Soldier Sahibs: The Men Who Made the North-West Frontier Paperback – 21 Jun 2012
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A marvellous book in the best traditions of narrative history: colourful, informative and splendidly readable. I can give it no greater praise than to admit I would like to have written it myself (SAUL DAVID in the DAILY TELEGRAPH)
Allen is an excellent guide through this fascinating territory . . . [A] magnificent book' WILLIAM DALRYMPLE in the SUNDAY TIMES -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Hardcover.
Drawing extensively on the men's diaries, journals and letters, this text retells the story of a brotherhood of young men who together laid claim to one of the most notorious frontiers in the world: India's north-west frontier.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
And what a tale it is: culture clashes, petty bureaucrats, noble savages. Allen draws heavily upon the letters, diaries and reports of the principle heroes of the tale, leading to a history that is drenched in Victorian stereotypes and ideals. With this caveat in mind, however, Allen does a great job of bringing the modern reader into the world walked by Nicholson and his compatriots. The writing draws in the reader with fantastic tale after fantastic tale, starting with a brief biography of Nicholson and of the East India Company and ending with the lifting of the siege of Delhi during the Sepoy Rebellion. There are lots of vignettes highlighting life in the service of "John Company" and the British Empire and the inevitable culture clashes that occurred across the subcontinent.
The author, Charles Allen, was himself born in India and he brings to the story the local feel and knowledge of one who has been there. You can sense his passion for these men and this area reflected in the narrative. And what an exciting story he tells! From minor skirmishes to full scale battles, from raids and ambushes to terrifying accounts of the style of fighting practiced by those most cunning of warriors that the British had to fight against. Throughout the story you read about the amazing courage and dignity that these young men had. As a reader you tend to believe that these men actually wanted to do the best for the people of this region regardless of what their hierarchy or the local rulers and princes wanted.
The narrative moves along quickly and draws you into the story as you follow the paths of these men from becoming young officers and learning the ways of the North-West Frontier until their demise and the passing of this era. The author utilises diaries, journals and letters of the participants and the book abounds with individual stories from these 'Soldier Sahibs'. This is a great story and I am sure that readers who love a good book or decent history will find this book a gem.
The author provides a number of black & white photographs and a few maps although I would have liked more maps within the book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really, really wanted to like this book, I tried so hard but could not get into it. its not that's its a bad book (or author) but throughout I was screaming! Read morePublished 15 days ago by james cooper
We live in an age that tries to ignore that Great Britain ever had an empire, by doing so we ignore the many of our countrymen who fought and died for our country. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Thomas S-R
I already have this book, but bought it again for a friend. An excellent read.Published 21 months ago by cubitts
A real cracker-fearless derring do types who held it all together but I pitied the poor tribesmenPublished on 2 Aug. 2014 by gingivae+
A fascinating, if tumultuous, part of the world and an interesting period in history. The days of empire seem so alien and extraordinary to us in the twenty first century. Read morePublished on 29 May 2014 by RMCT
Covers this very detailed period in Anglo-Indian history while providing information about the personal relationships of the senior soldiers and administrators in IndiaPublished on 14 July 2013 by ronniejohnston
This is a good and clear analysis but it is not as effective as Peter Hopkin's The Great Game. Charles Allen covers some of the similar terrain, some of the similar issues but... Read morePublished on 18 Jan. 2013 by peter upton
This book is a must read for any fans of Charles Allen who has written so widely on the British Raj in India about the extraordinary men who blazed a trail of adventure in the... Read morePublished on 31 Oct. 2012 by Hugh
An era of history now sadly neglected and ignored by many is brought to life by the author often using the words of the protagonists themselves or eye witnesses both major and... Read morePublished on 2 Sept. 2012 by Cybercossack