Patrick Leigh Fermor's Mani compellingly revealed a hidden world of Southern Greece and its past. Its northern counterpart takes the reader among Sarakatsan shepherds, the monasteries of Meteora and the villages of Krakora, among itinerant pedlars and beggars, and even tracks down at Missolonghi a pair of Byron's slippers.Roumeli is not on modern maps: it is the ancient name for the lands from the Bosphorus to the Adriatic and from Macedonia to the Gulf of Corinth. But it is the perfect, evocative name for the Greece that Fermor captures in writing that carries throughout his trademark vividness of description. But what is more, the pictures of people, traditions and landscapes that he creates on the page are imbued with an intimate understanding of Greece and its history.
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After his famous walk across Europe - recounted in A Time of Gifts and Between the Woods and the Water - Patrick Leigh Fermor lived and travelled in the Balkans and the Greek Archipelago. In the Second World War he joined the Irish Guards, became a liaison officer in Albania and fought in Greece and Crete - living disguised as a shepherd in the mountains for two years organising resistance activities. He was awarded the DSO and CBE, and a knighthood in the 2004 new Year Honours List.Review:
'A Book For... The Greek islands' * Justin Marozzi, Financial Times * Leigh Fermor is a writer's writer, a man whose prose is frequently and justifiably likened to poetry. He writes like an angel in other words -- and angels don't date * Justin Marozzi, Financial Times * 'Extraordinarily engaging . . . thanks to Leigh Fermor's ability to turn an insight into a telling phrase . . . a compelling story' * London Review of Books * Bringing the landscape alive as no other writer can, he uses his profound and eclectic understanding of cultures and peoples ... to paint vivid pictures - nobody has illuminated the geography of Europe better * Geographical Magazine * John Murray is doing the decent thing and reissuing all of Leigh Fermor's main books ... But what else would you expect from a publisher whose commitment to geography is such that for more than two centuries it has widened our understanding of the world? * Geographical Magazine * He is in the first flight of writers on Greece * The Times * A wandering scholar but with a difference: unlike the celebrated travellers of the past he has become part of the country he describes * Sunday Times * Marvellous... we are fortunate to have these unforgettable reports from the fields and the marshes, the peaks and the chasms, the taverns and the waterfronts of the Roumeli * Observer * A masterpiece softened by warm, human understanding * Sunday Times * Mani and Roumeli: two of the best travel books of the century * Financial Times *
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