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The talents Maxwell Perkins nurtured were known worldwide: F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Thomas Wolfe among numerous others. But the man himself remained a mystery, a backstage presence who served these authors not only as editor but as critic, career manager, moneylender, psychoanalyst, confessor and friend. This outstanding biography, a winner of the National Book Award, is the first to explore the fascinating life of this editor extraordinaire in both professional and personal domains. It tells not only of Perkins' stormy marriage and secret twenty-five-year romance with Elizabeth Lemmon, but also of his intensely intimate relationships with the leading literary lights of the twentieth century.