Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  James Jones  

Pen Name: None

Genre:

Born: 1921 in Robinson, Illinois

Sites:


Illinois Connection

Jones was born in Robinson.

Biographical and Professional Information

James Jones is an author who's wartime experiences inspired some of his most famous works. He witnessed the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, which led to his first published novel, ''From Here to Eternity''. ''The Thin Red Line'' reflected his combat experiences on Guadalcanal. His last novel, ''Whistle'', was based on his hospital stay in Memphis, Tennessee, recovering from surgery on an ankle he had reinjured on the island.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Thin Red Line: A Novel
ISBN: 0385324081

Delta Books. 1998

They are the men of C-for-Charlie company—“Mad” 1st Sgt. Eddie Welsh, Pvt. 1st Class Don Doll, Pvt. John Bell, Capt. James Stein, Cpl. Fife, and dozens more just like them—infantrymen who are about to land, grim and white-faced, on an atoll in the Pacific called Guadalcanal. This is their story, a shatteringly realistic walk into hell and back.


In the days ahead, some will earn medals, others will do anything they can dream up to get evacuated before they land in a muddy grave. But they will all discover the thin red line that divides the sane from the mad—and the living from the dead—in this unforgettable portrait that captures for all time the total experience of men at war.


Foreword by Francine Prose


“Brutal, direct, and powerful . . . The men are real, the words are real, death is real, imminent and immediate.”—Los Angeles Times


“A rare and splendid accomplishment . . . strong and ambitious, spacious, and as honest as any novel ever written.”—
Newsweek


“[A] major novel of combat in World War II . . . reminiscent of Stephen Crane in
The Red Badge of Courage.”—The Christian Science Monitor


The Thin Red Line moves so intensely and inexorably that it almost seems like the war it is describing.”—The New York Times Book Review

From Here to Eternity
ISBN: 0385333641

Delta. 1998

Diamond Head, Hawaii, 1941.

Pvt. Robert E. Lee Prewitt is a champion welterweight and a fine bugler.

But when he refuses to join the company's boxing team, he gets "the treatment" that may break him or kill him.

First Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden knows how to soldier better than almost anyone, yet he's risking his career to have an affair with the commanding officer's wife.

Both Warden and Prewitt are bound by a common bond:

the Army is their heart and blood . . .and, possibly, their death.

In this magnificent but brutal classic of a soldier's life, James Jones portrays the courage, violence and passions of men and women who live by unspoken codes and with unutterable despair. . .in the most important American novel to come out of World War II, a masterpiece that captures as no ther the honor and savagery of men.


From the Paperback edition.

The Pistol (Phoenix Fiction)
ISBN: 0226391868

University of Chicago Press. 2003

As bombs begin to fall on Pearl Harbor, nineteen-year-old PFC Richard Mask is wearing a pistol, a .45 caliber automatic that makes him feel connected to the army of the Wild West and Custer's Cavalry. In the chaos of his first days and weeks of the war, as Mask and his company move from Schofield Barracks to the beaches of Oahu, then to a remote mountain pass, a struggle over the pistol dominates this novella's action, providing the pathos and savagery of the story.

Some Came Running
ISBN: 0440182611

Dell Pub Co. 1979

James Jones’s saga of life in the American Midwest, newly revised five decades after it was first published and including a new foreword by his daughter, Kaylie Jones

After the blockbuster international success of From Here to Eternity, James Jones retreated from public life, making his home at the Handy Writers’ Colony in Illinois. His goal was to write something larger than a war novel, and the result, six years in the making, was Some Came Running, a stirring portrait of small-town life in the American Midwest at a time when our country and its people were striving to find their place in the new postwar world.

Five decades later, it has been revised and reedited under the direction of the Jones estate to allow for a leaner, tighter read. The result is the masterpiece Jones intended: a tale whose brutal honesty is as shocking now as on the day it was first published.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of James Jones including rare photos from the author’s estate.

Whistle (Delta World War II Library)
ISBN: 0385334249

Delta. 1999

Originally published in 1978, a rousing novel captures the pain and torment of war as four men from one infantry company are sent home after being among the first to be wounded. Reprint.

The Merry Month of May
ISBN: 1888451459

Akashic Books. 2004

“The only one of my contemporaries who I felt had more talent than myself was James Jones. And he has also been the one writer of any time for whom I felt any love.”—Norman Mailer

Paris. May, 1968. This is the Paris of the barricaded boulevards of rebelling students’ strongholds, of the literati, the sexual anarchists, the leftists—written chillingly of a time in French history closely paralleling America in the late ’60s. The reader sees, feels, smells and fears all the turmoil of the frightening social quicksand of 1968.

James Jones (1921–1977) established himself as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century with his WWII trilogy, From Here to Eternity (National Book Award winner), The Thin Red Line and Whistle.

A Touch of Danger
ISBN: 1453218483

Open Road Media. 2011

A vacation in the Greek islands becomes complicated when a private eye is drawn into the murky waters of international hashish smuggling

His name is Frank Davies, but friends and clients call him Lobo. A private eye with a law degree, Lobo doesn’t like to get rough but he’ll do it for a friend. When a rich friend sends him to Paris to retrieve some stolen money, he earns himself a trip to Greece as a reward. It’s supposed to be a vacation, but as soon as he arrives he’s working again.

First his landlady, an English woman married to a Greek, asks his help bringing her cheating husband to heel. Though he doesn’t like her, he finds himself morbidly fascinated by her train wreck of a marriage. Then he meets a countess with a blackmail problem, and offers her a little pro-bono work. As he digs beneath the island’s sunny surface, Lobo learns that no matter how beautiful the scenery, secrets are always ugly.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of James Jones including rare photos from the author’s estate.