Amanda Vaill


the author of Hotel Florida: Truth, Love and Death in the Spanish Civil War, a work of narrative historical nonfiction about a group of 1930’s combat journalists; Somewhere: The Life of Jerome Robbins, for which she received a Guggenheim Fellowship; and the bestselling Everybody Was So Young: Gerald and Sara Murphy – A Lost Generation Love Story, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics’ Circle Award in biography. In addition she is a co-author of Seaman Schepps: A Century of New York Jewelry Design, an illustrated study of the work of her designer grandfather, and has edited or contributed to a number of other books, most recently The Beatles Are Here!, an anthology of reminiscences about the eponymous band’s first visit to the United States fifty years ago. She was also the writer of the screenplay for the PBS/American Masters documentary, Jerome Robbins: Something to Dance About, which won both an Emmy and a Peabody Award.

Amanda was educated at Harvard University and spent a number of years in book publishing before becoming a full-time writer in 1992. Her journalism and criticism have appeared in such publications as The American Scholar, Architectural Digest, ArtNews, Ballet Review, Esquire, New York Magazine, Town & Country, and The Washington Post.  She lives in New York City.

Author photograph by Xanthe Elbrick Photography


is a biographer, journalist, and screenwriter:

Amanda has been named a Resident Fellow of NYU’s Center for Ballet and the Arts for spring 2017, during which time she’ll be completing work on a volume of the selected letters, journals, and other writings of Jerome Robbins, to be published in conjunction with his centenary in 2018

Amanda has just signed the contract for her next book, The Schuyler Sisters, a dual biography of Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, staunchly loyal wife of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton and a notable philanthropist and social activist in her own right, and her sister Angelica Schuyler Church, international political flirt and muse (or more) to her famous brother-in-law. The sisters are already getting a lot of exposure thanks to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ground-breaking musical, Hamilton; listen here.

In Bloomberg News, Secretary of State John Kerry puts Hotel Florida in his list of 5 best books of the year: “just a great read. A messy, complicated period, a story about shades of grey, idealism, guts and grit in the middle of a war.”

Hotel Florida is one of the New York Times Book Review’s 100 Notable Books of 2014 and a Spectator (UK) Book of the Year

In the Wall Street Journal, Brenda Wineapple picks Hotel Florida as one of 5 biographies to give for the holidays: “an exuberant group biography [whose] real value lies in Ms. Vaill’s cogent explanation of... very complex political motivations....”

To inquire about publishing or film rights to Amanda’s work, contact Eric Simonoff at

Send Amanda an email

To view Amanda’s author page – where you can ask her questions – on Goodreads, click here

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Twitter @amandavaill


Instagram @mizvaill