HALF A HIGHLANDER by Iain Hamilton


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This somewhat ineptly titled book by a Scotsman now living in England, a soldier, journalist and publisher, would appear to be the first volume of a more extensive autobiography. Born in 1920 in Renfrewshire, Scotland, the son of a middle class family, the author grew up in comfortable but far from ornate surroundings in Renferry, a Clydeside suburb of Glangow, with his grandfather as his closest friend and companion; at school he was terrorized by gangs of slum boys and survived, as he survived his older romantic dreams of a Scotland he did not know. With friends he explored the country from the Clyde and Glangow to the Trossache and the fringe of the true Highlands, encountering Young Communists and Scottish Nationalists and succumbing only partially to their giddy theories, dreaming always of Scotland. The book ends with the beginning of his 17th year and his realization that to his he did not know the world at all. Well written but with a style too heavy for its slight theme the book gives a good picture of a boy's life in a Scottish industrial town of 30 years ago, but its appeal to American readers is doubtful, for neither the background nor the story is of outstanding or unusual interest -- except perhaps to Scotsmen.

Pub Date: May 26th, 1958
Publisher: Dutton