Fante, John (1909–1983) By Ardoin, Paul
American author John Fante (8 April 1909–8 May 1983) is best known for his Arturo Bandini novels, including The Road to Los Angeles (written 1933, published 1985), Wait Until Spring, Bandini (1938), Dreams from Bunker Hill (published 1982), and in particular Ask the Dust (1939). While his interwar novels and short stories were met with critical acclaim, he found far more financial success working in the film industry, where he wrote scripts for figures such as Orson Welles while socializing with other contract writers such as William Faulkner. His highly autobiographical fiction frequently showed the influence of, and made reference to, figures like Friedrich Nietzsche and H. L. Mencken. His work dealt largely with the experiences of working-class Americans of Italian descent and their interactions with other marginalized groups.