Next Up: The Day Of The Locust
I thought this title sounded like a real pick-me-upper to read over the Christmas holidays. I’ll say I have zero familiarity with The Day of the Locust and its author, Nathanael West. So I’m coming in completely cold on this one.
It’s a short book. My version is just 150ish pages, so that’s good.
The story is about a group of struggling artists trying to make a living in 1930s Hollywood.
Other than that trivial fact, I know nothing about this book. But here’s a few facts about The Day of the Locust and Nathanael West that I gathered from some quick research.
- The Day of the Locust was published in 1939.
- In addition to being featured on the Time list, the novel was #73 on the Modern Library’s Top 100.
- The novel features a character named Homer Simpson. Yes, Homer Simpson. I’ll definitely be exploring that connection, if there is one.
- It was made into a 1975 feature film of the same name, starring William Atherton and Donald Sutherland.
- Bob Dylan recorded a song called “Day of the Locusts” in 1970.
- Nathanael West was good friends with F. Scott Fitzgerald and died in a car crash the day after Fitzgerald’s death. He was only 37.
- In West’s short life, he wrote 4 novels, 2 plays, and a couple of short stories.
This one sounds like an interesting book.
I’m also intrigued by the connection between West and Fitzgerald. I’ve read that West was distraught by Fitzgerald’s death the day before when he ran a stop sign and died in a car crash.
More to come on The Day of the Locust after the holidays.