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Thornton Wilder (1897-1975) was a playwright and novelist who won three Pulitzers and one National Book Award, but today he is remembered, if at all, as the writer behind countless school productions of Our Town and Skin of Our Teeth. This new biography by the talented Penelope Niven (Thornton Wilder; Swimming Lessons) draws on extensive, previously unavailable personal papers to present Wilder as a living, breathing, often conflicted man. By placing the U.S. diplomat's son within the context of his fractious Wisconsin family, Niven reveals some of the reasons behind both his strong work ethic and his deep self-doubt. A fascinating, probing look at a major writer of his time.