He could not cable
- Frank Norris: A Life by Joseph McElrath and Jesse Crisler
Illinois, 492 pp, £24.95, January 2006, ISBN 0 252 03016 8
When Frank Norris died of appendicitis in 1902, at the age of 32, he had written six novels, as well as scores of essays and reviews. At least two of the novels, McTeague (1899) and The Octopus (1901), are recognised masterpieces, and a number of the essays, particularly those about the Spanish-American War, retain their power today. Norris’s life, on the other hand, was distinguished only by its privilege.