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The Complete McAuslan Paperback – 2 Jun 2008

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Product details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (2 Jun. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006513719
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006513711
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 49,283 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

Review

‘It’s great fun and rings true: a Highland Fling of a book’
Eric Linklater

‘Twenty-five years have not dimmed Mr Fraser’s recollections of those hectic days of soldiering. One takes leave of his characters with real and grateful regret’
Sir Bernard Fergusson, Sunday Times

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 numeous 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.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By John Winterson Richards on 27 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Strange, although I am a hard core GMF fan, I was not tempted by his McAuslan trilogy until recently. For some reason, his publishers marketed it - foolishly - as farce: most editions, like this one, have cartoons on the cover that imply they are Tom Sharpe type satires. They are nothing of the sort. The tone is somewhere between GMF's "Flashman" and his superb war memoirs, "Quartered Safe Out Here". The eponymous McAuslan is the clown of the series, not the principal character. The protagonist is Lieutenant Dand McNeill - a thinly disguised GMF - and the stories are based on the author's own experiences as a young army officer just after the end of the Second World War. The key to appreciating the stories is remembering a fact that is mentioned very delicately but never overstressed: these characters are in a limbo after the end of hard war service, most of them awaiting demobilisation and most of them slightly amazed to have survived. Recently commissioned from the ranks after combat in Burma, McNeill himself has experienced many extraordinary things, but is still a young man with limited experience of ordinary life. These stories are not farces but the rites of passage of a boy who has resumed the process of growing up after a horrifying intermission. It is a poignant evocation of a lost youth, and of a lost time and place. As such, it succeeds brilliantly. It is not one of GMF's major works but even minor GMF is better than anything that has ever won the Booker.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By L O'connor on 2 July 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
All three of George Macdonald Fraser's entrancing collections of armys stories are gathered together in this incredibly good value book. The stories are narrated by Dand McNeil, a young subaltern in a Scottish regiment serving in North Africa just after WW2.McNeil has to deal with such typical problems of army life as a General who wants to dance a hundred-and-twenty-eightsome reel, a soldier being court-martialed for refusing to admit he's dirty, a general knowledge quiz between rival regiments, looking after a screaming baby on a night train to Palestine, and his kilt falling off while he mounts guard at Edinburgh Castle. These storeis are absolutely wonderful, almost all hilarious, a few very moving,and full of unforgettable characters, the wily old Colonel, the very highland Pipe Sergeant, the enigmatic RSM, wee Wullie, and of course McAuslan, the Dirtiest Soldier in the World.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 6 Mar. 2004
Format: Paperback
This is one of the most fantastic books based on military life i have ever read. As a soldier this holds extra intrigue for me but would thrill civilians alike. Fraser once again shows his skills in showing the true humour of a situation and the uses this wherever possible. McAuslan is a character i will never forget and whom i am not sorry i will never serve with although i have much compassion for him. I was glued to this book for days and when finished i wanted more, i would definatlely recommend this to anyone as it is a masterpeice.
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Joe HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 9 Mar. 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Because THE COMPLETE MCAUSLAN isn't available in the Colonies, I had to spend the extra gold to get it shipped across The Pond - and it was worth every penny.
This is one of the funniest books I've ever read. Granted, it's actually a compendium of three works previously published over many years, but I salute Fraser's ability to sustain the level of humor from the beginning to end of his McAuslan saga.
Another of the author's remarkable talents is his ability to recreate in text a heavy Scottish dialect. After finishing, I gave the book to a colleague from Scotland, and she delightedly pronounced the dialogue authentic.
I suspect that this collection of stories, based on Fraser's reminiscences of his own stint with a Highland regiment, will entertain anyone who's ever served in the military, no matter what country or service branch. I myself spent 11 years in the U.S. Navy, and I couldn't put it down.
Absolutely first class!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Didier TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 Oct. 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What can I say? This book had me laughing out loud constantly at the incredible stories about private McAuslan in the first years after World War II. Some of it may be exaggerated but most of it sounds true enough (probably is, I've been in the army too), which makes it all the more fun. I've read all of the Flashman-novels as well and, though it's set in an entirely different period and with a very different main character, McAuslan is as funny. This book is a guaranteed cure for any kind of blues!
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40 of 42 people found the following review helpful By H.S.A. on 28 Aug. 2003
Format: Paperback
By now, I've read about 70% of Fraser's published work.
The Flashman series, is in a class by itself. 'Steel Bonnets' was slightly tough sledding for me. 'Quartered Safe Out Here' was excellent. But, 'The Complete McAuslan' was phenomenal. I can't really say anything better than has been said by the other reviewers.
Though the humor is subtle, I was practically rolling on the floor with tears through most of it. Having never served in the military, I can't say that I can personally relate to much of what's in the book, but, that's the beauty of it. Fraser is such an excellent writer, you don't have to be a former serviceman to get it or appreciate it! (It's as much about Scotland as the Gordons).
This book was so good I didn't want to end.
Had I read it as a teen, I probably would have run off to Scotland and tried to enlist in the Black Watch. (They're one of the few Regiments that'll take Americans...)
It's not in print in America, but I'm glad it's in print in the UK. Right after I finished it, I ordered about 4 or 5 copies for my friends over here, as gifts.
Great book!!! I can't say enough about it.
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