Peculiar People: The Story of My Life

Augustus John Cuthbert Hare, Author, Anita Miller, Editor, James Papp, Editor Academy Chicago Publishers $26.95 (350p) ISBN 978-0-89733-388-7
This engrossing, one-volume autobiography of Victorian writer Augustus John Cuthbert Hare (1834-1903) has been edited by Miller, publisher of Academy Chicago, and Papp, a freelance writer, to retain the distinctive flavor of the original six-volume edition, published from 1896 to 1900. Hare dramatically recounts a childhood so horrible, it is amazing he survived. As an infant he was given away by his upper-class English parents to his Aunt Maria, who placed him for much of his early years in the care of an Uncle Julius and Aunt Esther, who starved and beat him. He finally escaped by attending Oxford and then, as a young man, traveled with and cared for Maria until her death. She repaid him by depriving him of his fortune. Until he reclaimed his estate, he made a living by writing travel guides. A born storyteller, Hare vividly describes his travels and the unusual people he met as well as shares his favorite supernatural tales. Illustrations. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/2005
Release date: 08/01/2005
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