Posted on May 23, 2021 at 8:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Here are the literary birthdays to celebrate over the week of May 23, 2021.

Margaret Fuller (May 23, 1810): The first edition of Fuller’s Woman in the Nineteenth Century, which urges young women to seek greater independence through education, sold out within a week.

Mitch Albom (May 23, 1958): Among Albom’s bestselling books that have also been made into hit movies are Tuesdays With Morrie and Five People You Meet in Heaven.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (May 25, 1803): Most famous for his essay “Self-Reliance,” Emerson’s personal manifestos (Nature and Address) rallied the literary movement known as Transcendentalism.

Raymond Carver (May 25, 1938). Carver gained literary acclaim with the short-story collection Will You Please Be Quiet, Please? and is credited with reviving the English-language short story.

Alexander Pushkin (May 26, 1799). Pushkin’s play Boris Godunov and novel Eugene Onegin are among the cornerstones of modern Russian literature.

Dashiell Hammett (May 27, 1894): Hammett is credited with launching the hard-boiled detective school of writing, with his third novel, The Maltese Falcon, introducing both Hammett and the character Sam Spade to the world.

Rachel Carson (May 27, 1907). Carson’s Silent Spring wasn’t even her first bestseller — that honor goes to 1951’s The Sea Around Us, which also won a National Book Award.

Maeve Binchy (May 28, 1940). Among the novels that gained Binchy fame for their depictions of relationships and small-town life were Firefly Summer, Circle of Friends, and Tara Road.

G. K. Chesterton (May 29, 1874). Chesterton worked his interest in social criticism into fiction, like the novel The Man Who Was Thursday and the short stories starring priest-sleuth Father Brown, but also wrote extensively about theology and literary criticism.

Birthdays sourced from Calendar of Literary Facts; biographical information sourced from Encyclopedia Britannica and author websites. Did we miss someone? Email and let us know.

Categories: Today in Books

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