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Leslie Garis s grandparents, Howard and Lillian Garis, were, from the turn of the century to the 1950s, phenomenally productive (and incredibly popular) authors of books for children. Every American child grew up reading the Uncle Wiggily stories, The Bobbsey Twins and Tom Swift. House of Happy Endings tells how in a large romantic house in Amherst, Massachusetts, Leslie Garis, her two brothers, her parents and grandparents aimed to live a life that mirrored the idyllic world the elder Garises created. But inside the Dell all was not right. Roger Garis s inability to match his parents success in his own work as playwright, novelist and magazine writer led him to believe that he was a failure as father, husband and son, and eventually deepened into mental illness characterised by raging mood swings, drug abuse and bouts of debilitating and destructive depression. House of Happy Endings is Leslie Garis s mesmerising, tender and harrowing account of growing up in a wildly imaginative, loving, but fatally wounded family.
Leslie Garis has written on literary subjects for many national magazines and newspapers. She is best known for New York Times Magazine profiles of such writers as Georges Simenon, Rebecca West, John Fowles and Harold Pinter.