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“wish we were not so terribly poor, Grant," said Mrs. Thornton, in a discouraged tone. "Is there anything new that makes you say so, mother?” Horatio Alger, Jr. (January 13, 1832 – July 18, 1899) was a prolific 19th-century American author, most famous for his novels following the adventures of bootblacks, newsboys, peddlers, buskers, and other impoverished children in their rise from humble backgrounds to lives of respectable middle-class security and comfort. His novels about boys who succeed under the tutelage of older mentors were hugely popular in their day. This book, a true rags-to-riches novel, follows Grant, the oldest of three children that their mother, a widow is struggling to feed and clothe. His determination to succeed is fierce and yet he never cheats or follows the easy path to success.