The House That George Built
Random House, $11.95, 335 pp.
On October 24, 1937, Cole Porter was riding with Countess Edith di Zoppola and Duke de Verdura at the Piping Rock Club in Locust Valley, New York, when his horse stumbled, rolled over him, and crushed both his legs. He never had a day without pain thereafter. Sometimes he could ease the agony with alcohol or opioids, but he relied mainly on pride, will power, work, and company to see him through. Wilfrid Sheed, who served as Commonweal’s drama critic and book-review editor from 1964...
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