Perhaps the 1,224 page historical novel published in 1933 and award winning movie released in 1936 starring Fredric March, Olivia de Havilland, Claude Rains, and Gale Sondergaard were eclipsed by Gone with the Wind. Coming out in book form in 1936 and on film in 1939, it had a more memorable leading character via Hollywood. The subject of the American Civil War or the War for Southern Independence was more relevant to both Americans and Europeans than the Napoleonic era in Europe in 1933. More than likely, Mr. Allen would have enjoyed an everlasting international reputation in 1833 than 1933. Timing can be everything.
Anthony Adverse has brilliantly memorable characters, plotlines, action, and tremendous scope. It is beautifully written with outstanding mood and nuance; a truly great work of art; Hervey Allen had a great imagination and artistic sensibility. How is it possible literary legacy could be so utterly remiss of good judgment and taste level?