Author(s): Gore Vidal
A gripping tale of men struggling against nature and themselves, "Williwaw" was Gore Vidal's first novel, written at 19 when he was first mate of a US Army freight supply ship stationed in the Aleutian Islands. Here he writes of a ship caught plying the lethal, frigid Arctic waters during storm season. Tensions run high among the edgy crew and uneasy passengers even before the cruel wind that gives the book its title suddenly sweeps down from the mountains. Vividly drawn characters and a compelling murder plot combine to make "Williwaw" a classic war novel.
Gore Vidal was born in 1925 and raised in Washington, D.C. After graduating from Philips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire, Vidal enlisted in the army and served in the Aleutian Islands. Among Vidal's other works of fiction are "Burr, Myra Breckenridge," and "Lincoln." He won the National Book Award in 1993 for his essay collection "United States." For Broadway, he wrote the prize-winning play "The Best Man" (1960, revived 2000).