There are two fave Thurber biographies in this house: Burton Bernstein’s Thurber: A Biography, and Harrison Kinney’s James Thurber: His Life And Times. I like to think of them as perfect bookends to any Thurber collection.
Bernstein’s (left), at 532 pages is the quick read; Kinney’s is 1,238. I think of the two books as I think of my two favorite Beatle biographies: Shout, by Philip Norman (c.400 pages), and Tune In by Mark Lewisohn (c.900 pages). If you want a great read, well written, but don’t want to submerge, then it’s Norman’s Beatle book. If you want to go deep and stay there, it’s Lewisohn’s. Same applies to Bernstein and Kinney.
Both these books have appeared in paperback and are easily found. I just may go back to Kinney’s right after I finish re-reading Tune In.
Video conference hell from Lisa Rothstein, who began contributing to The New Yorker in August of 2019.