Chicago Tribune

Yuval Taylor: On the road with 'Zora and Langston'

For Langston Hughes, his falling out with Zora Neale Hurston marked the "end of the Harlem Renaissance." Henry Louis Gates Jr. deemed it "the most notorious literary quarrel in African American cultural history." Alice Walker, who deemed the pair "literary parents," wrote, "When I consider the ending of their friendship, I am filled with sadness for them."

In his new book, "Zora and Langston," Yuval Taylor traces the exhilarating intellectual and emotional connection between the two beloved authors, unspooling the story of a six-year friendship that ended in a searing conflict sparked by the play "Mule Bone."

The book opens with a literal thunderclap as lightning strikes the New York Botanical Gardens, shattering the building's glass dome. The date is May 1, 1925, and later that evening, Hurston

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