Revolution and Roses


The place of this novel P.H. Newby's tenth is Alexandria, its period the week leading up to King Farouk's abdication, its cast English, Greek and Egyptian, its action swift and exciting.

It begins with Eric Blainey's meeting with his half-brother Tim, just arrived from England. Eric is by now an old Alexandrian, married to Lydia, the daughter of Paulos Dragoumis, coffee merchant by profession, political philosopher by preference. He finds Tim in the company of a woman journalist, Elaine, who sees the revolutionary situation as a wonderful opportunity for her. The trouble is, she lacks an entry visa.

Eric, anxious to be helpful, tries to smuggle her and Tim ashore in a launch. On landing the party is arrested by Mahmoud Yehia, one of the revolutionary officers, who eases but simultaneously complicates matters by falling instantly in love with Elaine.

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