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A Very English Hero: The Making of Frank Thompson
A Very English Hero: The Making of Frank Thompson
Price: £5.66

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dull, 5 Nov 2012
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I bought this along with Clare Mulley's "The spy who loved" because there are a few common characters that appear in both books. However, where the Mulley book was very readable and interesting this one feels long and repetitive - almost padded. Frank Thompson came from a talented family but the overly long background history borders on the tedious - the meticulous research is some way diminishes any warmth we should feel for the personalities. The whole structure of the book feels like Frank Thompson died too young to warrant a book by himself, which is a shame given his tragic death. I really wanted to be engaged by this book but it did not happen.

Patrick Leigh Fermor: An Adventure
Patrick Leigh Fermor: An Adventure
by Artemis Cooper
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £17.00

86 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book, excellent author, fascinating subject, 16 Oct 2012
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In less steady hands, this could have so easily become a sychophantic homage to a revered subject and it would be all the weaker for it. While clearly admiring her subject Artemis Cooper also recognizes that Patrick Leigh Fermor was not everyone's "cup of tea", and recounts many hilarious anecdotes that serve to humanize him. I particularly like the cringe-worthy meeting with Somerset Maughn, as well as the impetuous decision to observe one of the Greek civil wars on a borrowed horse. the book dispels many of the myths surrounding him and will undoubtedly form the base for a lot of scholarly analysis of a fascinating life. The portrayal of PLF's wife Joan and his close friend Xan Fielding also come to life in Cooper's writing.

I am an unabashed fan of the subject, Like a lot of Fermor's books I'm sure I will take pleasure inre-reading this . I also sincerely hope that the success of this book leads to a reprint or "kindlizing" of Cooper's book, Cairo during the War - which deserves a retread.
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