The Adventures of Henry Thoreau: A Young Man's Unlikely Path to Walden Pond
From Mahatma Gandhi and John F. Kennedy to Martin Luther King and Leo Tolstoy, the works of Henry David Thoreau - author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, surveyor, schoolteacher, engineer - have long been an inspiration to many. But who was the unsophisticated young man who in 1837 became a prot g of Ralph Waldo Emerson? The Adventures of Henry Thoreau tells the colourful story of a complex man seeking a meaningful life in a tempestuous era. In rich, evocative prose Michael Sims brings to life the insecure, youthful Henry, as he embarks on the path to becoming the literary icon Thoreau. Using the letters and diaries of Thoreau's family, friends and students, Michael Sims charts his coming of age within a family struggling to rise above poverty in 1830s America. From skating and boating with Nathaniel Hawthorne, to travels with his brother, John Thoreau, and the launching of their progressive school, Sims paints a vivid portrait of the young writer struggling to find his voice through communing with nature, whether mountain climbing in Maine or building his life-changing cabin at Walden Pond. He explores Thoreau's infatuation with the beautiful young woman who rejected his proposal of marriage, the influence of his mother and sisters - who were passionate abolitionists - and that of the powerful cultural currents of the day. With emotion and texture, The Adventures of Henry Thoreau sheds fresh light on one of the most iconic figures in American history.
The Adventures of Henry Thoreau sheds illuminating light on one of the most iconic figures in American history
Michael Sims is the author of acclaimed non-fiction titles The Story of Charlotte's Web, Apollo's Fire: A Day on Earth in Nature and Imagination and Adam's Navel: A Natural and Cultural History of the Human Form, as well as the editor of numerous anthologies, including his own Connoisseur's Collection series for Bloomsbury, which includes Dracula's Guest (vampire stories), The Dead Witness (detective stories) and the upcoming The Phantom Coach (ghost stories). Michael Sims lives in western Pennsylvania with his wife and son.