Thomas Wolfe's novella The Lost Boy is a captivating and poignant retelling of an episode from Wolfe's childhood.
For this special, illustrated edition, James Clark unearthed Wolfe's original manuscript for the story, which was first published in Redbook in a heavily abridged form. This edition marks the first appearance of the original novella as Wolfe wrote it and its first publication as a book. Told from four perspectives, each articulating the sentiments of a different family member, the story captures beautifully the experiences of growing up in a mountain town in North Carolina at the turn of the century and the exhilaration of traveling by train to the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. It also evokes in a timeless manner the tragedy of a family losing a young and promising child. Wolfe is best known for his long, often poetic autobiographical novels. However, many critics have maintained that Wolfe's experiments with the novella form often resulted in the creation of his greatest work, and The Lost Boy is a splendid example of that view.