I Married a Communist

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9780099287834: I Married a Communist

I Married a Communist is the story of the rise and fall of Ira Ringold, a big American roughneck who begins life as a teenage ditch digger in 1930s Newark, becomes a big-time 1940s radio star, and is destroyed, both as a performer and a man, in the McCarthy witch-hunt of the 1950s. In his heyday as a star - and as a zealous, bullying supporter of 'progressive' political causes - Ira married Hollywood's beloved silent-film star, Eve Frame. Their glamorous honeymoon in her Manhattan townhouse is short-lived, however, and it is the publication of Eve's scandalous bestselling expose that identifies him as 'an American taking his orders from Moscow'. In this story of cruelty, betrayal, and revenge spilling over into the public arena from their origins in Ira's turbulent personal life, Philip Roth has written a brilliant fictional portrayal of that treacherous post-war epoch when anti-Communist fever not only infected national politics but traumatised the intimate, innermost lives of friends and families, husbands and wives, parents and children.

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Review:

Iron Rinn (né Ira Ringold) is a self-educated radio actor, married to a spoilt, rags-to-riches beauty, silent-film star Eve Frame (née Chave Fromkin). He is a Communist, and a "sucker for suffering," locked into the cycle of violence from which he has emerged. She has risen by assiduous imitation of what is "classy"--which seems to include a wide swathe of anti-Semitism--and ultimately denounces her husband as a Soviet spook. And who would be the narrator of this McCarthy-era meltdown? None other than Philip Roth's longtime alter ego, Nathan Zuckerman, who learns the full tragedy several decades later, owing to a chance encounter with Ira's brother: "I'm the only person living who knows Ira's story," 90-year-old Murray Ringold tells Nathan, "you're the only person still living who cares about it."

Characteristically, Nathan also discovers that his own story was bound up with the blacklistings and ruined careers of the immediate postwar period. It seems that he had been tainted by his association with the Ringolds--Murray was in fact his high-school teacher--and was denied the Fulbright scholarship he deserved. "They had you down for Ira's nephew," Murray tells Nathan. "The FBI didn't always get everything right." Roth's acerbic style and keen eye for emotional detail goes to the heart of this moment of high tragedy in which the American dream was damaged beyond repair. --Lisa Jardine

About the Author:

In 1997, Philip Roth won the Pulitzer Prize for American Pastoral. In 1998 he received the National Medal of Arts at the White House and in 2002 the highest award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the Gold Medal in Fiction, previously awarded to John Dos Passos, William Faulkner and Saul Bellow, among others. He has twice won the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. He has won the PEN/Faulkner Award three times. In 2005 The Plot Against America received the Society of American Historians' Prize for "the outstanding historical novel on an American theme for 2003-2004." Recently Roth received PEN's two most prestigious prizes: in 2006 the PEN/Nabokov Award 'for a body of work...of enduring originality and consummate craftmanship' and in 2007 the PEN/Saul Bellow Award for achievement in American Fiction, given to a writer whose 'scale of achievement over a sustained career...places him or her in the highest rank of American literature.' Roth is the only living American writer to have his work published in a comprehensive, definitive edition by the Library of America. The last of the eight volumes is scheduled for publication in 2013.

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. I Married a Communist is the story of the rise and fall of Ira Ringold, a big American roughneck who begins life as a teenage ditch digger in 1930s Newark, becomes a big-time 1940s radio star, and is destroyed, both as a performer and a man, in the McCarthy witch-hunt of the 1950s. In his heyday as a star - and as a zealous, bullying supporter of progressive political causes - Ira married Hollywood s beloved silent-film star, Eve Frame. Their glamorous honeymoon in her Manhattan townhouse is short-lived, however, and it is the publication of Eve s scandalous bestselling expose that identifies him as an American taking his orders from Moscow . In this story of cruelty, betrayal, and revenge spilling over into the public arena from their origins in Ira s turbulent personal life, Philip Roth has written a brilliant fictional portrayal of that treacherous post-war epoch when anti-Communist fever not only infected national politics but traumatised the intimate, innermost lives of friends and families, husbands and wives, parents and children. Bookseller Inventory # LIB9780099287834

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. I Married a Communist is the story of the rise and fall of Ira Ringold, a big American roughneck who begins life as a teenage ditch digger in 1930s Newark, becomes a big-time 1940s radio star, and is destroyed, both as a performer and a man, in the McCarthy witch-hunt of the 1950s. In his heyday as a star - and as a zealous, bullying supporter of progressive political causes - Ira married Hollywood s beloved silent-film star, Eve Frame. Their glamorous honeymoon in her Manhattan townhouse is short-lived, however, and it is the publication of Eve s scandalous bestselling expose that identifies him as an American taking his orders from Moscow . In this story of cruelty, betrayal, and revenge spilling over into the public arena from their origins in Ira s turbulent personal life, Philip Roth has written a brilliant fictional portrayal of that treacherous post-war epoch when anti-Communist fever not only infected national politics but traumatised the intimate, innermost lives of friends and families, husbands and wives, parents and children. Bookseller Inventory # LIB9780099287834

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Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. 1999. Paperback. Radio actor Iron Rinn is a roughneck blighted by a brutal personal secret from which he is perpetually in flight. An idealistic Communist turned popular performer, he marries America's reigning radio actress and silent movie star, Eve Frame. However, both his marriage and his life collapse. Num Pages: 336 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 129 x 23. Weight in Grams: 242. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780099287834

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Book Description Vintage, 1999. Book Condition: New. 1999. Paperback. Radio actor Iron Rinn is a roughneck blighted by a brutal personal secret from which he is perpetually in flight. An idealistic Communist turned popular performer, he marries America's reigning radio actress and silent movie star, Eve Frame. However, both his marriage and his life collapse. Num Pages: 336 pages. BIC Classification: FA. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 129 x 23. Weight in Grams: 242. . . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780099287834

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Book Description Vintage Publishing. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, I Married a Communist, Philip Roth, I Married a Communist is the story of the rise and fall of Ira Ringold, a big American roughneck who begins life as a teenage ditch digger in 1930s Newark, becomes a big-time 1940s radio star, and is destroyed, both as a performer and a man, in the McCarthy witch-hunt of the 1950s. In his heyday as a star - and as a zealous, bullying supporter of 'progressive' political causes - Ira married Hollywood's beloved silent-film star, Eve Frame. Their glamorous honeymoon in her Manhattan townhouse is short-lived, however, and it is the publication of Eve's scandalous bestselling expose that identifies him as 'an American taking his orders from Moscow'. In this story of cruelty, betrayal, and revenge spilling over into the public arena from their origins in Ira's turbulent personal life, Philip Roth has written a brilliant fictional portrayal of that treacherous post-war epoch when anti-Communist fever not only infected national politics but traumatised the intimate, innermost lives of friends and families, husbands and wives, parents and children. Bookseller Inventory # B9780099287834

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