, 1920. Read Orrin's review of An Unsuitable Job for a Woman (1972) (Grade: B+)


Ernie Pyle (1900-45) was born in Dana, IN on August 3, 1900.


James Baldwin (1924-87) was born in New York, NY on August 2, 1924. Read Orrin's review of Go Tell it on the Mountain (Grade: B)


Myrna Loy (1905-93), one of the all-time hotties, was born in Raidersburg, MT on August 2, 1905. Brothers Judd particularly recommends The Thin Man (1934), Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House (1948) and The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932)


Herman Melville (1819-91) was born in New York, NY on August 1, 1819. Read Orrin's reviews of Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street (1853) (Grade: A-) & Billy Budd, Foretopman (1891) (Herman Melville 1819 - 1891) (Grade: A)


Francis Scott Key (1779-1843) was born in Frederick County, MD on August 1, 1779. He wrote The Star Spangled Banner on September 14, 1814 about the American flag that remained flying over Fort McHenry despite a whithering British bombardment.


William Clark (1770-1838) was born in Caroline County, VA on August 1, 1770. Read Orrin's review of Undaunted Courage: Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West (1996)(Stephen E. Ambrose 1936-) (Grade: A-)


Richard Henry Dana (1815-82) was born in Cambridge, MA on August 1, 1815.


Madison Smartt Bell (1957-) was born in Nashville, TN on August 1, 1957. Read Orrin's review of All Soul's Rising (1995)


Milton Friedman (1912-) was born in New York, NY on July 31, 1912. Author of such pivotal free market texts as A Monetary History of the United States, 1867-1960 with Anna J. Schwartz (1963), Capitalism and Freedom (1964) and Free to Choose (1981) , he won the Nobel Prize for Economics in 1976.


Emily Bronte (1818-48) was born in Yorkshire, ENG on July 30, 1818.


Archer Mayor (1950-), author of the Vermont based Joe Gunther mystery series, was born in Mount Kisco, NY on July 30, 1950.


Edwin O'Connor (1918-68) was born in Providence, RI on July 29, 1918.  Read Orrin's review of  The Last Hurrah (1956)   (Grade: A+)


Booth Tarkington (1869-1946) was born in Indianapolis, IN on July 29, 1869.  Read Orrin's review of  The Magnificent Ambersons (1918) (Grade: A)


Chester Himes (1909-84), creator of Grave Digger Jones and Coffin Ed Johnson, was born in Jefferson City, MO on July 29, 1909. Read Orrin's review of The Crazy Kill (1959) (Grade: B)


Alexis De Tocqueville (1805-59) was born in Paris, FR on July 29, 1805. Read Orrin's review of The Old Regime and the French Revolution (1856)(Grade: B+)


Kenneth Fearing (1902-61) was born in Oak Park, IL on July 28, 1902.  Read Orrin's review of  The Big Clock (1946)  (Grade: A)


Beatrix Potter (1866-1943), author of The Tale of Peter Rabbit (1902), was born outside of London, ENG on July 28, 1866


Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-88) was born in Essex, ENG on July 28, 1844.


Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-78) was born in Geneva, Switzerland on June 28, 1712. Read our comments on The Social Contract.

Joseph Mitchell  (1908-96) was born in Iona, NC on July 27, 1908.  He worked at The New Yorker for thirty years, despite having writers block for most of his later life.  Read Orrin's review of  Up in the Old Hotel and Other Stories (1992) (Grade: A+)


Aldous Huxley (1894-1963)  was born in Surrey, England on July 26, 1894.   Read Orrin's review of  Brave New World  (1932)(Grade: A)


Stanley Kubrick  (1928-1999) was born in the Bronx, NY on July 26, 1928.  Brothers Judd  recommends checking out his earlier movies The Killing (1956), Paths of Glory (1957) and Spartacus (1960)


Jean Shepherd (1929-99)  was born in Hammond, IN on July 26, 1929.   Read Orrin's review of  In God We Trust : All Others Pay Cash  (1966) (Grade: A)


George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950) was born in Dubline, IRE on July 26, 1856.  Read Orrin's review of  Pygmalion (1912)


Eric Hoffer (1902-83) was born in New York, NY on July 25, 1902. Read Orrin's review of The True Believer : Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements (1951)


Thomas Eakins (1844-1916) was born on July 25, 1844. One of America's greatest artists, he is famous for his paintings of atheletes.


The Three Musketeers (1844) (Alexandre Dumas 1802-1870) Alexandre Dumas (pere) (1802-1870) was born in Villers-Cotterêts,Aisne, France on July 24, 1802.


Lynda Carter (1951-) was born in Phoenix, AZ on July 24, 1951. Boys our age experienced many a restless evening thanks to her star-spangled bustier and golden lasso on Wonder Woman.


Robert Graves (1895-1985) was born in London on July 24, 1895. Read Orrin's reviews of I, Claudius (1934) (Grade: A+) and Sergeant Lamb's America (1940) (Grade: B+)


John D. MacDonald (1916-1986) was born in Sharon, PA on July 24, 1916. Read Orrin's review of Nightmare in Pink (1964) (Grade: C+)


Oswald Chambers (1874-1917) was born in Aberdeen, Scotland on July 24, 1874. Read Orrin's review of My Utmost for His Highest (1927)


Raymond Chandler (1888-1959) was born in Chicago, IL on July 23, 1888. Read Orrin's review of The Big Sleep (1939) (Grade: A+)


Stephen Vincent Benet (1898-1943) was born in Bethlehem, PA on July 22, 1898.


Bob Dole (1923-) was born in Russell, KS on July 22, 1923. Read Richard Ben Cramer's classic account of the men who sought the 1988 Presidential nominations, What It Takes: The Way to the White House.


Emma Lazarus (1849-1887) was born in New York, NY on July 22, 1849. Her famous poem The New Colossus appears on the base of the Statue of Liberty.


Edward Hopper ( 1882-1967) was born in Nyack, NY on July 22, 1882. In paintings like Nighthawks at the Diner, he eloquently portrayed the increasingly atomized Modern world.