The Book

In the Frightened Heart of Me

Author Tony Narducci fell in love with Tennessee Williams’ poetry when he was 14 years old. For Narducci, Williams was a genius who redefined theater in America, the greatest living playwright, and perhaps one of the greatest artists of the twentieth century. So when 33-year-old Narducci met Williams at a Key West bar in February of 1982, the encounter was more than coincidence. It was destiny.

In the Frightened Heart of Me, Narducci narrates the story of how after meeting Williams he was drawn deep into the playwright’s life and work—a journey that would change Narducci’s life in every way. This biography shares how Narducci and William’s time together was an odyssey of adventure, emotional entanglement, and insight. 

While providing a glimpse into the Key West of the early 1980s, this book blends the events and sorrows of Williams’ last years on earth. It tells how 1983 was the year Narducci evolved from a floundering young wannabe artist to a focused business entrepreneur.

It was the year he watched his literary hero, a titan of literature, become a frightened, dying old man—and the year AIDS took the lives of many of his loved ones. It was the year that defined his life.