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Bill Hope: His Story by Clifford Browder
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Bill Hope: His Story

by Clifford Browder

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Grammar Nazis beware!! This book will drive you nuts! For the rest of you, you get used to the rhythm of the run-on sentences. Not all of the book is like that as the good Mrs. Hawkins will help to correct his grammar to some degree throughout.

The book opens with Bill Hope in jail writing down the tail of his life starting with the first time he got arrested. He tried to pick the pocket of a great detective who came and visited him in jail. He told him that he would drop the charges if Bill would come and see him after he was released. He took Bill's prized onyx ring to ensure that he would come. When Bill came the man, Mr. Minick, asked him to do a job for him in return for dropping the charges. A notorious pickpocket prince's girl friend who has a habit of shoplifting and taking things from the dearly departed and mourners at funerals. She took a one-of-a-kind stick pin from someone who wants it back. Mr. Minick would like Bill to lift it off of her without her knowing it. Bill succeeds in this and Mr. Minick offers him work as one of his street informants, or as Bill calls them the League of Snitches. He won't have anything to do with it, but the two part on good terms.

Bill finds a rather expensive, yet highly unusual Tiffany ring. He goes to the local dealer and finds out how much he could get for it, but decides not to sell it. Soon he sees in the paper that someone is looking for it. He meets with a person to give the ring back and finds out that the ring belongs to someone new and big in town and instead of taking the money now he tells him that he'd rather have him owe him. This will prove to be a smart move later on when he gets into trouble and needs bailing out. He winds up working for the ring's owner, Mr. Vail then embarks on a dangerous adventure.

This book is a really good yarn of a story. Bill Hope is a sweet rascal of a character who doesn't give up on people once he's invested in them. He's an honorable thief who never steals from women or kids just rich men. He is always trying to improve himself by working on his speech to make himself sound better and buying clothes to make him look smart. Trouble still manages to always find Bill, though and it's great fun to read about how he gets out of it. I can't recommend this book enough.

Quotes
But sometimes the truth just isn’t enough and we’ve got to believe in lies or at least what might be lies. Dan says the game of hope is lie after lie and he sees just about everyone as liars who want to make folks hope for better even though it’s a sham and a hoax and maybe he’s right but without hope we’d all be in a funk for life.
-Clifford Browder (Bill Hope: His Story p 125)
The game of hope is lie after lie.
-Clifford Browder (Bill Hope: His Story p 120)

Truth is sterile; lies are rich and juicy. Truth is jagged; lies are smooth and sweet. Truth hurts; lies soothe and console. The world is built on lies and better for it. Politics is all about lies, expedient lies. Religion is based on lies, beautiful lies. Thank God for lies, they make life livable. But you must know when to lie, how much, and to whom. You must tell people what they want and need to know.
-Clifford Browder (Bill Hope: His Story p 75) ( )
  nicolewbrown | Jul 26, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
In the late 1800's Bill Hope, a young man, in New York. He gets involved in con-games, and the story unravels seamlessly. A good read, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
I received a complimentary copy through the Early Reviewers Program. ( )
  AmberTew | Jul 25, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
What a story! A little New York trickster in the 1870s gets arrested for pickpocketing but finds himself freed a few days later. A mysterious man bailed him out. And so a mysterious story unravels where Bill Hope uses his brain and gets involved in ludicrous con games.

Sure, our little grafter tries hard to find his way into legal straits. But not before testing before a Senate Committee, a visit to the asylum house and lot of other dubious adventures. And - well, it's intricate. Read yourself!

Despite the story is told in a sort of flash language it's an easy read - and very enjoyable! ( )
  viennamax | Apr 25, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This was a fun book. The main character seemed like a cross between Huck Finn and a Charles Dickens' character. It is set in the late 1800's and involves the main character, Bill Hope, who was a street wise young man who had made his way by stealing items from people on the street until he met up with men involved in con games . However, Bill Hope was a likeable character who had his own principles and who actually testified before Congress about the graft going on during that time and refused to get others in trouble. The story revolved around his various adventures while painting a picture of what New York City was like in the late 1800s. A very enjoyable book. I would recommend this. ( )
  stephvin | Apr 16, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Engrossing novel that makes you want to continue reading in order to find out what happens next in the life of Bill Hope. Many ups and downs make it a truely enjoyable read, about a bygone time. ( )
  terry19802 | Apr 7, 2017 |
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