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Tennessee Williams Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone (1950) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Moise and the World of Reason (1975) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Collections

27 Wagons Full of Cotton (1945) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Four Plays (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
In the Winter of Cities (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Hard Candy (1959) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Three Players of a Summer Game (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Five Plays (1962) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Knightly Quest (1966) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
One Arm, and other Stories (1967) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Dragon Country (1970) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eight Mortal Ladies Possessed (1975) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Androgyne, Mon Amour (1977) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
It Happened the Day the Sun Rose (1983) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Stopped Rocking and other Screenplays (1984) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Collected Stories (1988) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
American Blues (1990) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Baby Doll and Tiger Tail (1991) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Streetcar Named Desire and Other Plays (2000) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Baby Doll and Other Plays (2001) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Rose Tattoo and Other Plays (2001) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Collected Poems of Tennessee Williams (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Tales of Desire (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Plays

Candles to the Sun (1936) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Magic Tower (1936) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Fugitive Kind (1937) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Palooka (1937) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Spring Storm (1937) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Summer at the Lake (1937) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Fat Man's Wife (1938) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Not About Nightingales (1938) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Adam and Eve on a Ferry (1939) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Long Goodbye (1940) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Gentleman Callers (1944) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Battle of Angels (1945) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Glass Menagerie (1945) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Stairs to the Roof (1947) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Streetcar Named Desire (1947) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Summer and Smoke (1948) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Rose Tattoo (1951) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Camino Real (1953) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Baby Doll (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Orpheus Descending (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Perfect Analysis Given by a Parrot (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Suddenly Last Summer (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Sweet Bird of Youth (1959) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Period of Adjustment (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Night of the Iguana (1961) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Eccentricities of a Nighingale (1964) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore (1964) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Kingdom of Earth (1968) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Small Craft Warnings (1972) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Red Devil Battery Sign (1975) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Two-Character Play (1979) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Vieux Carre (1979) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur (1980) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Something Cloudy, something Clear (1981) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Clothes for a Summer Hotel (1981) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Memoirs (1975) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Tennessee Williams' Letters to Donald Windham 1940-1965 (1980) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Five O'Clock Angel (1990) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Selected Letters of Tennessee Williams: 1920-1945 (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Notebooks (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Tennessee Williams was an American author generally regarded one of the best playwrights ever to come out of the United States. Between the 1940s and the 1960s, he was one of the most prolific playwrights penning several award-winning plays, the most popular of which was “The Glass Menagerie”. His work is known for its dramatic flair, poetic language, heartbreaking themes, and gritty characters that have made them timeless American classics. Tennessee was born Thomas Lanier Williams III in March 1911 in Columbus, Mississippi, to straight-laced minister’s daughter Edwina Dakin Williams, and a traveling salesman Cornelius Coffin Williams. In 1918, the family moved to Louis, Missouri where Cornelius has found a job as the manager of the international Shoe Company in St. Louis. His parents were constantly fighting due his father’s violent temper and drinking. Things were even worse for the young Tennessee, who because of a serious bout of diphtheria became less robust than his father wished, resulting in a bad case father son resentment. Nonetheless, his mother was overly protective of him and showered him with love and attention. This period of his life was very important to the young author who used the troubles in his life as inspiration for his later writings. Shy and small, Tom was the victim of merciless cruelty and abuse at the Eugene Field Elementary School. Struggling to cope, he was sent to Mississippi to live with his grandparents for a year. When he came back, his mother got him a typewriter and by 1924, he got his first ever article “Isolated” published by his high school paper the Ben Blewett Junior High newspaper.

It was at University City High School where Tennessee’s writing started gaining a lot of traction as he wrote a series or highly popular short story collections and published two articles in major national newspapers. He would enroll at the University of Missouri journalism department in 1929 where he got an honorable mention in the Dramatic Arts Contest for “Beauty is the Word”, one of his earliest known plays. His father forced him to quit university in 1932 to take up a job at the shoe factory, though this never stopped the determined Tom from writing. By 1937, he had staged several plays in St. , before he enrolled at the drama department in the University of Iowa graduating in 1938 with an English degree. His name Tennessee Williams came about when being underage he had to submit his plays under a false date of birth and name. Despite lying on his application, he won the $100 prize on offer and from that time became professionally known as Tennessee Williams. It was during this time that he discovered traveling and also acknowledged that he was homosexual after having far too many of his relationships end in loneliness and sadness. The search for love became one of the major themes of his works from 1940, even as he wrote while for the most part working numerous odd jobs, in debt and broke.

Tennessee got his first major break when his play “The Glass Menagerie”, which was inspired by the characters and themes of his troubled family, became an instant hit with audiences. Opening to rave reviews in Chicago, it was soon moved to Broadway where it became an even bigger hit, setting Tennessee on the path to a successful career. The play is the story of a young man’s family whose mother tries to make a match between his disabled sister and a gentleman caller. His troubled life experiences and familial relations inspire everything in Tennessee Williams’s plays. His first play “The Glass Menagerie” received much critical acclaim that it won the best play of the season by the New York Drama Critics Circle Award. His next play “A Streetcar Named Desire” that he produced in 1947 to rave reviews would establish his name among the greats in American literature history. The play went on to win the 1948 Pulitzer Prize for Drama and together with his other play “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” were made into highly acclaimed films by Elia Kazan and Richard Brooks respectively. Several of his plays that referenced his struggles with alcoholism including his first play “The Glass Menagerie” were also made into motion pictures.

“The Glass Menagerie” is a play focusing on a family very similar to that of Tennessee Williams. Honing in on human emotions that influence the interaction between family members, it is set in St Louis during the interwar period. Amanda has found it difficult to bring up her two children after their father upped and left the family several years past. The abandonment by their father has had a profound impact on the family, which to an ordinary outsider would be the epitome of dysfunctional. Amanda tries her best to ensure that her children become the best they can be, but given that they are now adults, she has little if any authority to control their behavior. Both of the children had quit night school and Amanda’s hope of Tom becoming a business man or Laura becoming a typist have long since faded. Nonetheless, she still thinks highly of her children and glosses over their faults, which increasingly increases the odds that Tom may just become a mirror image of his father.

“A Streetcar Named Desire” is the Pulitzer Award-winning novel by Tennessee Williams that focuses on the themes of failure, love, and familial relationships. Stella Kowalski is very much in love with her husband Stanley Kowalski a war veteran, and would do anything to please him. Their life is complicated when Blanche Dubois Stella’s sister takes a streetcar named “Desire” and comes to spend her summer holidays in the Kowalski’s one bed-roomed apartment. Blanche is very different from her submissive sister being highly sexualized, which heightens the tension between her and her sister’s husband. Stanley can see beyond Blanche’s gaudy jewelry and clothes and with only a sheet separating their beds the tension rises in the sweltering heat of the summer. Stanley soon discovers Blanche’s tawdry past but Stella stands by her sister even as she is still loyal to a fault to her husband. The incredible loyalty that Stella has to both parties is what makes for an explosive conclusion that will shock almost every reader of the play.

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