THE FREEST MAN ON EARTH by James Whitfield Ellison

THE FREEST MAN ON EARTH

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The earlier I'm Owen Harrison Harding (1955) was a hardcrust-tender-inside picture of an insecure boy; this again invades the areas of insecurity but pervades them with a protest against a family and a system organized against freedom. Winston Boswell, inheriting wealth, in World War I, had flouted the draft from his own country and abroad and returned to accept his jail sentence and turn rabid patriot. The mark of wealth, of their father's and mother's determined channelings drive Roger to rebellion, Tony to outward acquiescence with inward distrust, and Augusta to meddlesome sympathy with each of her brothers. Roger has avoided the draft deliberately for four years; Tony is about to accede now to it, after two years' deferment, has a job of promise and a finance socially and financially eminent. When the FBI gets close to Roger, Tony is ready with cash for Roger to disappear in return for Roger's share as an heir in the family fortune. But Roger is caught; Tony's world can end only in suicide after he reads Roger's diarion -- and Roger is sent to the prison that jailed his father. "".....never blindly to follow"". This is an angry young man in wilful pursuit of a desperate decision rendered, again, with understanding, some moments of humor and some persuasiveness, although the attitude may not find a response with all ages.

Publisher: Doubleday