Renata Adler was born in Milan and raised in Connecticut. She received a B.A. from Bryn Mawr, an M.A. from Harvard, a D.d’E.S. from the Sorbonne, a J.D. from Yale Law School, and an LL.D. (honorary) from Georgetown. Adler became a staff writer at The New Yorker in 1963 and, except for a year as the chief film critic of The New York Times, remained at The New Yorker for the next four decades. Her books include A Year in the Dark (1969); Toward a Radical Middle (1970); Reckless Disregard: Westmoreland v. CBS et al., Sharon v. Time (1986); Canaries in the Mineshaft (2001); Gone: The Last Days of The New Yorker (1999); Irreparable Harm: The U.S. Supreme Court and The Decision That Made George W. Bush President (2004); and the novels Speedboat (1976; winner of the Ernest Hemingway Award for Best First Novel) and Pitch Dark (1983).
“What’s new. What else. What next. What’s happened here.” Pitch Dark, Renata Adler’s follow-up to her prize-winning novel Speedboat, is a book of questions, questions that bedevil Kate Ennis as she considers her relationship with her married lover. “A moving, infuriating, tantalizing book.”—The Boston Globe
Speedboat—a novel, a memoir, a lyric essay?—all questions of category fall away in its reading. What remains is Renata Adler’s voice, perceptive, wry, brilliant, making what sense she can of the late 20th-century condition. Speedboat was a revelation to writers as different as Elizabeth Hardwick and David Foster Wallace, and its true influence is only beginning to be felt.