Posted on February 26, 2023 at 8:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek
Here are the literary birthdays to celebrate over the week of February 26, 2023.
Victor Hugo (February 26, 1802): Hugo’s global fame comes from his novels The Hunchback of Notre-Dame and Les Misérables, though he’s also considered among the finest French poets.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (February 27, 1807): Immensely popular during his lifetime for such works as The Song of Hiawatha and “Paul Revere’s Ride,” Longfellow was the first American to be honored with a bust in Westminster Abbey’s Poets’ Corner.
Angelina Weld Grimké (February 27, 1880): Grimké’s play Rachel was among the first written by a black woman about black issues; she is better known for such poems as “El Beso,” “Dawn,” “Beware Lest He Awakes,” and “The Black Finger.”
Edna St. Vincent Millay (February 27, 1892): Millay was known in her time and beyond as one of the greatest American poets, with her collection The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver receiving a Pulitzer Prize.
John Steinbeck (February 27, 1902): Though some of his works are lighter in tone, Steinbeck — a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner — is best known for the social criticism and tragedy of The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, and East of Eden.
James T. Farrell (February 27, 1904): Farrell is best known for his Studs Lonigan trilogy, and The Face of Time — starring a character from the trilogy — is also considered among his best works.
Ralph Ellison (March 1, 1914): Ellison’s first novel — and the only one published during his lifetime — was Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award.
Tom Wolfe (March 2, 1931): Wolfe’s essay collection The Kandy-Kolored Tangerine-Flake Streamline Baby helped launch the New Journalism movement, while The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test became a counterculture classic; he also wrote novels including The Bonfire of the Vanities.
John Irving (March 2, 1942): Irving is best known for The World According to Garp, A Prayer for Owen Meany, and The Cider House Rules; the latter two also became movies.
Dr. Seuss (March 2, 1904): Seuss's second book, Horton Hatches the Egg, launched a career full of bestsellers, including The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, The Lorax, and many more; some reports credit him with over 600 million books sold worldwide.
Khaled Hosseini (March 4, 1965): Among Hosseini's highly acclaimed novels are The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and And the Mountains Echoed, which together have been published in over seventy countries and sold more than 40 million copies worldwide.
Dav Pilkey (March 4, 1966): Pilkey is best known for his Captain Underpants series and the Dog Man graphic novels, but he also received a Caldecott Honor for his standalone book The Paperboy.
Categories: Today in Books