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Cry Havoc Hardcover – 27 Oct 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 351 pages
  • Publisher: John Blake Publishing Ltd; 1st edition (27 Oct 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1843584034
  • ISBN-13: 978-1843584032
  • Product Dimensions: 3.8 x 15.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 151,778 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Simon Mann is from a strong military background. His paternal grandfather served with the Scots Guards in the Great War and his maternal grandfather served as a senior engineer in the South African Division in World War II. His father and three uncles also served in the Scots Guards in World War II, his father winning two MCs and a DSO. Born into the Mann brewing dynasty, Simon Mann went to Eton and then Sandhurst. The Scots Guards and the SAS followed. Simon then became a businessman, drifting slowly but surely into the world of security consultancy and intelligence for hire. Mann rejoined the British Army for the first Gulf War, serving on the staff of General Sir Peter de la Billiere. From there, Simon became an oil man, a move which threw him into the Angolan Civil war in 1993. This was followed by his involvement in the civil war in Sierra Leone form 1994 to 1996. In 2004, he was arrested in Zimbabwe because of his involvement in the plot to overthrow the ruling tyrant of Equatorial Guinea. Simon has seven children and now lives by the sea with his wife, Amanda.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Greg Waggett on 9 Feb 2012
Format: Hardcover
This is an extraordinary story. But the writing is dreadful - which is a great pity because Simon Mann is undoubtedly one of Britain's foremost military entrepreneurs, greater even than Mike Hoare of Congo fame.

There is a penchant for lots of short, sharp sentences bundled together. Like this. Tap-tap. All staccato. In a single paragraph. To give a sense of pace. Obviously. This is OK but it needs leavening with a copywriter's artifice to make the passages flow. It is odd that his literary agent and publisher didn't do something about this. And the chronology is muddled. Thus the book is robbed of both clarity and impact. How much more vivid it could have been, dammit.

But if you like the genre, stick with it because the content saves the book. Just about. I am filled with admiration for his sense of high-risk adventure. A buccaneer on the side of the angels - more or less. I am still not completely clear as to why he didn't abort the effort on Equatorial Guinea but I guess that when you perceive that you have powerful organs of state - or states in this case - backing you, albeit implicitly, and a project gathers momentum, you pass the tipping point so there's no turning back.

Moreover, the book provides a lot of history; it is about rather more than the Equatorial Guinea debacle and some successes add a positive note to the concluding disaster.

I found his description of his time in captivity quite harrowing. Interestingly, it seems his spell in E Guinean jails was less awful than that in Zimbabwean hell-holes. Ghastly. One salutes him for coping with five and a half years' incarceration with considerable resourcefulness as well as mental resilience. And he writes movingly about his release.

Two small asides.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Zuluwarrior on 26 Dec 2011
Format: Hardcover
This for me was a must read book. Given the press speculation, repeated Government denials in the UK media and the personalities involved you had to read Simon Mann's first hand and exceptionally personal account of the events to get to the truth of what happened during this failed coup. Given the circumstances of his recording of the facts you just have to roll with the punches as it jumps from location to location, times and events. It provides the reader with a real insight as to what Simon Mann was going through personally at every stage of the mission planning, execution and his evential capture and internment. Cut away the fact that you may not agree with his politics or his thirst for financial gain through what he hoped would be the successful execution of the mission it is a rivetting read and a true personal account. There is much more that is not said in the book but it will keep you enthraled. It captures his moods as they happen, his survivors instinct while in captivity, his mental strength and discipline all combined to develop strategies to keep one step ahead of the prison staff, while throughout there is the constant threat of deportation and execution. The narrative provides the reader with a microspope with which to examine Simon Mann who is truly a remarkable character. Thoroughly enjoyable and strongly recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By KD7 on 4 Sep 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was very interested in the underlying story re the EG coup and the various characters associated with it and their motivations. Frankly if you share these goals keep your money in your pocket as you will be none the wiser at the end.

Frankly this is the worst book I have read in the last decade. The prose is dispiriting and the style jumping from one topic to another reflects what I think is the reality of a greedy, intellectually challenged fool trying to string out a story to construct a book.

Strong recommendation, this book is appalling and life is too short to read this rubbish when there are millions of great books out there.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hector on 19 Aug 2012
Format: Hardcover
I had been waiting for Simon Manns story for some time. As other reviewers have said - this is impossible to read it is so badly written. I would suggest he finds an editor to describe his life story which should be fascinating. Cry Havoc went into the charity box. Disappointing.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 14 Dec 2011
Format: Hardcover
Warning! To all readers who have waited for this side to be told be prepared to be disappointed.
First, not sure why so many names, places, and simple facts had to be changed when many parts of this story has been told in detail before by Eeben Barlow, Jim Hooper and Al J. Venter. A specific example is the misrepresentation of the Battle of Soyo, Angola. This altering just adds to the confusion and is only compounded by the exclusion of an index.
Second, this book reads like Tom Clancy fiction with one character being at the center of all the important decisions and events. When compared to other sources some events appeared manufactured just to inject the author into the fight.
Please to all that read this book as a single source take the time to read the titles linked below. When that is done decide for yourself if this book is fact or fiction. This is not an attack just an attempt for the truth to be flushed out and passed on to others.

Bloodsong!
Executive Outcomes: Against All Odds
WAR DOG: Fighting Other People's Wars -The Modern Mercenary in Combat
My Friend the Mercenary
Shadow Company [DVD] [2006] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
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