If he had contributed nothing else to American pop culture, the title "Walk on the Wild Side," which later became an immortal Lou Reed (R.I.P.) song would insure that we remember Nelson Algren. But he also wrote a few books that are ripe for rediscovery. Probably his best and most famous (it was turned into a Frank Sinatra movie), "The Man with the Golden Arm" has a good claim as a key link between the social realism of Dreiser and Crane and the freewheelin' demimonde of the Beats. He's less preachy than the former and less mystical/optimistic than the latter. This deluxe edition includes reviews, criticism, photographs and appreciations from Kurt Vonnegut and Studs Terkel, among others.
1950 National Book Award - Fiction
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