12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on 6 October 2004
When a born story teller like Patrick Leigh Fermor says that this author is a born story teller, you had better listen.
What is more, Bannfy was a statesman and aristocrat with a bird's eye view of the consequencies of the less well known Treaty of Trianon that followed the end of World War 1.
In the book Bannfy relates the current state of Hungary for the period 1925-45, and a large amount of entertaining historical background. There is a section of the book that deals with the revolutions of 1848. Bannfy recounts it with such an intimate knowledge and style that you feel as if he was there, rather than recounting century old family history.
The book can be viewed as an historic background piece for the legion of fans of Fermor's "two part" trilogy. But it is also a first class book in its own right.
One of the translators is a relative and the intimate knowlegde of the subject is another positive as it adds warmth to the book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 21 September 2010
In this book Banffy tries (and succeeds as much as is possible) to make sense of Hungarian political life in the first quarter of the 20thC. As an insider for much of that time, who knew everyone who mattered, he offers some amusing insights into some of the personalities of the time, and while never blowing his own trumpet too loudly, leaves the reader in no doubt that modern Hungary has much to thank him for.
I found the book amusing and informative, and can heartily recommend it to anyone interested in this subject.