David Halberstam biography

Author Biography  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

David Halberstam
Photo by Porter Gifford

David Halberstam

How to pronounce David Halberstam: dayvid HAL-buhr-STAM

David Halberstam Biography

David Halberstam was one of America's most distinguished journalists and historians, a man whose newspaper reporting and books helped define the era we live in. He graduated from Harvard in 1955, took his first job on the smallest daily in Mississippi, and then covered the early civil rights struggle for the Nashville Tennessean. He joined The New York Times in 1960, went overseas almost immediately, first to the Congo and then to Vietnam. His early pessimistic dispatches from Vietnam won him the Pulitzer in 1964 at the age of thirty. Many of his books, including The Best and the Brightest, The Powers That Be, The Reckoning, and The Fifties, have been national bestsellers.

Over the years, he developed a pattern of alternating a book with a weighty theme with one that might seem of slighter import but to which he nonetheless applied his considerable reportorial muscles. “He was a man who didn’t have a lazy bone in his body,” said the writer Gay Talese, a close family friend. Almost invariably, Mr. Halberstam wrote about sports in those alternate books. “They were his entertainments,” his wife said. “They were his way to take a break.”

He was born on April 10, 1934 in New York City.  His father, Dr Charles A Halberstam, was an Army surgeon; his mother, Blanche Levy Halberstam, a schoolteacher. 

After Vietnam and after winning his Pulitzer Prize, Mr. Halberstam was assigned to the Times bureau in Warsaw. There, he met an actress, Elzbieta Czyzewska, whom he married in 1965, but the marriage was short-lived. In 1979, he married Jean Sandness, then a writer. 

He died in a car crash south of San Francisco on April 23, 2007.  The car that he was a passenger in was hit broadside by another car and knocked into a third vehicle.  Mr Halberstam, who lived in Manhattan, was on his way to interview Y.A. Tittle, the former New York Giants quarterback, for a book about the 1958 championship game between the Giants and the Baltimore Colts.

He is survived by his wife and daughter, Julia, who both live in Manhattan.



This bio was last updated on 04/24/2007. We try to keep BookBrowse's biographies both up to date and accurate, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's a tough task. So, please help us - if the information about this author is out of date or inaccurate, and you know of a more complete source, please let us know. Authors and publishers: If you wish to make changes to a bio, send the complete biography as you would like it displayed so that we can replace the old with the new.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Books by this Author

Books by David Halberstam at BookBrowse
The Coldest Winter jacket War In A Time Of Peace jacket Playing For Keeps jacket
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for David Halberstam but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Richard Ben Cramer

    Richard Ben Cramer

    Richard Ben Cramer was born June 12, 1950 in Rochester, New York. He attended Johns Hopkins University earning a bachelor's degree in the Liberal Arts, later going on to earn a masters degree at Columbia University. His ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    Playing For Keeps

    Try:
    Joe DiMaggio
    by Richard Ben Cramer

  • Niall Ferguson

    Niall Ferguson

    Niall Ferguson, MA, D.Phil., is Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University. He is also a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and a Senior Research Fellow at Jesus College, Oxford.

    ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    War In A Time Of Peace

    Try:
    Colossus
    by Niall Ferguson

We recommend 7 similar authors

View all 7 Readalikes

Non-members can see 2 results. Become a member
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Heavens
    The Heavens
    by Sandra Newman
    I've been a big fan of Sandra Newman's writing ever since reading her 2014 novel The Country of Ice ...
  • Book Jacket: Sugar Run
    Sugar Run
    by Mesha Maren
    Mesha Maren's debut novel is a plunge into the depths of the dark Southern gothic with pulsing and ...
  • Book Jacket: Code Name Lise
    Code Name Lise
    by Larry Loftis
    Odette Sansom (1912 – 1995), a Frenchwoman married to a British man and living in the English ...
  • Book Jacket: Watch Us Rise
    Watch Us Rise
    by Renee Watson, Ellen Hagen
    Jasmine and Chelsea are about to enter their junior year at New York City's progressive Amsterdam ...

Book Club
Book Jacket
The Accidental Further Adventures of the Hundred-Year-Old Man
by Jonas Jonasson

The hysterical, clever, and unforgettable sequel to Jonas Jonasson's international bestseller.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    American Princess
    by Stephanie Marie Thornton

    Rated 4.9 stars by BookBrowse members - one of the highest scores of all time!
    Reader Reviews

Book Club Giveaway!
Win The Summer Country

Win up to 12 copies to share with friends or your book club!

A sweeping epic of lost love, lies, jealousy, and rebellion set in colonial Barbados.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

C I Next T G

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.