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D.T. Max takes on the life of David Foster Wallace
D.T. Max takes on the life of David Foster Wallace

D.T. Max knew what he was getting into when he decided to write a biography of David Foster Wallace. In March 2009, he published a long piece in the New Yorker about Wallace's suicide and the author's inability to finish "The Pale King," the novel left incomplete at the time of his death."It was 10,000 words, an immensity," Max says of his New Yorker article by phone from Long Island, where he is spending the last dwindling days of summer with his family. But even then, he knew there was more to say. Max wanted to get to know the intricacies of Wallace's life more fully. "I felt," he recalls, "the piece made everything seem fated for his sad ending. No one lives like that."This is the...

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