"[The author] mixes extraordinary, marginal voices with famous - and infamous - figures, from messiahs like James Jezreel and Octavia 'Daughter of God'; writers such as Oscar Wilde, Arthur Conan Doyle and Edward Bulwer-Lytton; revolutionaries and radicals like Karl Marx, Beatrice Webb, George Bernard Shaw and Oswald Mosley; madmen like Richard Dadd and Jack the Ripper; worshippers of Pan such as Arthur Machen, Kenneth Grahame and J.M. Barrie; orientalists and guerrilla fighters like T.E. Lawrence and occultists like Aleister Crowley, to the Latvian anarchists who killed three policemen in the East End of London. This is the story of those who were outcasts by temperament and choice: the non-conformists of the age."--Book jacket.