O'HARA, John

(1905 - 1970)
They say great themes make great novels. but what these young writers don't understand is that there is no greater theme than men and women.

John O’Hara was an American writer who first became known for his short stories before the release of his bestselling novels Appointment in Samarra (1934) and Butterfield 8 (1935). He was born in Pottsville, Pennsylvania to members of the eastern Pennsylvania ‘gentry’ but his Irish-Catholic roots meant he experienced a certain level of existing outside the WASP status quo. He was named Class Poet in 1924 at his secondary school but due to his father’s death around this time, his dreams of Yale were dashed due to lack of funds. He made a career in journalism before garnering literary successes.  

A great many of O’Hara’s novels take place in a fictionalized version of his home town which he calls ‘Gibbsville’, partly named after his friend and editor from The New Yorker, Wolcott Gibbs. O’Hara contributed more short stories to The New Yorker than any other writer.  Butterfield 8 was made into a film in 1960 for which Elizabeth Taylor won an Oscar. 

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 John O'HARA

Books by this author

Ourselves to Know

O'HARA, John


A Rage to Live

O'HARA, John


The Instrument

O'HARA, John