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Gay Talese on 'A Writer's Life'

Detail from the Cover of 'A Writer's Life'
Hear Talese Read from  'A Writer's Life'

Many credit the articles that Gay Talese wrote in the 1960s as the beginning of New Journalism. That success led to a series of books -- about New York, the city where he lives; about The New York Times, where he worked as a reporter; about a Mafia crime family; about Americans' sex lives; and about the history of his family and the immigrant experience.

In fall 2003, Esquire magazine celebrated its 70th anniversary by republishing Talese's piece "Sinatra Has a Cold" and declared it the best article in its history. At the age of 74, the writer has a new book out, called Gay Talese: A Writer's Life.

In the book, Talese details his leap from the Times to pursue a career writing books (11 in total) and long-form magazine journalism. He provides the back-story behind his profiles of Sinatra and Joe DiMaggio. And he examines the shifting path of American sexuality over the last 50 years.

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