The Wine Loving Father might be more apt title for this affectionate but clear-eyed memoir in which the American writer Anne Fadiman remembers her convivial and amusing father Clifton Fadiman, successful author, critic, columnist, publisher and MC of the popular NBC radio quiz show Information Please. A complicated self-made Jew from Brooklyn with a passion for wine, Clifton moved in the best literary circles and was heaped with honours by the time he died in 1998, but never felt he was quite good enough. Not just a book for wine buffs, but one that evokes the atmosphere of a whole era in American life.
Anne Fadiman is the sort of person who learned about sex from her father’s copy of Fanny Hill, and who once found herself poring over a 1974 Toyota Corolla manual because it was the only thing in her apartment that she had not read at least twice. Ex Libris wittily recounts a lifelong obsession with books. Writing with humour and erudition, she moves easily from anecdotes about Coleridge and Orwell to tales of her own pathologically literary family.
A Vintage Life
Anne Fadiman’s memoir of her father originated as one of several ideas for an article that she pitched to an editor at Harper’s magazine. ‘I think I could tell the story of my father’s life...Read more