Richard's Feet

Carey Harrison, Author Henry Holt & Company $0 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8050-1404-4
Richard Thurgo is a voyeur of life, a Cornish cad masquerading for 20 years as an ex-Nazi in postwar Hamburg after a jeep crash in Spain incongruously gives him another man's identity. As garrulous narrator of this long, sprawling debut novel by British playwright Harrison (the son of Sir Rex Harrison and Lilli Palmer), Thurgo holds the reader spellbound through his insinuating tone of voice, his exultant love of language and sheer storytelling power. The plot begins in the late 1930s when Richard, just 18, falls for proud, larky, obstinate Maggie Trimble; also wooing her is his aristocratic German friend Peter von Lutzow, who will join an abortive conspiracy to assassinate Hitler. After flying an RAF balloon in WW II, Richard abandons his wife and son, who presume him dead in the jeep crash (they receive his ``feet'' to bury); gets mixed up with notorious double agent Kim Philby in flushing out neo-Nazis, and has a chaste romance with a German Jewess seeking revenge for her father's death. In its surprise twists and turns, this astonishing, affecting, rich novel mirrors the dislocations of our century. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-8041-0896-6
Paperback - 678 pages - 978-1-945766-02-2
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