Titel: Flashman and the Tiger. Uncorrected proof.
Verlag: Harper Collins, London, 1999
Einband: Soft cover
Auflage: 1st Edition
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Harry Flashman: the unrepentant bully of Tom Brown's schooldays, now with a Victoria Cross, has three main talents - horsemanship, facility with foreign languages and fornication. A reluctant military hero, Flashman plays a key part in most of the defining military campaigns of the 19th century, despite trying his utmost to escape them all. Flash Harry is back! The first new Flashman novel since Flashman and the Angel of the Lord, this is the long-awaited new instalment of the Flashman Papers. When Sir Harry Flashman, V.C., the celebrated Victorian soldier, scoundrel, amorist and self-confessed poltroon's memoirs first came to light thirty years ago, the world was finally illuminated about what became of the celebrated cowardly bully from Tom Brown's Schooldays. Now, in addition to the other famous adventures of Flash Harry contained in the Flashman Papers, come three new episodes in the career of this eminent if disreputable adventurer. The title piece touches on two of the most spectacular military actions of the century and sees Flashman pitted against one of the greatest villains of the day, and observing, with his usual jaundiced eye, two of its most famous heroes. As always with George MacDonald Fraser, Flashman's adventures are related with verve, dash and meticulous historical detail.Review:
Flashman and the Tiger is George MacDonald Fraser's 11th chronicle of Sir Harry Flashman, a "celebrated Victorian soldier, scoundrel, amorist, and self-confessed poltroon." Written with great wit and ingenuity, the series is presented as a succession of long-lost memoirs, which Fraser is simply editing for a modern readership. Thus does he interrupt Sir Harry's voice with footnotes, appendices, and tail-gunning apologies. Indeed, Fraser, whose editorial persona is humorless and academic, seems almost embarrassed in the presence of his subject's unbridled self-love.
This time the year is 1878, and Flashman is poking his nose into some deep political intrigue for a journalist friend who's done him various unsavory favors. Our favorite swashbuckler has just returned from Paris, where he was awarded the Legion of Honor. Yet readers familiar with Flashman's saga will know this is simply one more piece of tin to add to his capacious collection--and that even as he's revered by those around him, he finds it impossible to take himself seriously. Instead he regards himself as "one of those fortunate critters who ... are simply without shame, and wouldn't know Conscience if they tripped over it in broad day."
As usual, Flashman stumbles through history like a bull in a china shop. At the end of the first section, "The Road to Charing Cross," we realize that he's delayed the onset of World War I by various wranglings with the would-be assassins of Emperor Franz Josef of Austria. The following sections put him in contact with the Prince of Wales, a procession of remarkable whores, Zulu warriors, and yet more remarkable whores. Fraser's brashly perfect prose both fuels and awakens the imagination. And in the end the reader has to wonder: which wars almost came to pass, but were averted by a half-drunk war hero with a lust for life? --Emily White
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