Ensiform's Reviews > Flash for Freedom

Flash for Freedom by George MacDonald Fraser
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Jan 29, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: fiction, historical
Read 2 times. Last read November 18, 2003.

Accused (falsely, amazingly enough) of cheating in a friendly game of cards, Flashy injures the accuser in a rage. His reputation damaged, Flash joins a ship’s crew until the scandal cools down – only to realize to his horror (his own neck being on the line, of course) that it’s a slave ship. Here begin Flashy’s adventures on the high seas and America, where at various times he is dragooned and bluffs his way into nearly every role concerning the slave trade: buyer, trader, seller, driver on a plantation, underground railroad smuggler, anti-slavery double agent, almost even a slave himself at one point.

It’s all tremendous stuff, full of the usual (on Fraser’s part) erudition and wit and (on Flashy’s part) lechery, as well as, of course, the historical tweaking: Flashman meets a young Disraeli, a young Lincoln, and even serves as the inspiration for Harriet Beecher Stowe’s famous book. Superb historical parody, historical fiction, and pure entertainment all in one. Oh, a final thought: Flashy’s definitely gotten a lot braver since the first book. Scared or not, it takes guts to pull a gun on a killer, or even keep one’s wits enough to play-act in the face of danger. That’s most likely a good thing, of course; as a reader, one can take only so much helpless, quivering terror from the narrator.

[Read twice]
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
1992 – Finished Reading
Started Reading
November 18, 2003 – Finished Reading
January 29, 2012 – Shelved
January 29, 2012 – Shelved as: fiction
January 29, 2012 – Shelved as: historical

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