Born in Cardross, Scotland, AJ Cronin studied at the University of Glasgow. In 1917 he served as a surgeon sub-lieutenant in the Royal Navy Volunteers Reserve, and at the war's end he completed his medical studies and practiced in South Wales. He was later appointed to the Ministry of Mines, studying the medical problems of the mining industry. He later moved to London and built up a successful practice in the West End. In 1931 he published his first book, Hatter's Castle, which was compared with the work of Dickens, Hardy and Balzac, winning him critical acclaim. Other books by AJ Cronin include: The Citadel, Three Loves, The Green Years, Beyond This Place, The Keys of the Kingdom
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