• Beautiful Fools Cover

    For reviews, press, or other inquiries about Beautiful Fools contact Josie Urwin at jurwin@overlookny.com

    To invite Clifton for readings, festivals, or other speaking events, inquire at rcliftonspargo@gmail.com


    A tender and heartbreaking debut novel about F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald’s final days together

    In this evocative and meticulously detailed novel about the last romance of one of America’s greatest literary couples, R. Clifton Spargo brings to life the passionate yet tragic relationship between F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald.

    In 1939 Scott is living in Hollywood, deeply in debt and struggling to write the novel that he hopes will reclaim his name. Despite his relationship with glamorous gossip columnist Sheilah Graham, he remains fiercely loyal to Zelda, his soul mate and muse. In an attempt to fuse together their fractured marriage, Scott arranges a trip to Cuba, where, after witnessing a violent crime on their second night in Havana, the couple flees to a beach resort outside the city. But even in paradise, Scott and Zelda cannot escape the dangerous intensity of their relationship. Both cling desperately to their memories of the twenties—when Scott was a literary celebrity and Zelda was the quintessential flapper—and the voyage inevitably exposes their lost innocence, lending poignancy to this last chapter of one of history’s most enduring love stories.

    In Beautiful Fools, R. Clifton Spargo gives us a vivid, resplendent, and truly human portrait of the Fitzgeralds, and reveals the heartbreaking patterns and unexpected moments of tenderness that characterize a great romance in decline.

    “Here is a writer possessing the greatest talent: that of fully inhabiting the lives of others. Spargo conjures up these two as no one has done before. Scott and Zelda become, in Spargo’s remarkable novel, not people of history but of literature, and reminders of what we fight for, what we fail to win, and the beauty that abides between. A marvel of a book.”

    —Andrew Sean Greer, author of The Story of a Marriage