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Ross Lockridge, Jr., was born in 1914 in Bloomington, Indiana. Lockridge committed suicide at the age of 33 in his hometown, two months after his only novel was published to great critical and popular acclaim. Herman Wouk is the bestselling author of "The Caine Mutiny," "Don't Stop the Carnival," "War and Rememberance," and "The Winds of War."
"An achievement of art and purpose, a cosmically brooding book full of significance and beauty." -- The New York Times "[A] candidate for that mythical honor, the Great American Novel, Raintree County displays unflagging industry [and] a ... magnificent vitality." -- Saturday Review "No myth is more imposing than the Great American Novel; but if it is truly unattainable, I believe that Ross Lockridge made closer approach than any other writer has, before or since." -- Fort Worth Star-Telegram "My favorite novel of all time is Raintree County . It's about American journalism, patriotism, and a star-crossed love affair a hundred years ago. Like the Bible, you can pick it up, read any page, and gain something. It's poetry. Forget the movie, if you saw it, the book is something entirely different." --Edna Buchanan, author, You Only Die Twice and Cold Case Squad "The powerful currents and depth of this great swollen river of a book remain irresistible. Raintree County doesn't have to be the great American novel to be an American classic and a classic expression of the American dream; a time and place in our history are made permanent in this book." --Richard Dyer, Boston Globe "Just how good is Raintree County ? ... Looking back at it, one is struck by the strength of its prose and the life of its characters. The Civil War section alone, well over 200 pages and the heart of the book, justifies the extravagant Great American Novel claims some critics have made for it... Had Ross Lockridge, Jr. lived, he might well have changed the direction of American writing--for that, and nothing less, was his intention." --Bruce Cook, Chicago Tribune "A work that should rank with Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel as a landmark in American fiction." -- Philadelphia Inquirer "[An] extraordinary work ... I have reread Raintree County at least once a year. It is a book that I, at least, have grown into, still grow into." -- Detroit News