I can’t be the only reader who learned a lot about World War II through the engrossing, epic novels of Herman Wouk. The Winds of War (1971) and War and Remembrance (1978), read furtively beneath my desk in seventh-grade math class, decades after they were first published, set the personal dramas of two families—the American Henrys, a military family, and the Italian-Jewish Jastrows—against a richly detailed chronicle of World War II. (Wouk himself served in WWII, in the Pacific.)
Well, at 96, Herman Wouk has sold a new novel—his first since 2004—about a group of filmmakers who are working on a life of Moses. The Lawgiver is told through “letters, memos, emails, journals, news articles, recorded talk, tweets, Skype transcripts, and text messages,” according to a press release from Simon & Schuster, who bought the book (their current publisher, Jonathan Karp, is a huge Wouk fan).
Karp says in the press release:
“Within just a few pages I was captivated, once again in the thrall of Wouk’s sharply conceived characters, amusing narration, irresistible command of story, and the wisdom of a lifetime. I found myself marveling at the verve and wit of this great American storyteller, now 96. The insights into Moses have remarkable vitality and depth. His heroine, Margo (‘Mashie’) is a twenty-first century incarnation of one of my favorite literary characters of all time, Marjorie Morningstar.”
A publication date hasn’t been announced yet, but the book is rumored to be scheduled for this fall. Any Wouk fans out there looking forward to this one?