To open this book is to enter the perilous, thrilling world of Billy Bathgate, the brazen boy who is accepted into the inner circle of the notorious Dutch Schultz gang. Like an urban Tom Sawyer, Billy takes us along on his fateful adventures as he becomes good-luck charm, apprentice, and finally protégé to one of the great murdering gangsters of the Depression-era underworld in New York City. The luminous transformation of fact into fiction that is E. L. Doctorow’s trademark comes to triumphant fruition in Billy Bathgate, a peerless coming-of-age tale and one of Doctorow’s boldest and most beloved bestsellers.
About the Author
E. L. Doctorow’s novels include The March, City of God, The Waterworks, Welcome to Hard Times, The Book of Daniel, Ragtime, Loon Lake, Lives of the Poets, World’s Fair, and Billy Bathgate. His work has been published in thirty-two languages. Among his honors are the National Book Award, three National Book Critics Circle awards, two PEN/Faulkner awards, the Edith Wharton Citation for Fiction, the William Dean Howells Medal of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the presidentially conferred National Humanities Medal. E. L. Doctorow lives in New York.
Praise for Billy Bathgate…
“A wonderful addition to the ranks of American boy heroes . . . Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer with more poetry, Holden Caulfield with more zest and spirit . . . The kind of book you find yourself finishing at three in the morning after promising at midnight that you’ll stop at the next page.”—New York Times Book Review
“A modern American masterpiece . . . Doctorow takes up the legacies of Fitzgerald and Cheever and adds to them a savage and erotic splendor of his own.”—John le Carré
“Indelible in its fierce energy, its relentless irony, its rawness.”—Philadelphia Inquirer
“Riveting . . . mesmerizing . . . unforgettable.”—Time
“Enthralling.”—Los Angeles Times