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Mr American (Flashman Papers) [Paperback]

George MacDonald Fraser
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
RRP: £9.99
Price: £6.89 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Book Description

1 Sep 2008 Flashman Papers

Repackaged to tie-in with hardback publication of ‘The Reavers’ and to appeal to a new generation of George MacDonald Fraser fans, ‘Mr American’ is a swashbuckling romp of a novel.

Mark Franklin came from the American West to Edwardian England with two long-barrelled .44s in his baggage and a fortune in silver in the bank. Where he had got it and what he was looking for no one could guess, although they wondered – at Scotland Yard, in City offices, in the glittering theatreland of the West End, in the highest circles of Society (even King Edward was puzzled) and in the humble pub at Castle Lancing. Tall dark and dangerous, soft spoken and alone, with London at his feet and a dark shadow in his past, he was a mystery to all of them, rustics and royalty, squires and suffragettes, the women who loved him and the men who feared and hated him. He came from a far frontier in another world, yet he was by no means a stranger… even old General Flashman, who knew men and mischief better than most, never guessed the whole truth about “Mr American”.

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Frequently Bought Together

Mr American (Flashman Papers) + Black Ajax + The Pyrates
Price For All Three: £20.47

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Product details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; New Ed edition (1 Sep 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006470181
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006470182
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.8 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 160,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

The author of the famous 'Flashman Papers' and the 'Private McAuslan' stories, George MacDonald Fraser has worked on newspapers in Britain and Canada. In addition to his novels he has also written numerous films, most notably 'The Three Musketeers', 'The Four Musketeers', and the James Bond film, 'Octopussy'. George Macdonald Fraser died in January 2008 at the age of 82.

Product Description


Praise for ‘Black Ajax’:

‘Mr Fraser is a great historical novelist and in Black Ajax he is at the very top of his form. Damme if he ain’t.’
Christopher Matthew, Daily Mail

‘This is not a flashy novel, wearing its learning noisily. It’s rigorous, intelligent, meticulously horrifying. Wonderfully well done.’
Nicci Gerrard, Observer

Book Description

“Every page is sheer unadulterated pleasure.” The Times

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A quiet classic 7 Jun 2008
This is the George Macdonald Fraser book for people who don't usually read George Macdonald Fraser. The story of the American with a secret past coming 'home' to Edwardian England unfolds at a more leisurely pace than anything in the Flashman series, but it still has all the hallmarks that made Fraser such a superb writer: peerless dialogue, vividly realised characters (both fact and fiction: Edward VII, Kid Curry and a young Winston Churchill all make appearances), tautly-written moments of high drama and a beautifully observed sense of time and place. It reminded me slightly of RF Delderfield, only better written...and with added Flashman! Buy it - it's a quiet classic.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A touch of Henry James, a touch of Flashman 1 Jan 2008
The names of George MacDonald Fraser and Harry Flashman are inseparable, and deservedly so. Few series of novels have combined history, character, humour, and sheer sustained entertainment as they have. But those who pick up this excellent book expecting another of the same are in for a shock.
It is the story of Mark Franklin, an American former outlaw who has made a fortune with a lucky strike in mining and comes to Edwardian England to settle down in Norfolk, the county his ancestors emigrated from several generations before. He becomes a country squire and city gent, marries into the upper classes, and has a surprisingly eventful time. And no, this is not a romp, it's a lovingly slow-paced detailed and substantial novel, brimming with introspection, description, and first-rate dialogue as Franklin discovers that the risks, the threats, and the bad guys may not be as obvious as they are Out West but they are real nonetheless There is a touch of a Henry James "American innocent abroad" about this strong quiet incomer, but his ability to cope is not in doubt.
For many readers the high spots will be Franklin's occasional encounters with the aged but still lively and unscrupulous Flashman, but there are many excellent characters and scenes that these should not be allowed to diminish.
Sometimes the author's lovingly-detailed background information and scene-setting gets a little too detailed and goes on a bit too long but this is a minor concern when set against the book's many good things. As an enjoyable and (as always with MacDonald Fraser) informative read it is highly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb (but should have been superlative) 7 Aug 2012
By BeeGee
I have to say that, as a dyed-in-the-wool Flashman fan, it took me three attempts (over the course of at least an equal number of years) to actually read beyond the first couple of chapters or so, but am pleased, overall, that I finally did.

I have mixed feelings about the tale, however, but will not allow that to detract from, having eventually gotten used to the slower pace of Mark Franklin's life to that of the aforementioned Harry Flashman's, I was hooked and read it through almost without a pause.

Fraser was an astonishingly adept story teller and I have read most of his works, including his autobiographical "Quartered Safe Out Here" and as someone who comes from a long line of pugilists (my maternal grandfather having once championed the Staffordshire "Potteries" as a bare-knuckle boxer) I particularly enjoyed GMF's "Black Ajax". His storytelling is not in dispute, in this particular work either, except in a few instances:

1) Almost an entire chapter is devoted to a game of "Bridge" with nary an explanation as to just what is going on, exactly, to a none afficinado of the card-game, such as myself. This almost caused me to put the tome down, never to return to it.

2) Can I be the only reader who spotted the two plausible ways as to how the book would likely end (only to be proven wrong on each assumption) in that I assume GMF dropped the red-herring of all red-herrings when a certain gift was given for auction to a charity, the uncovering of which would have allowed Inspector Crawford to get his man. I hope and suspect that Mr Frazer's decision NOT to develop that angle was, indeed, a false trail rather than a plot-hole - it surely must have been, else why bring the subject of the auction and the gift up at all?
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36 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Yank seduced by a green and pleasant land 10 April 2002
It's late summer 1909 in Liverpool and a Yank steps off the boat from America. Mark Franklin is an authentic Westerner, his luggage containing Stetson, saddle, gun belt and two .44 Remington pistols.
I've been to England many times, and I love it. Unfortunately, my family's roots are not in the UK, nor have I had the longed-for opportunity to take up permanent residence there. In MR. AMERICAN, it's Franklin's great good luck to have made a fortune from a Nevada silver mine. This allows him to return to England in search of his roots - his forebears having immigrated to the Colonies hundreds of years before - and purchase the house, Manor Lancing, which dominates the Lincolnshire village of his ancestors, Castle Lancing.
I learned in English Lit 1A that every novel incorporates a conflict, which, in MR. AMERICAN, is subtle. To modern fiction readers, fed a steady diet of lurid murders-most-foul, global conspiracies, and courtroom duels, it may not seem like much of a conflict at all. Author George MacDonald Fraser, a Brit himself, has chosen to introduce into Edwardian society of pre- WWI England a rugged individualist matured in the late-19th century American West, and develop what happens. The WASP values that Franklin possesses from such a background - chivalry, self-reliance, forthrightness, loyalty, lack of class pretension, suspicion of authority - are occasionally at odds with the upper class social circle that soon adopts him.
For the reader, Mark will present as an appealing, stand-up fellow.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars brillient story, a fantastic read
A fantastic story, full of history and drama, beautifully written, with a hint of real events running through the book from start to finish. Read more
Published 6 months ago by geoff. beardsley
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable, but not overly enjoyable
I'm a great fan of GMF, particularly the Flashman series (who isn't?), and enjoyed the first couple of hundred pages of this book. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Nick the Shaker
5.0 out of 5 stars As good as flashman
Very good book much better than some other mcdonald books but as good as flashman which i always enjoyed reading
Published 19 months ago by Twinkle
2.0 out of 5 stars The Nursing Mother's Companion
Marriage between a decayed English estate and a rich American girl is a familiar theme in novels written in (or about) the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Merget
3.0 out of 5 stars Historical Tourism
Unlike many other reviewers, I was not taken in so much by Mr American, and over the course of 600 pages I had ample time to chew over my reasons. Read more
Published on 12 April 2012 by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Very different - Very Good.
I knew that this book would not be in the same vein as 'Flashman' although the old general makes an appearance. Read more
Published on 9 Feb 2011 by R. Baldwin
4.0 out of 5 stars Hmmm
Like most of the reviewers here, I went into this novel expecting a period romp and got a slow-paced exploration of an American fish-out-of-water in a gorgeously-drawn Edwardian... Read more
Published on 20 Sep 2010 by jjmarsden
3.0 out of 5 stars Atmosphere over Action
Mr American was not what I expected from the pen of Flashman's author, but it was nonetheless enjoyable. As other reviewers have described, the action is scant. Read more
Published on 31 Dec 2009 by M. CLAYTON-STEAD
5.0 out of 5 stars MacDonald Fraser - a Master Storyteller
Having read all the Flashman novels I was curious to know if G.M.F. could equal that great feat by writing something completely different. Read more
Published on 24 Nov 2009 by William D. Holmes
5.0 out of 5 stars A self indulgent masterpiece?
I admire George MacDonald Fraser considerably, and at times have been astonished at his range and perspective. Read more
Published on 3 Sep 2009 by Amazon Customer
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