James Jones was born in Robinson, Illinois on November 6, 1921. He was unable to afford college, so he enlisted in the Army in 1939. His experiences during World War II inspired his best-known works: From Here to Eternity, which won the National Book Award in 1952, The Thin Red Line, and Whistle. His other works include The Pistol, Go to the Widow-Maker, The Ice-Cream Headache and Other Stories, and The Merry Month of May. Many of his books were adapted into movies including From Here to Eternity, Some Came Running, and The Thin Red Line. He died of congestive heart failure on May 9, 1977.
Francine Prose was born on April 1, 1947. She graduated from Radcliffe College in 1968. She received the PEN Translation Prize in 1988 and received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1991. Francine Prose novel The Glorious Ones, has been adapted into a musical with the same title by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. It ran at the Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City in the fall of 2007. Prose has served as president of PEN American Center, a New York City based literary society of writers, editors, and translators that works to advance literature in 2007 and 2008. Prose novel, Blue Angel, a satire about sexual harassment on college campuses, was a finalist for the National Book Award. One of her novels, Household Saints, was adapted for a movie by Nancy Savoca. In 2014 her title Lovers at the Chameleon Club - Paris 1932, made The New York Times Best Seller List.