The author came once and addressed this reviewer's school, of which he was a former inmate. He described himself to us as "a rolling stone who has gathered some moss".
The descriptions of the author's young life with the rubber planters in Malaya are fun, but the really fascinating chapters are towards the end of the book, when he describes his many meetings with Trostky and Lenin and other leaders of the Bolshevik revolution in Russia towards the end of the First World War, and his failed attempts to dissuade the Western Allies from intervening to try and defeat the nascent revolution. Then being accused, falsely, by Bolshevik elements of being behind the assassination attempt on Lenin, resulting in his imprisonment in the Lubyanka and the Kremlin before being released in a spy swap, as Lenin recovered from his serious injuries.
Some of the middle parts of the book can be a bit tedious, as we are introduced to one Russian after another, but the gripping final chapters fully reward perseverance. The author's son provides a useful forward, which casts light on all the many activities that his father was involved in during the rest of his unusually eventual life.