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4.6 out of 5 stars
31
4.6 out of 5 stars
The Miracle Life Of Edgar Mint
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on 21 March 2017
Loved it. Read it for a book club that I am in. Wouldn't have chosen it, glad someone else did!
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on 19 July 2002
This book ended up being a really good buy. Completely taken in by the cover's claim that the book was something a "modern Charles Dickens" would have written I couldn't put it down.
All the characters are brilliant and very believable. I think I've met with all the old men at the hospital in the book! You immediately feel for Edgar and get really drawn into all that he goes through, hilarious in some parts (especially when he gets his first "encounter" with a female!) and very touching in others. I thoroughly recommend this book!
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on 3 May 2003
I feel that this book has all the ingredients of a perfect read. Edgar's life is tragic, bizarre, hear-warming, heart-wrenching and comical.
The best example of innocent Edgar's appeal is when he is about to be baptised by the Mormons and is asked if he has ever indulged in self abuse. He replies, 'I hit myself over the head with a brick once.' Anyway, read it!
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on 13 August 2001
Brady Udall has followed up his fine collection of short stories, ' Letting Loose the Hounds', with an intense and gripping debut novel which, for better or for worse, has gained comparisons to John Irving's excellent novel, 'A Prayer for Owen Meany '. The story of Edgar Mint begins with a horrific accident befalling him. After a miraculous recovery and spell in a hospital the boy is left as a ward of the State and ends up in an Apache orphanage where survival leads to a life of petty crime and finally escape through the charity of a Mormon family. From there the story unfolds at a steady pace revealing a path to the future from a search of the threads of the past. Like Irving's book, ' The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint ' slowly but surely draws the reader into a welcoming yet surreal world. It is one of those rare books to transport you into a life which you regret having to leave at the end. Anyone who has read Udall's earlier work will not be surprised by the strength and imagination of the writing. Hopefully it will not be long before this author's next book.
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on 27 August 2004
I picked this book up in the local library as the title appealed and read it in one sitting. Edgar's story is inspirational from his inauspicious birth to his accidental 'death' and rebirth on the mortuary slab aged 8 through to the final fulfilling of his destiny. Edgar is a survivor and a natural born narrator, recording the trials of being born an outsider and made to stand alone by circumstance. This book is of the 'laugh out loud' variety as well as being an insight into the unusual characters and circumstances in Edgars life while he struggles to understand what it is he is on earth to do. The final chapter will also make you cry!
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 31 March 2009
I loved this book. Quirky doesn't quite do it justice - whilst it is quite dark and surreal in places, it's also very funny and heart-warming.

As the blurb says, the book follows Edgar's journey to find the mailman who ran over his head so that he can reassure him that he's still alive. Along the way the wonderful cast of bullies, cranks and oddballs he comes into contact with makes it laugh-out-loud funny at times, and the cynical, slightly detached tone of Edgar's narration (sometimes slipping into the third person to tell his own story) stops it becoming schmaltzy That said, the ending is very touching as you're really gunning for our hero after everything he's been through and throughout the whole book there's a real sense of hope triumphing over adversity.

Interesting fact about Brady Udall - he grew up as part of a large Mormon family so presumably drew on some of his own experiences when researching parts of the book. Edgar Mint was published in 2001 and I can't find any trace of him releasing anything since then, more's the pity. In one interview he mentions working on a book about a Mormon polygamist with four wives and 28 children, and I really hope I get to read it one day.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 11 September 2011
Edgar Mint is seven years old when the mailman's Jeep accidentally runs over his head, he is thought dead. But half-Apache Edgar, is taken to hospital where young Dr Barry Pinkley does not give up on him. When he later comes out of his coma he remembers nothing of his life (other fill it in for him), alone in the world he is happy living in the hospital until time for his discharge. Then packed off to a school for American Indian children his real troubles begin, but things look better when a Mormon family foster him; yet he never feels at home, and his one desire throughout is to find the mailman to tell him he is alive.

Edgar tells his own story as written over the years on the trusty old typewriter given him by a Ray, a fellow hospital patient - one of the results of his accident is that he cannot get his hands to write. He takes us through the eight or nine years since his accident: his time happy time in hospital, the horrendous years in school where he suffers constant bullying and some pretty disgusting indignities, better times with the Mormon family, and then the end of this search for the mailman and 'home'; finally he proves a brief account of his life since finding 'home'.

Edgar is an incredible character, not just as the miracle child who seems to survive any number of strange or life threatening disasters, but he his thoroughly appealing, one can forgive whatever he does (and he does some pretty worse than naughty things!), yet he remains an innocent and is basically a good kid. Along the way he meets some colourful characters; including Barry his life saving doctor who pursues him throughout, and Ray who proves to be a true guardian even in his absence. Little Cecil, equally bullied and whom he befriends at school, and the two very different children of the Mormon family are among the better children he meets.

The Miracle Life of Edgar Mint is an most endearing story, by turns funny and moving, but always beautifully related. Edgar Mint will surely prove one of the most memorable and likeable of fictional characters.
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on 3 December 2012
This book gripped me from the start. Edgar and what happened to him as he grew up was unbelievable I kept thinking what else can possibly happen next. He had such difficulties throughout his childhood and the fates were certainly against him. His thinking processes were kind of logical and the people he met growing up were challenging to say the least. Every teenager who thinks they have it rough should read this book and then will know what a tough life is with bad luck thrown in,
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on 13 February 2003
This is one of the most fabulous, heart tugging stories ever! Easy to read, it's something you can pick up anytime, anywhere and be totally drawn into. It follows the life of Edgar from the age of 7 when the mailman runs over his head, through his time in hospital, then an Apache school and finally a Mormon foster home.
Written mostly in the first person, Edgar is so naive and innocent as a child, but becomes more suspicious of human nature as he gets older and endures so much heartbreak and humiliation. You cannot fail to fall in love with the little half caste boy.
The characters are fascinating, real, sometimes funny, sometimes cruel and the plot is full of twists and events which all effect Edgar and his journey to reach the man who ran over his head.
Read this if you want something totally unique and an insight into human nature at its best and worst.
See the world through Edgar's bashed up head and you'll never get him our of yours.
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on 27 June 2010
Brady Udall has produced a modern masterpiece in Miracle of Edgar Mint. This would not be out of place in an English Literature Course, such is its rich description of place, character and feeling.

The first person style is always a winner, and this weaves in and out with third person in a unique way. All of the quirky characters come alive along with their accents and eccentricities. In essence, this book charts the coming of age of a boy dealt a cruel hand in life; There are some shocking events depicted especially during his time in a tough reform school for disadvantaged Indian children.

What disappointed me however, was the ending. I felt that it was insipid and formulaic; there was no real bang in the end that such a story, with its outrageous earlier antics would have warranted.

In a sentence - one of the best books I have read, and pleased to have picked it off the shelf in my library.
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