Library Journal: “Fannie: The Talent for Success of Writer Fannie Hurst”

Library Journal 124.13

“Fannie: The Talent for Success of Writer Fannie Hurst”

August 1999

By Carol Ann McAllister

Fannie Hurst (1885-1968) was one of the highest paid and most popular U.S. women fiction writers in the first half of the 20th century. A prolific and much-in-demand celebrity author, in her heyday she had short stories, novels, plays. and movie adaptations (Back Street and Imitation of Life) simultaneously before the public. Although her stories of the woes of shopgirls, maids, and cast-off mistresses were favorites with the public, most critics derided her overwrought style and sentimental plots. Her mass-appeal “tearjerkers” fell out of fashion, and after her death her writing faded rapidly into obscurity. Journalist Kroeger follows Hurst’s career with the thoroughness of an investigative reporter and the uncritical zeal of a fan-the facts are well documented, but there is a minimum of analysis or criticism. Fannie will please readers interested in the maneuvers of this fledgling feminist and social reformer will also offering a starting point for those seeking insight into the cultural and social attitudes of the early part of this century. Recommended for public and academic libraries.– Carol Ann McAllister, Coll. of William & Mary Lib., Williamsburg, VA

Copyright Cahners Magazine Division of Reed Publishing USA Aug 1999

Brooke for Tabletmag.com on a rabbincal smackdown over women’s suffrage … THE SUFFRAGENTS launches Sept. 1 … NHD contestants, please read this.