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Mussolini Paperback – 6 May 2004


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Product details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Phoenix (6 May 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1842121235
  • ISBN-13: 978-1842121238
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14.5 x 4.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 872,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Farrell has written much the most plausible biography of Mussolini -- Frank Johnson, The Daily Telegraph

I've read lots of books on old Benito, but this one is by far the best... unputdownable -- Taki, The Spectator

Book Description

Revelatory life of Mussolini, by a talented new biographer drawing on newly discovered material --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By James Mackintosh on 14 Jun. 2004
Format: Paperback
Nicholas Farrell's 'new life' on Mussolini is indeed a refreshingly 'new' appraisal of the man, his achievements and his failures. Farrell presents Mussolini as a dictator/politician who avoided most of the excesses of dictatorship and was as a result immensely popular with the Italian people for his achievements until the last few years when fatally he dragged Italy into the war. Farrell's theory is that if, like Franco, Mussolini had kept out of the war, he would have survived, like Franco, and history would have viewed him in a much kinder light.
The book is packed with details that interest and inform, for the most part it is written in a way that compels you to turn the pages and at its best reads like a thriller, for example the chapter on The Duce's betrayal by his closest colleagues entitled 'The Last Supper'. Farrell's excellent analysis of fascism as 'The Third Way' between socialism and capitalism reveals just why it had such popular appeal in the turmoil after the first world war.
The book is bound to provoke as it shows more sympathy to the dictator than is 'politically correct' but Farrell sets out the case why logically and consistently and forces us to re-examine our viewpoint and that demonstrates the book's merits.
For myself, I agree with Churchill's analysis that Mussolini's fatal character flaw was displayed in joining forces with Hitler and also with Farrell's comments that fascism probably would have ossified and become a spent force (cf Franco's Spain).
A thoroughly enjoyable and thought-provoking read!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "editorbjs" on 8 May 2004
Format: Paperback
Nicholas Farrell's 'new life' on Mussolini is indeed a refreshingly 'new' appraisal of the man, his achievements and his failures. Farrell presents Mussolini as a dictator/politician who avoided most of the excesses of dictatorship and was as a result immensely popular with the Italian people for his achievements until the last few years when fatally he dragged Italy into the war. Farrell's theory is that if, like Franco, Mussolini had kept out of the war, he would have survived, like Franco, and history would have viewed him in a much kinder light.
The book is packed with details that interest and inform, for the most part it is written in a way that compels you to turn the pages and at its best reads like a thriller, for example the chapter on The Duce's betrayal by his closest colleagues entitled 'The Last Supper'. Farrell's excellent analysis of fascism as 'The Third Way' between socialism and capitalism reveals just why it had such popular appeal in the turmoil after the first world war.
The book is bound to provoke as it shows more sympathy to the dictator than is 'politically correct' but Farrell sets out the case why logically and consistently and forces us to re-examine our viewpoint and that demonstrates the book's merits.
For myself, I agree with Churchill's analysis that Mussolini's fatal character flaw was displayed in joining forces with Hitler and also with Farrell's comments that fascism probably would have ossified and become a spent force (cf Franco's Spain).
A thoroughly enjoyable and thought-provoking read!!
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 10 July 2003
Format: Hardcover
like most people of my generation ( I am war veteran) i had a dim impression of benito mussolini. to me he was of the same noxious ilk as adolf hitler, josef stalin and fidel castro. he was a dictator who had no truck with the freedoms we fought to protect. i was not taken in by his funny voice or famous love of animals. to me italian soldiers were not to be feared as the germans because they did not want to fight and always had a happy smile and wanted to surrender. all those with whom i spoke said mussolini was a bad man who had no place in a country such as theirs where people wanted to make merry not make war. after the war i came to know and love italia as it is called by the locals. i never mastered the tongue but no matter because there was pasta and wine and much banter and laughter of the sort rarely heard in my quiet street. having read nicholas farrell's fine book in now see i was wrong. at the start mussolini was no thug but a man who invented a compromise between the loathsome extremities of right and left. only later did he fall victim to the barbarism we know as fascism. i do not know if nicholas farrell is right as i cannot claim to be an expert on the war but it certainly made me think. it takes a brave writer like nicholas farrell to come up with such a theory as this. many people will say he is not right to defend mussolini with reservations. i say that is freedom itself. i take issue with the writer on his parables regarding the connection between religion, food and football that he calls the Vital Triangle but otherwise throughly enjoyed this book. I will now have to think about the war again and why we fought the Italians. I hope the writer tackles more wars in his next book as he has a flair for it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Loved this book which gave us a whole new view of the man that was Mussolini. I always find it odd when visiting Italy, which I do regularly, that the man seems to be more revered than reviled some 70 years after his murder by the communist resistance in Dongo. If only he hadn't got into bed with Hitler in the late 30s I have no doubt he would have died peacefully of old age and be remembered even more fondly than he appears to be today. Nice book Mr Farrell, I thoroughly enjoyed the read!
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