FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD
This sumptuous oral biography of Eugene Walter, the best-known man you’ve never heard of, is an eyewitness history of the heart of the last century—enlivened with personal glimpses of luminaries from William Faulkner and Martha Graham to Judy Garland and Leontyne Price—and a pitch-perfect addition to the Southern literary tradition that has critics cheering.
In his 76 years, Eugene Walter ate of “the ripened heart of life,” to quote a letter from Isak Dinesen, one of his many illustrious friends. Walter savored the porch life of his native Mobile, Alabama, in the the l920s and ‘30s; stumbled into the Greenwich Village art scene in late-1940s New York; was a ubiquitous presence in Paris’s expatriate café society in the 1950s (where he was part of the Paris Review at its inception); and later, in 1960s Rome, participated in the golden age of Italian cinema. He was somehow everywhere, bringing with him a unique and contagious spirit, putting his inimitable stamp on the cultural life of the twentieth century.
“Katherine Clark…has edited Eugene Walter’s oral history into a book as amazing as the man himself.” JONATHAN YARDLEY, WASHINGTON POST BOOK WORLD
“Milking the Moon has perfect pitch and flawlessly captures Eugene’s pixilated wonderland of a life…. I love this book—and I couldn’t put it down.”
“Surprising and serendipitous.”
NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW
“Anecdotes so frothy they ought to be served with a paper parasol over crushed ice.”
“A rare literary treat…the temptation is to wolf it down all at once, but it’s much more satisfying to take your sweet time. The most unique oral history of the mid-twentieth century.”
TIMES-PICAYUNE (NEW ORLEANS)
“An exceptionally fun read.”