This was a BEAST of a book. I mean a real beast and in the best possible use of that word. Over forty pages of notes, more than any book I’ve read. And I could have created many more. If you are insecure, do NOT read this book. I repeat, do NOT read this book.
I burn through most books in a few days, tops. This book took a month of dedicated time. Dense but so filled with interesting data that it never felt like a chore.
Where do I begin with Lawrence? “Hero, The Life and Legend of Lawrence of Arabia” by Michael Korda will forever remain on my top list. Let’s say you don’t give two s%$# about T.E. Lawrence. Okay, got it. This book is a history lesson, a photography lesson, a mapmaking lesson, a political lesson, an aviation lesson, and a lesson on many other things. I told you, I’m a dumbass. So just the detail about the unfoldings of WWI was enough for me to read this book. Especially from a non-American perspective.
We aren’t making people like Lawrence now. We aren’t. We are mostly a shallow body of water now. Lawrence was as deep, complicated and conflicted as the Pacific. There are over one hundred books about him. Not to mention films, docs, plays, etc. He is both revered and reviled.
My advice is to BUY this book. Get the hardcover. Get it, pass it around but write your name in it and make sure you hand it over ONLY with the threat of death if not returned.