Last Days in Old Europe

by Richard Bassett

£9.99


Reserve a copy

×

Reserve a copy

Reserve a copy of Last Days in Old Europe for collection at the Marlow Bookshop. If you provide your email address below, we will contact you when this item is ready for collection. For delivery by post add the address to the order notes and we will be in touch to arrange payment.

Non Fiction

Paperback

9780141979991

In 1979 Richard Bassett set out on a series of adventures and encounters in central Europe which allowed him to savour the last embers of the cosmopolitan old Hapsburg lands and gave him a ringside seat at the fall of another ancien regime, that of communist rule. From Trieste to Prague and Vienna to Warsaw, fading aristocrats, charming gangsters, fractious diplomats and glamorous informants provided him with an unexpected counterpoint to the austerities of life along the Iron Curtain, first as a professional musician and then as a foreign correspondent.

The book shows us familiar events and places from unusual vantage points: dilapidated mansions and boarding-houses, train carriages and cafes, where the game of espionage between east and west is often set. There are unexpected encounters with Shirley Temple, Fitzroy Maclean, Lech Walesa and the last Empress of Austria. Bassett finds himself at the funeral of King Nicola of Montenegro in Cetinje, plays bridge with the last man alive to have been decorated by the Austrian Emperor Franz-Josef and watches the KGB representative in Prague bestowing the last rites on the Soviet empire in Europe.

Music and painting, architecture and landscape, food and wine, friendship and history run through the book. The author is lucky, observant and leans romantically towards the values of an older age. He brilliantly conjures the time, the people he meets, and Mitteleuropa in one of the pivotal decades of its history.

Real Estate by Deborah Levy | 9780241268018

Real Estate

Deborah Levy

£10.99

How Not To Be Wrong by James O'Brien | 9780753557716

How Not To Be Wrong

James O'Brien

£9.99

Prisoners of History by Keith Lowe | 9780008339586

Prisoners of History

Keith Lowe

£9.99

The Chiffon Trenches by André Leon Talley | 9780008342371

The Chiffon Trenches

André Leon Talley

£9.99

Notes on Grief by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie | 9780008470302

Notes on Grief

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

£10.00

Operation Pedestal by Max Hastings | 9780008364946

Operation Pedestal

Max Hastings

£25.00