P. M. Pasinetti of Saturday Review, for example, explained that Fante, "as he avoids the horrors of cuteness in dealing with his comic effects, avoids pretentiousness in handling his serious theme." Writing in the New York Herald Tribune Book Review, Joanna Spencer was "surprised that the significant religious experience should have been coupled with such a lighthearted, charming account of pregnancy." Full of Life was condensed by the Reader's Digest, translated into German and Italian, and was filmed in 1957. Fante wrote the screen adaptation of his novel, for which he received an Academy Award nomination.
John Fante began writing in 1929 and published his first short story in 1932. His first novel, Wait Until Spring, Bandini, was published in 1938 and was the first of his Arturo Bandini series of novels, which also include The Road to Los Angeles and Ask the Dust. A prolific screenwriter, he was stricken with diabetes in 1955. Complications from the disease brought about his blindness in 1978 and, within two years, the amputation of both legs. He continued to write by dictation to his wife, Joyce, and published Dreams from Bunker Hill, the final installment of the Arturo Bandini series, in 1982. He died on May 8, 1983, at the age of seventy-four.