Louis Auchincloss 1917-2010
I've read many of Auchincloss's novels, but not all. During his long writing career he turned out over sixty books, including novels, literary criticism, and collections of short stories. Yes, he wrote about the upper class, that's what he knew. No, his work is not snobby. Yes, he was an acute observer of human behaviour, and he had a lovely dry sense of humor.
from the NYT article:
"“Class prejudice” was Mr. Auchincloss’s response to his critics. “That business of objecting to the subject material or the people that an author writes about is purely class prejudice,” he said in an interview in 1997, “and you will note that it always disappears with an author’s death. Nobody holds it against Henry James or Edith Wharton or Thackeray or Marcel Proust.”"
In fact, his work most resembles Edith Wharton, another member of privilege who spared them not in her work.
And, of course, RIP J.D. Salinger. But which one would I prefer to sit next to at a dinner party? Easy peasy, Louis of course.