|...excitingly told, moving, complex and rather challenging - about as far
away as it is possible to get from what one critic recently described as the
anaemic, fine-tuned, miniature pissing about of the British novel... the
novels defining characteristic are meticulous research and the weird objectivity
with which it treats the terrible things people are prepared to do to each other.
The Sunday Times.
|When I heard about the book, I had
just completed - for the final volume of my History of the
British Cavalry - the chapters on Allenbys, great, glorious
and gory campaign in Palestine. I thought therefore that, since
it purported to be set during that campaign, I had better glance
at it. The glance immediately developed into an absorbing read.
An expected chore became an exercise
in sheer pleasure.
What struck me as especially remarkable was the extraordinary degree to
which Mr Smiths extensive researches resulted in a complete absence of
solecisms and incongruities. He has captured marvellously well the atmosphere
as well as the reality of the Middle East in 1917. A mere historian can hardly
hope to compete... Numerous real-life characters - from T. E. Lawrence to the
female spy Sarah Aaronsohn - are depicted with understanding and accuracy. As
for the description of the famous Yeomanry charge at Raj, the climax of what
is a veritable espionage thriller, I defy any reader to control a rapid beating
of the heart.
Marquess of Anglesey, The Daily Telegraph.
|Few people are writing proper adventure
stories these days. Colin Smith has provided a really good
spy story set in Palestine in 1917... two Yeomanry regiments
will make the last real cavalry charge of the British army...
It is all tremendously exciting as we switch from the German/Turkish
forces in Jerusalem to the allies in Cairo... The battle scenes
The Sunday Telegraph.
| ... a rumbustious thriller-spy-war
story set in Palestine in 1917, culminating in the cavalry
charge by the Warwickshire and Worcestershire Yeomanry against
Austrian artillery. Smith has done a formidable amount of research
into a little remembered aspect of the First World War... his
wide panorama is
The Financial Times.
|A good read that gathers pace like the cavalry charge with which the action
The Independent on Sunday.
| ...an excellently researched and well written saga
of a stirring time in which the seeds of the Arab-Jewish conflict
Yorkshire Evening Post
|A well researched novel which,
quite apart from entertaining, gives a valuable insight into
some of the origins of the present Middle East
South Wales Argus.
|...weaves together the destiny
of Germans, Turks, Jews and the men of the Midlands in a vivid
and immensely readable work.
Wolverhampton Express and Star
| ...a work of fiction cleverly woven around a cast of
characters and historical events... a good read.
Coventry Evening Telegraph