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Prince Arthur

Paul Addison

21 August 1980
by Max Egremont.
Collins, 391 pp., £12.95, June 1980, 0 00 216043 9
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... we stand in need either of a moratorium on the subject, or of something special – an exciting new cache of evidence, or better still, fresh ideas. Some biographers claim to be destroying a myth. MaxEgremont sets himself the more modest goal of illuminating in some degree a remote and elusive personality. Nor is it hard to discover why it is that Balfour piques his curiosity. His interest is, in ...

After Seven Hundred Years

Neal Ascherson: Ghosts of East Prussia

24 May 2012
Forgotten Land: Journeys among the Ghosts of East Prussia 
by Max Egremont.
Picador, 356 pp., £9.99, April 2012, 978 0 330 45660 9
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... East Prussia they lost but still see in dreams continues to exist on a plane beyond reality. But it is also about what did happen in this beautiful, brutally contested and colonised corner of Europe. MaxEgremont, a graceful and practised writer, has taken pains to learn its complicated history; he has driven and tramped back and forth across the territory, now divided between three independent ...

Nuclear Fiction

D.A.N. Jones

8 May 1986
The Nuclear Age 
by Tim O’Brien.
Collins, 312 pp., £10.95, March 1986, 0 00 223015 1
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Acts of Faith 
by Hans Koning.
Gollancz, 182 pp., £8.95, February 1986, 9780575037441
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A Funny Dirty Little War 
by Osvaldo Soriano, translated by Nick Caistor.
Readers International, 108 pp., £7.95, March 1986, 0 930523 17 2
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by Nuruddin Farah.
Picador, 246 pp., £3.50, March 1986, 0 330 28710 9
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Tennis and the Masai 
by Nicholas Best.
Hutchinson, 176 pp., £8.95, March 1986, 0 09 163770 8
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Dear Shadows 
by Max Egremont.
Secker, 310 pp., £9.95, March 1986, 0 436 14160 4
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... to another snob-school in England, with nothing to protect him but his gun and bush knife, his gazelle hide, his elephant-hair bracelet and his Kikuyu witch-doctor’s charm. Even more restful is MaxEgremont’s Dear Shadows, a good English comedy – with just a touch of farce, when the commercial exploitation of stately homes, Our Heritage, is considered. The gallant young Lord Erdley is (like ...


Peter Campbell

31 August 1989
A Particular Place 
by Mary Hocking.
Chatto, 216 pp., £12.95, June 1989, 0 7011 3454 2
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The House of Fear, Notes from Down Below 
by Leonora Carrington.
Virago, 216 pp., £10.99, July 1989, 1 85381 048 7
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Painted Lives 
by Max Egremont.
Hamish Hamilton, 205 pp., £11.95, May 1989, 0 241 12706 8
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The Ultimate Good Luck 
by Richard Ford.
Collins Harvill, 201 pp., £11.95, July 1989, 0 00 271853 7
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... Edward Lear and Harry Graham: a reading-list which suggests a mix of the commonsensical and the fantastical which consorts easily with the insect-headed humans and other macabre juxtapositions of Max Ernst’s collage illustrations – much of what is here was written while Carrington and Ernst were living together in France in 1938. There is a dandified spareness about her prose – and a Harry ...

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