On this episode of the Lit Show Deborah Kennedy speaks to R. Clifton Spargo, an Arts Fellow and MFA candidate in fiction at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about his debut novel Beautiful Fools: The Last Affair of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald.
Spargo’s stories have appeared in the Antioch Review, FICTION, Glimmer Train, SOMA, and the Kenyon Review, among others. He’s also published essays on literature, culture, and rock music in Raritan, Commonweal, the Yale Review and the Chicago Tribune. He currently writes a blog, The HI/LO, on the interplay between high and low cultures for HuffingtonPost.
In Beautiful Fools, Spargo delves deeply into the final moments of one of America’s most storied couples as they take a last trip together to Cuba in 1939. At this pivotal time in world history, Scott and Zelda are experiencing internal wars of their own and what begins as a vacation ends.
Tom Perrotta calls Beautiful Fools “a vivid and revealing look at two charismatic, self-destructive people, and the love that sustained and ruined them . . . It’s a real feat of historical imagination and novelistic empathy.”