Novelist Donald Newlove died on August 17. He was 93.
The Erie, Pa.–born author worked as a reporter and book reviewer, and his writing, including short stories, appeared in such outlets as Esquire, Evergreen Review, New York magazine, The Saturday Review, and The Village Voice. His book-length works include The Painter Gabriel (1970), Sweet Adversity (1978), the memoir Those Drinking Days: Myself and Other Writers (1981), and a series of books on the art of writing.
Until recently, Newlove's books had been out of print for years despite rave reviews. Time called The Painter Gabriel "one of the best fictional studies of madness, descent, and purification that any American has written since Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest." The New York Times called Sweet Adversity "one of the most desperately funny books we've been given in a long time." In recent years, a number of Newlove's titles were reissued by Arlington, Mass.–based publisher Tough Poets Press.
“In my opinion, Sweet Adversity holds up as one of the greatest—and funniest—American novels ever written," Rick Schober, Newlove's publisher at Tough Poets, said. "It's really a shame that Newlove never got the level of recognition that some of his contemporaries like Kurt Vonnegut or Joseph Heller did because, based on that one novel alone, he truly deserved it."