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The Lost Algonquin Table-bookcover.jpg

Martin Schneider writes:

A hidden treasure has been discovered.

Unearthed from forgotten bookcases, dark desk drawers, and public archives comes The Lost Algonquin Round Table, a compendium of 50 pieces written by the Algonquin Round Table, the legendary group of writers and critics that met at New York City's Algonquin Hotel in the 1920s.

For the first time ever, the writers of the "Vicious Circle" are together in one collection, just in time to mark the 90th anniversary of their launch in 1919.

This new collection presents—for the first time—many pieces from family collections and long-lost periodicals.

Published by iUniverse and Donald Books, The Lost Algonquin Round Table is edited by Nat Benchley, grandson of Robert Benchley, and Kevin C. Fitzpatrick, friend of Emdashes, president of the Dorothy Parker Society, and author of A Journey into Dorothy Parker's New York.

The book includes:

*Humor pieces by Robert Benchley, Franklin P. Adams, Heywood Broun, Frank Sullivan, and Donald Ogden Stewart.
*Criticism from Dorothy Parker, George S. Kaufman, and Robert E. Sherwood.
*Short fiction by Laurence Stallings and Pulitzer Prize-winners Edna Ferber and Margaret Leech.
*Journalism from Alexander Woollcott, Ruth Hale, and Deems Taylor.
*Poetry by Adams, Marc Connelly, Dorothy Parker, and John V. A. Weaver.

The editors spent years searching for material. Not focusing on the humor—but not eschewing it either—they have pulled together a remarkable collection of writings that will highlight the literary skills of the famous lunch partners.

The Lost Algonquin Round Table is available as a perfect bound softcover, hardcover, and e-book. Nat Benchley and Kevin Fitzpatrick will be making several bookstore appearances and talks at literary events this summer and fall. The book will be available on August 4, 2009.

Some book signing events:

*Saturday, August 16, 11 am, Long Branch Free Public Library, 328 Broadway, Long Branch, New Jersey.
As part of the annual Dorothy Parker Day, Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will give a talk, reading and book signing. Free. Open to the public. Telephone: (732) 222-3900. Online: www.lmxac.org/longbranch/.

*Wednesday, August 19, 6 pm, The Corner Bookstore, 1313 Madison Avenue, at East 93rd Street, New York.
Official book launch and reception party. Editors Nat Benchley and Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will be on hand with special guests. Books will be available for purchase and signing. Free. Open to the public. Telephone: (212) 831-3554.

*Thursday, August 20, 8 pm, Don't Tell Mama, 343 W. 46th Street, New York.
Big Night Out presents the "1930s Idol" cabaret competition. Kevin C. Fitzpatrick will be signing/selling copies of the book plus is a judge in the show. Two drink minimum. Open to the public. Reservations encouraged. Telephone (212) 757-0788. Online: http://bnonyc.com/Big_Night_Out.html.

*Saturday, August 22, 12 pm, Algonquin Hotel, 59 West 44th Street, New York.
Algonquin Round Table Walking Tour. Editor Kevin C. Fitzpatrick has led this literary walking tour for ten years. Walk in the footsteps of the Vicious Circle and see the locations they visited, from speakeasies to old haunts. Twenty dollars per person. There will be a book signing in the lobby at 3 pm, to be followed by a small celebration to mark Dorothy Parker's birthday. Reservations encouraged. Telephone: (212) 222-7239.

*Sunday, September 27, 12 pm, Governors Island (Colonel's Row).
The Jazz Age Lawn Party and Roaring Twenties Party. Live music by Michael Arenella and the Dreamland Orchestra. Book signing 12-3 pm. Five dollars admission. Open to the public. Onilne: www.dreamlandorchestra.com.

For more book news and events, visit Donald Books.


I hope that a nod is given to the 1968 “The Algonquin Wits,” edited by Robert E. Drennan. It holds contributions by Franklin Pierce Adams, Robert Benchley, Heywood Broun, Edna Ferber, George S. Kaufman, Ring Lardner, Dorothy Parker, Harold Ross, Robert E. Sherwood and Alexander Woollcott. And — other members of the “vicious circle” of the Algonqin Hotel.

J. M. ChamberlinJuly 31, 2009

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