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Flashman and the Dragon Audio CD – Abridged, Audiobook, CD

4.8 out of 5 stars 50 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD: 5 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Abridged edition edition (18 Feb. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007266545
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007266548
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 2.4 x 12.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,015,052 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

'The Flashman Papers do what all great sagas do – winning new admirers along the way but never, ever betraying old ones. It is an immense achievement.' Sunday Telegraph

‘Not so much a march as a full-blooded charge, fortified by the usual lashings of salty sex, meticulously choreographed battle scenes and hilariously spineless acts of self preservation by Flashman.’ Sunday Times

‘Not only are the Flashman books extremely funny, but they give meticulous care to authenticity. You can, between the guffaws, learn from them.’ Washington Post

‘A first-rate historical novelist’ Kingsley Amis

From the Back Cover

“When all other trusts fail, turn to Flashman”
Abraham Lincoln

Unfortunately, in China in 1860, a lot of people did: the English vicar’s daughter with her cargo of opium; Lord Elgin in search of an intelligence chief; the Emperor’s ravishing concubine, seeking a champion in her struggles for power; and Szu-Zhan, the female bandit colossus, as practised in the arts of love as in the arts of war.

They were not to know that behind his Victoria Cross, Flash Harry was a base coward and a charlatan. They took him at face value. And he took them, for all he could, while China seethed through the bloodiest civil war in history and the British and French armies hacked their way to the heart of the Forbidden City…

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
'Flashman and the Dragon' has a flying start where the Victorian anti-hero is smuggling opium on the Pearl River - or so he thinks. Seduced into this new adventure by an attractive preacher's wife in Hong Kong, it turns out that he is smuggling firearms to Taiping rebels. The year is 1860 - as most every Westerner has forgotten and as every Chinese remembers, the year that a British/French force marched on Peking and burned the Summer Palace. Just to make the point that the Chinese should not think of obstructing the Free Market when it comes to opium trading.

Clearly a promising setting for Flashman, who by now has achieved fame and a Colonel's rank thanks to his earlier exploits - Afghanistan, the Anglo-Sikh war, the Crimea, the Sepoy Mutiny and some smaller adventures in Africa, America and Southeast Asia. In my view, this is another really interesting, entertaining addition to the series, mixing coarse humor with mightily interesting insights in 19th century history. The series, unwittingly I am sure, sheds some light on the fashionable pastime of criticizing 'The Empire'. While nobody in their right mind would think that the Opium wars, let alone the burning of the Summer palace, were justifiable, there is a subtlety. The Taiping rebellion, a purely indigenous phenomenon, cost more casualties than World War 1. Needless to say, this dwarfs all the casualties from Western transgressions. This particular rebellion was actually stopped, finally, largely thanks to Western aid (the 'Ever Victorious Army' - lead amongst others by Gordon of Khartoum fame). Two wrongs do not make one right. Still, people should consider other contemporary evils, when whining about Imperialism.

Back to the book: certainly a recommendation, entertaining as well as educational.
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The more I read the Flashman series the more impressed I get and the more I wonder at the fact that George MacDonald Fraser didn't get a knighthood and an honorary degree for services to the understanding of English History during the Victorian Era. The man's a genius!
"Flashman and the Dragon" is Flashman's China adventure covering the Taiping Rebellion (the greatest loss of life in any civil war and - I believe - second only to the Second World War) and the Second China (or Opium) War. The tale is hilarious at times but it is also quite enlightening about a moment in history I doubt many of us are aware of.
The British Empire was created by men who really did have stiff upper lips and ramrod straight backs and we see their self-confidence and courage matched against a different, just as arrogant, culture. In a tale where the British and French are pulled (almost unwillingly) into a war in order to ensure Chinese adherence to existing trade agreements and where the Chinese actually do see themselves as the centre of the world where everyone (except themselves) is a barbarian only fit to be treated as a slave, casual heroism abounds.
Through the maelstrom sails Flashman, bravely trying to avoid any situation in which he might put his life at risk and exploiting any misunderstanding that places him in a heroic light. We see him at his worst - and at his best... and we learn so much about this far-off time and place that still has resonance today.
The whole book asks serious questions about what constitutes civilised behaviour and about the crimes committed by the powerful... and what might be a suitable means of punishment for those crimes. China still looks back at the form of punishment meted out.
... and the ending! How lovely - only Flashman!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Every Flashman book gets five stars. They never fail to entertain on the highest level. I just wish there were more in this world.
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very good
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This is a great book love allthe flashman books. amazing fun to read! the ultimate anithero. if you are looking for a good read that will entretain and educate this is it! great research about the historical events.
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Format: Paperback
One of the best of the series, Flashman and the Dragon combines the usual sublime writing with a particularly fascinating, and not too-well known, military campaign. If you want to learn something new about Victorian history without realising you are making the effort there is no better way.
Highly recommended, and if you liked any of the other Flashman's you will be safe buying this book
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By Parm TOP 500 REVIEWER on 15 Jun. 2011
Format: Audio CD
For a long time people had expounded the brilliance of the flashman and the books are damn fine to read, i don't think it needs me or anyone else to write a review saying about the high quality of the writing and characters... but for me the real brilliance comes to the fore when the book is read by the likes of Rupert Penry-Jones or Toby Stephens.
I love to listen to the Flashman books on audio format when im on holiday, the only issue i have is to make sure i dont start talking like a Victorian cad whilst going to the bar to get a drink.

If you love the books and have not tried the audio format yet do so, i promise you its a whole new way to experience the world of Flashman, and if you are new to the Man...go on..you will love him.
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Format: Paperback
Much historical fiction, regardless of what period it covers or whether it is aspires to literary merit, positions its fictitious characters in situations of great historical significance. It should not be underestimated how difficult it is do this well. To convince your readers, for example that one lily-livered cad could both be with the 'brother of Jesus' at the Taeping Rebellion and at the Summer Place at the conclusion of the Second Opium War is one heck of a feat. MacDonald Fraser, as always, pulls it off flawlessly. His steadfast attention to detail and refusal to gloss over any of his meticulously plotted narrative means that he always brings his reader with him as he moves Flashy through the great moments of Victorian history.

Flashman at the Dragon is as well-researched and beautifully constructed as always. Many of the Flashman novels cover well known events in the history of the British Empire (the Charge of the Light Brigade, Rorke's Drift, the retreat from Kabul, the Indian Mutiny etc.) and these are always illuminating. Oddly though it is often when he is dramatizing periods and people that are less familiar, such as here, that MacDonald Fraser it at his most engaging. A quick piece of advice of anyone new to Flashman. Read them in chronological rather than published order. That way you can happily follow Flashy from irascible young officer to curmudgeonly old General.
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