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Peter Prescott, 68; Award-Winning Book Critic and Author

PASSINGS

April 26, 2004|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Peter Prescott, 68, an award-winning book critic and author, died Friday in New York of liver disease complicated by diabetes.

Prescott, who won the George Polk Award for criticism in 1978, worked for nine years as an editor at E.P. Dutton before he turned to reviewing books for Women's Wear Daily, Look and, for 20 years, Newsweek.

He was born in Manhattan, where his father was daily book critic for the New York Times from 1942 to 1966. Educated at Choate, Harvard and the Sorbonne, Prescott wrote a memoir of his freshman year at Harvard and a book based on his years at Choate, "A World of Our Own: Notes on Life and Learning in a Boys' Preparatory School."

Prescott also published two collections of critical essays and a well-received book about family court, "The Child Savers: Juvenile Justice Observed."

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