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Summary

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 nineteenth century despite trying his utmost to escape them all.

Flashman, soldier, duellist, lover, imposter, coward, cad, and hero triumphs in this first installment of The Flashman Papers. His adventures as the reluctant secret agent in Afghanistan and his entry into the exclusive company of Lord Cardigan's Hussars culminate in his foulest hour - his part in the historic disaster of the Retreat from Kabul.

This is the story of a blackguard who enjoyed villainy for its own sake. Shameless, exciting, and funny, Flashman's deplorable odyssey is observed with the cynical eye of a scoundrel who was honest only in reporting what he saw. He makes all other black sheep look respectably grey.

©2015 George MacDonald Fraser (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

What listeners say about Flashman

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Spoilt by Poor Narration

Would you try another book written by George MacDonald Fraser or narrated by Colin Mace?

This is one of my favourite books, full of humour, history and excitement. This recording is spoilt by bland narration. The story is told by Flashman writing at the end of his life but we get neither the cynical and knowing old man nor the passionate, excitable, terrified young one. Instead it sounds like the vicar giving a geography lecture to the Women's Institute.

Who might you have cast as narrator instead of Colin Mace?

The Flashman books read by Timothy West seem to have disappeared from Audible. They were infinitely superior, a real joy to listen to.

Any additional comments?

Bring back Timothy West

25 people found this helpful

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Flashman rides forth.....

I'm a fan of the Flashman books, and loved the Timothy West-narrated versions that used to be available. Sadly, only a few titles were ever released, so I've had to wait until now to be able to hear the rest of the stories in their full unabridged versions, now with Colin Mace in the narrators chair. The story itself is classic Flashman, the cowardly bully from Tom Brown's Schooldays, charting his expulsion from school to joining the Army and his adventures in Afghanistan. It's a perfect place to start.

For the narration, Colin Mace does a good job, whilst not *quite* reaching the level of sheer caddishness that Timothy West managed to convey. Mace sounds a little "younger" when narrating, which does sit a little awkwardly to the "fact" that this is an elderly Flashie telling of his adventures. I'd also add that he has a habit of speaking a little quieterwhen not conveying speech, which can sometimes make you keep adjusting the volume to try to hear everything without it being too loud. That wouldn't be a problem for listeners at home, but if you're listening in a car like I do, it can be a bit niggly to have to do this. It's a minor thing, though.

I'll definitely be adding others from the mace-narrated collection to my library.

7 people found this helpful

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Rip roaring storytelling at its best.

This is storytelling of the highest quality. Wins no awards for political correctness but scores highly for pleasure, humour and amusement.

5 people found this helpful

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Brilliant Fantastic a real ripper of a story

A true great autobiography of one the bravest men who made our British empire great !

3 people found this helpful

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My inner flashman...

New to the world of the mercurial Mr flashman..where have I been all this time??? grinning to myself on lonely train journeys to work on his adventures and miscomings. I am A very new fan to his ecacapes and wonder who he might tumble with or escape from next.

2 people found this helpful

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Brilliant!

excellent character, fantastic writing, great humour and you can't help but like the chap...scoundrel though he may be!

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Excellent book

Read this when I was young and listening again on audio years later it’s still as funny

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Massively enjoyed listening to Flashman.

A friend of mine advised me to listen to Flashman, I am more into flying adventures, but I have to admit, I loved it! He's a fantastic character and his adventures are fantastically read by Colin Mace! Very enjoyable!

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Cringe-worthy, but also funny

I haven't heard of Flashman before (I'm not British myself), so I was glad that there was a short Foreword by the author at the beginning which explained how the character came to life. Even though I was often cringing, and therefore decided to a take a couple of days break from Flashy, I kept returning to find out what this antihero was up to. He also made me laugh not once (shame on me), so overall it wasn't too bad. It's a satirical piece after all.

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Started off well, then went down down down

I like the idea that flashman is just this shallow, vain man with zero morals. but unfortunately it was poorly executed, with a plot that didn't seem to go anywhere. Colin Mace is just a bore as well. felt like I was listening to Peter v brett demon cycles. YAWN!!!

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  • Andrew Little
  • 18-03-18

What a fantastic listen

I don’t no what every body is going on about, complaining about Colin Mace. He was superb and really brought Flashman to life in my eye. Each to their own I suppose.

Great listen don’t let the other reviews put you off like it nearly made me do so glad I took a chance and it paid off

2 people found this helpful

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  • Thomas Herlofsen
  • 24-02-19

Fun, fabulously un-PC

All the worst parts of British culture hung out to dry. Satire on par with Yes, Minister, but far more salty. Spike Lee should make this into a TV show, the perfect picture of how we became so horrible in Europe. In a time when works of art are judged by the morality of the main character this is utterly irredeemable of course; a story of the Man, British colonial superiority, a cross between James Bond and Indiana Jones. Cheerfully racist and misogynist. Great naughty fun.

1 person found this helpful