Friday, May 07, 2010

Patricia Highsmith is a writer I really like and have always found her life story interesting. I read Beautiful Shadow, a previous big bio book on her I liked but was a little bummed that not even a page was devoted to researching her golden age comic work. The writer must have been as dismissive of that period of her working life as Highsmith was but I thought it was a major weakness of a otherwise great book.

This new bio corrects that giving as thorough a reading of that period of her life (as well as all others) as possible within the boundaries of this book. She never discussed and pretty much buried her comic book script work even tho she worked in the industry for 7 years. There is even a photo of her rough outline for a Golden Arrow story, the only fragment of comic work she accidentally saved tho her diaries mention some of the other writers and editors she worked with. The writer argues that those seven years of writing duality/alter ego stories had a bigger effect on
Highsmith's themes then she would care to admit. A great bio so far, I'm about halfway through.
Now I want to watch Strangers on a Train and the American Friend again.

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