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*Download Book ⇲ Happy Odyssey ↜ Adrian Carton de Wiart s autobiography is one of the most remarkable of military memoirs He was the son of a Belgian barrister, Leon Constant Ghislain Carton de Wiart 1854 1915 He, himself, was intended for the law, but abandoned his studies at Balliol College, Oxford, in 1899 to serve as a trooper in the South African War He abandoned the law for all time on 14 September 1901 when he received a direct commission in the 4th Dragoon Guards Carton de Wiart s extraordinary military career embraced service with the Somaliland Camel Corps 1914 15 , liaison officer with Polish forces 1939 , membership of the British Military Mission to Yugoslavia 1941 , a period as a prisoner of war 1941 43 , and three years as Churchill s representative to Chiang Kai shek 1943 46 Churchill was a great admirer During the Great War, besides commanding the 8th Glosters, Carton de Wiart was GOC 12 Brigade 1917 and GOC 105 Brigade April 1918 Both these command were terminated by wounds He was wounded eight times during the war including the loss of an eye and a hand , won the VC during the Batlle of the Somme, was mentioned in despatches six times, and was the model for Brigadier Ben Ritchie Hook in the Sword of Honour trilogy of Evelyn Waugh.

8 thoughts on “Happy Odyssey

  1. Anton Anton says:

    This has to be one of the greatest autobiographies ever written, simply because of its hilarity based on de Wiart s matter of fact style He served in most major campaigns from the Boer war though to the Second World War and was shot in the stomach twice, shot in the face, shot through the head, had multiple wounds in his legs, lost a hand bit off his own fingers as well as being shot through the hip and ear he was wounded while pig sticking in India and broke his spine in China he survived two plane crashes one in Africa and one in the Middle East he was presumed dead on several occasions and tunnelled out of an Italian prisoner of war camp He doesn t really mention his gallantry awards such as the Victoria Cross and may mention being badly wounded in the same way that we may say that we stubbed a toe.There is no world leader or military leader who he did not meet in the first half of the twentieth century, yet he doesn t name drop for kudos, he is extremely humble Fo...

  2. Simon Binning Simon Binning says:

    This is a fascinating book about a remarkable life Adrian Carton de Wiart was an army officer of Belgian and Irish ancestry, whose story could have been the original boys own adventure He fought in the Boer War, WW1, WW2 was wounded many times, losing an eye and a hand, and winning the VC He served in Africa, India, Europe, Poland and China, and met a who s who of world leaders along the way.This book was written in 1950 and has no pretensions to literary merit it is a straightforward memoir from a military man from a different age Some of the things he describes and the way he describes different nationalities are definitely from another era, but this does not detract from the sheer audacity of the man By the end, I m not sure I liked the man, but I certainly respected his outlook on life, his perseverance, and his achievements His antics seem unbelievable at times, but they do check out, and I m not sure that the man who comes out of the pages would have felt the ne...

  3. Tom Mortley Tom Mortley says:

    So very, very enjoyable Covers some fascinating areas of late British Imperial History I especially find his views on Poland interesting given how generally our relationship with them is generally presented.But this covers off stuff like the assassination of Lee Stack, the Cairo Conference, a charming description of the Pinsk Marshes and a whirlwind tour around the heady days of High British Imperialism, as well as many other memorable moments but without that banal veneer so misapplied by modern authors.It s also just wonderfully written.

  4. Mike B Mike B says:

    Do not expect the modern tales of warfare, this book harks back to a time when people described adventure and heroism as derring do The life of Adrian Carton Dr Wiart is played out in this autobiography with a whimsical distance and vocabulary that is reminiscent of a JB Priestly tale, there are racist overtones to the book but they have to be read in context to the time that it was written and accepted as the words of a man knew no better than how he had been raised in a time of Empire This book is an interesting study in a way of life sadly passed, a time of war and conflict yet a time of innocence much lacking in today s era A thoroughly good read and an insight into a remarkable man.

  5. Gkeaney Gkeaney says:

    I bought this due to the facts behind his life which were just extraordinary, unfortunately one of his best traits is also modesty which doesn t help him here I was expecting a larger than life adventure but so much of the book is bogged down in between major events which a massive amount of time spent on hunting and such.No denying this individual had a significant impact on various war efforts and his heroics perhaps not actual leadership are to be commended and celebrated but the novel doesn t really bring home this message in an overly exciting way and therefore I felt this was a missed opportunity.

  6. Robert Mathews Robert Mathews says:

    I read this book after seeing a post about General Dewiart on Facebook and I wanted to know about him Well what an amazing man he was, never happier than when he was at war, he certainly saw action than most men can only imagine Well worth a read.

  7. ebats.us Customer ebats.us Customer says:

    I bought the book as I knew that Col Bob Ogilby, who is mentioned six times in the book, was a friend of General Carton de Wiart We had spoken about him as a family when I was a teenager I did not realise, however that my great uncle and de Wiart were such good friends and had fought together.It is a fascinating rendition of a bygone era Our wars are no longer fought in this manner today But I have to admire the author s courage and humour in adversity I found the book a fascinating read.

  8. John Sheldon John Sheldon says:

    I used to have this book when I was a kid I came across the reference recently and couldn t resist it It is very, very dated but fascinating and enjoyable.