Helpful votes received on reviews: 61% (252 of 414)
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Top Reviewer Ranking: 22,459 - Total Helpful Votes: 252 of 414
Rage (The Courtneys of Africa) by Wilbur Smith
This is the first Wilbur Smith book I have read. It will not be the last. Set in the apartheid era in South Africa Smith enters, with what seems sympathetic and penetrating clarity, into the mindsets of both the Blacks and the Afrikaners. The context is of South Africa at the time and the violence, politics, intrigues, romance and sex are drawn vividly and with thrilling pace. What I so much liked was the subtlety with which the characters are drawn. There are no 100 per cent heroes or villains. They are all a mixture with virtues and flaws. I ended the book with a sympathetic understanding for the Afrikaners that I had never had before.

This is a driving, tumultuous read… Read more
Desert War by Stephen W. Sears
Desert War by Stephen W. Sears
This is a clear, succinct and gripping description of the Desert War. The characters of the commanders are well delineated and the problems of fighting in the desert well described. It removes any glamorous fantasy about battle. The slaughter is unremitting and the tank battles like heavyweight boxers slugging each other till they drop.

Rommel is the charismatic star and even the Allied troops admire him. However, he has to contend with Hitler who seems to entertain paranoid fantasies about the effect of his orders. The way commanders found wanting are removed is an insight into the readiness to replace those who are not getting results. Some who have got results are… Read more
THE ANGEL OF ZIN -- A Holocaust Mystery by Clifford Irving
I have read accounts of life in the Nazi Concentration camps and shuddered at the horrors there. This brilliant book provides a detailed factual context but it also adds another aspect. This aspect is the humanising of some of the perpetrators as it probes their weaknesses as they succumb to being part of the policy. The hero struggles to absorb what he is discovering while continuing with his work in the heart of the camp. Others prefer to try not to know so that they may enjoy the benefits they accept of a hellish system. And still others are pitiless sadists for whom the most vile cruelty has become a perverted entertainment.

The Jews also have their strong and their… Read more

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