Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Rick Wartzman

Los Angeles Times reporter and author, Rick Wartzman, artfully weaves the personal and the political in a book that tells the story of John Steinbeck during the era when Grapes of Wrath was the subject of a public book burning in California's Kern County in 1939. Despite winning the Pulitzer Prize, Steinbeck was suffering the strains of his collapsing first marriage, and his personal struggles are set against the larger story of a political and cultural climate that enabled rich local growers to orchestrate the banning of Steinbeck's masterpiece throughout California's Central Valley.

“The burning of The Grapes of Wrath wasn't that big of a deal in and of itself,” writes LA Times book reviewer Scott Martelle, “But it was a symbol of the times, exposing the passions and delusions of the era. And for Wartzman, it is an invitation to explore a formative event in the evolution of California and, indeed, of the nation as a whole.”

Rick Wartzman is Business Editor of the Los Angeles Times. Wartzman has been a writer and editor at The Wall Street Journal for nearly 15 years. He has covered the steel industry, aerospace, the national economy, Washington lobbying and the Clinton White House. His also the co-author, alongside Mark Arax, of The King Of California: J.G. Boswell and the Making of A Secret American Empire.

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I have enjoyed putting together our little bookstore up in Squaw Valley over the past four years. We love our bookstore and it has been your support that makes it all possible, so Thank You!

I have received many requests for an online SVCW Bookstore. Some who miss us when they are away, and others who are just tired of lugging all those hardcovers around on airplanes. There are also those writers who are honest about being broke and needing to purchase books at Amazon's discounted prices. As fellow writers, we understand your pain!

For these reasons I thought it would be fun to try our hand at a SVCW Books and Authors blog. I will track down our authors and past participants and post their books, news, reviews and information and link our SVCW books to Amazon. Ten percent of every book purchased through our blog will help support the bookstore. I am looking forward to building an online archive of the outstanding collection of books represented by authors who frequent the Community of Writers.

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Community of Writers Onsite Bookshop Manager