Warren Adler

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Warren Adler
Born December 16, 1927 (1927-12-16) (age 88)
Brooklyn, New York
Occupation Author
Nationality American
Education New York University, The New School
Genre Fiction, Poetry, Essays
Subject Writing
Notable works The War of the Roses, Random Hearts, The Sunset Gang
Spouse Sonia Adler
Children Michael Adler, Jonathan Adler, David Adler

Warren Adler (born December 16, 1927) is an American author who has written forty books, 12 of which he went on to sell the movie and film rights to. He is best known for The War of the Roses novel, the fictionalization of a macabre divorce. This dark comedy was soon turned into a movie starring Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner, and Danny DeVito. An essayist, short-story writer, poet and playwright, Adler’s works have been translated into 25 languages. Adler currently has 3 films and 1 television series in development.

Education and early career[edit]

Adler, a graduate of Brooklyn Technical High School and New York University, majored in English literature. He then went on to study creative writing. In 2009, Adler was the recipient of the “Alumni of the Year” honor at NYU’s College of Arts and Science. After graduation, Adler worked at the New York Daily News, before becoming editor of the Queens Post.

During the Korean War, Adler was recruited by Armed Forces Press Service to serve in the Pentagon as the only Washington Correspondent for the service. His Washington byline went all over the world and was published in every publication put out by the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard.

Warren Adler has owned four radio stations and a TV station, while running his own advertising and public relations agency in Washington, D.C. Adler is one of the founders of the Washington Dossier magazine. He is also the founder of the Jackson Hole Writer’s Conference, WY, and has been Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Jackson Hole Public Library.

He currently lives in New York City with his wife, Sonia Adler née Kline, a former magazine editor.

Writing career[edit]

Adler’s themes deal primarily with intimate human relationships—the mysterious nature of love and attraction, the fragile relationships between husbands and wive, parents and children, the corrupting power of money, the aging process, and how families cling together when challenged by the outside world.

In 1974, Adler’s third novel, Options, was published by Whitman Publishing. He later published The War of the Roses, and Random Hearts. The War of the Roses has been adapted into a feature film starring Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner, and Danny DeVito in 1989, and the Broadway rights for a stage adaptation were sold in Spring 2014. Random Hearts was adapted into a film starring Harrison Ford and Kristin Scott Thomas in 1999. There was an unprecedented bidding war in a Hollywood commission for his unpublished book Private Lies. Newsweek reported, “TriStar Pictures outbid Warner Bros and Columbia, and purchased the film rights to Private Lies for $1.2 million. …the highest sums yet paid in Hollywood for an unpublished manuscript."

Adler also wrote The Sunset Gang, produced by Linda Lavin for PBS’ American Playhouse series. It was adapted into a trilogy starring Uta Hagen, Harold Gould, Dori Brenner, Jerry Stiller and Ron Rifkin garnering Doris Roberts an Emmy nomination for ‘Best Supporting Actress in a Mini-Series’. The musical version of The Sunset Gang received an Off-Broadway production with music scored by noted composer L. Russell Brown.

The Broadway rights to the stage adaptation of The War of the Roses were sold this spring, while the dramatic version continues to be produced internationally, reaching a global audience in Italy, Germany, Denmark, Hungary, Prague, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Mexico, Uruguay, and elsewhere.

In 1981, Adler authored a sequel to The War of the Roses called The Children of the Roses. The follow-up focuses on the aftermath of the events in The War of the Roses, and the effect the Roses' divorce had on their children. In 2013, the novel was re-issued as The War of the Roses - The Children.

Adler’s New York Echoes has also been released as an audio book with Emmy Award winning actress Cynthia Nixon narrating this collection of short stories.

E-Book pioneer[edit]

From its conception, Adler was involved in electronic publishing. In the early 2000s, Adler predicted the decline of printed books and he envisioned digital publishing becoming the norm. He acquired his complete back-list and converted this library to a digital publishing format, published now under his own company, Stonehouse Press. He based this action on the hope that his books would never go out of print; they would last beyond his lifetime and would be a legacy of his life’s work. Adler wrote an article for the The Author’s Guild stating that authors had best prepare for a major change in the way traditional publishing businesses operated. He argued that traditional publishers no longer had a monopoly on marketing, distribution, publicity, and content and stated prolific authors like himself should take charge of their own destiny since traditional publishers would slowly fade as the principle conduit from authors to readership.[1] In 2011, he released five new e-books in an exclusive with Amazon.

Adler himself regularly blogs for The Huffington Post, and lectures on creative writing, motion picture adaptation, and the future of e-books.

The Warren Adler short story contest[edit]

In 2006, Adler initiated "The Warren Adler Short Story Contest." The first anthology of contest winners was printed in 2010.[citation needed] Adler is the sponsor of a visiting writer series at the New York university department of creative writing.[2]


Adler’s own select television appearances include ABC, The Today Show, Connie Martinson, Good Morning America, and Geraldo Rivera.

Fiona Fitzgerald Series[edit]

Fiona Fitzgerald mystery series revolves around Fiona Fitzgerald, a woman in her 30’s who was born into the illustrious family of a New York senator but chose to break away and become a homicide detective. When asked why she did this, Fiona merely answers, “Because I could.”

Throughout her childhood, Fiona enjoyed all of the privileges her late father spoiled her with, most importantly her status as a Washington D.C. resident and her political access: during her pre-detective life she established a wide network of all the in-the-know D.C. political elites. These connections, alongside her intuition and expertise as a detective, allows her to deftly maneuver between the political and crime worlds in Washington D.C.—a unique skillset that has cemented her as the top detective to assign the most high profile and politically sensitive homicide cases.

Fiona is unable to leave her heritage behind, especially when it comes to her love life. In each new mystery she becomes involved with a new lover or boyfriend, all of which are influential and powerful men. In Senator Love, for example, Fiona is seduced by Senator Sam Langford, and in Washington Masquerade she is in a relationship with Larry Porter, Editor in Chief at the Washington Post.

American Quartet is the first book, and it was not originally planned as a series until the New York Times listed the novel on its list of “Notable Crime Fiction” in December 1982, and calling it "high-class suspense." Following American Quartet, Fiona embarks on a long journey of harrowing cases throughout seven other books. American Sextet deals with a sex scandal involving six of the most important individuals in Washington D.C. Immaculate Deception deals with a congresswoman who is a pro-life supporter—she is not only found dead, but pregnant. The Witch of Watergate focuses on the death of a gossip columnist, who is discovered hanging from a balcony in the Watergate apartment complex. Senator Love is about a womanizing senator whose lover is found murdered. The Ties That Bind focuses on a sado-masochistic killing in a Washington D.C. hotel. The Death of a Washington Madame is about the murder of one of Washington D.C.’s most important hostesses. And in Washington Masquerade, the latest novel in the series, Fiona unravels the death of a prominent Washington Post political columnist and fierce critic of the current Administration.

The Fiona Fitzgerald novels are currently in development to be adapted for a television series.



  • The War of the Roses
  • The War of the Roses - The Children
  • The Sunset Gang
  • The David Embrace
  • Flanagan's Dolls
  • The Womanizer
  • Residue
  • Empty Treasures
  • Random Hearts
  • Funny Boys
  • Trans-Siberian Express
  • Mourning Glory
  • Cult
  • The Casanova Embrace
  • Blood Ties
  • Natural Enemies
  • Banquet Before Dawn
  • The Housewife Blues
  • Madeline's Miracles
  • We Are Holding the President Hostage
  • Private Lies
  • Twilight Child
  • The Henderson Equation
  • Undertow
  • The Serpent's Bite
  • Treadmill

Short stories[edit]

The Fiona Fitzgerald Mysteries[edit]

  • American Quartet
  • American Sextet
  • Death of a Washington Madame
  • The Witch of Watergate
  • Senator Love
  • Immaculate Deception
  • The Ties That Bind


External links[edit]