The literary critic Malcolm Cowley called The Man with the Golden Arm "Algren's defense of the individual," while Carl Sandburg wrote of its "strange midnight dignity." A literary tour de force, here is a novel unlike any other, one in which drug addiction, poverty, and human failure somehow suggest a defense of human dignity and a reason for hope.
About: A novel of rare genius, The Man with the Golden Arm describes the dissolution of a card-dealing WWII veteran named Frankie Machine, caught in the act of slowly cutting his own heart into wafer-thin slices.
About: Hero Francis Majcinek, called Frankie Machine, returns to Chicago from World War II with a Purple Heart and an addiction to morphine, which he relies on to overcome the pain of a war injury and to numb the guilt he feels for a drunken spree that put his wife, Sophie, in a wheelchair.
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