Monday, July 26, 2010

Flashman








Book covers in the Flashman series. Wikipedia says:

Sir Harry Paget Flashman VC KCB KCIE (1822–1915) is a fictional character created by George MacDonald Fraser (1925–2008), but based on the character "Flashman" in Tom Brown's Schooldays (1857), a semi-autobiographical work by Thomas Hughes (1822–1896).

In Liam Kelly's book, Flashman is the notorious bully of Rugby School named Morgan who persecutes Tom Brown, and who is finally expelled for drunkenness. Twentieth century author George MacDonald Fraser had the idea of writing Flashman's memoirs, in which the school bully would be identified with an "illustrious Victorian soldier": experiencing many 19th century wars and adventures and rising to high rank in the British Army, acclaimed as a great soldier, while remaining by his unapologetic self-description "a scoundrel, a liar, a cheat, a thief, a coward—and oh yes, a toady." Fraser's Flashman is an antihero who runs from danger or hides cowering in fear, betrays or abandons acquaintances at the slightest incentive, bullies and beats servants with gusto, beds every available woman, carries off any loot he can grab, gambles and boozes enthusiastically, and yet, through a combination of luck and cunning, usually ends each volume acclaimed as a hero.
The books are available at Amazon. Via.

4 comments:

  1. And they are all a lot of fun. One of my favorite factoids (again, from Wikipedia): "When the first book, Flashman, was published in the United States, ten of 34 reviews took it to be an obscure but real memoir."

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  2. i believe made into the movie Royal Flashman, featuring the properly roguish and cowardly Malcolm McDowell

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0073639/

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  3. I read the Flashman series when I was 14 or 15, and I loved them. They're action-packed and funny, with a hint of sexy time.

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  4. The books are great but might offend some that are hyper PC. The movie can be passed over though, if only it was more Caligula and less Mr. Bean.

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