A bestseller with more than 5 million copies in print, The Fountainhead is readily available in bookstores, and school and local libraries. The novel is about architect Howard Roark, a man denounced by society for his unconventional style and creative ability. Roark is an innovator who battles to uphold his values and principles—both in architecture and in morality—against those who want to destroy him and his work. Roark has to face not merely professional opposition, but also the enmity of Ellsworth Toohey, art critic; of Gail Wynand, powerful publisher; and of Dominique Francon, the beautiful columnist who loves him fervently yet, for reasons you’ll discover, is bent on destroying his career. The novel dramatically illustrates the role of independence and integrity in man’s life. After being rejected by thirteen publishers, The Fountainhead was published in 1943 by Bobbs-Merrill. The novel made publishing history by becoming a best seller within two years purely through word of mouth.
The Fountainhead was made into a motion picture in 1949, starring Gary Cooper and Patricia Neal, for which Ayn Rand wrote the screenplay. The movie, available on video, often plays on cable TV and at art-house cinemas.
The Fountainhead has been in print for more than fifty years, and continues to sell more than 100,000 copies every year. It has found its way onto summer reading lists and is taught in high school and college classrooms throughout the world.
Ayn Rand wrote in her introduction to The Fountainhead, “Whatever their future, at the dawn of their lives, men seek a noble vision of man’s nature and of life’s potential. There are very few guideposts to find. The Fountainhead is one of them. This is one of the cardinal reasons of The Fountainhead’s lasting appeal: it is a confirmation of the spirit of youth, proclaiming man’s glory, showing how much is possible.”