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Pied Piper

Pied Piper

Nevil Shute is a now dead old-timey British author of wonderful, well-written, gripping, and generally but not always happy-face novels. His best-knowner is On the Beach, about an atomic bomb (not a “happy-face” one), but I haven’t read it, because my wife has and said I’d get bummed out. I have read many others, including these two. When it came out, the New York Times review said this of Pied Piper: “Pied Piper is the work of a master storyteller…It piles up dramatic force with quiet realism….A novel for more than one reading.” It takes place during WWII and is about an old guy (the Pied Piper) who tries to rescue children from the Nazis when they invaded France. I’m no war-book fan myself, but what a good book this is. You read contemporary novels but not this one? Read this one—it’s right up there with any. And here’s what the NYT said about the other Nevil Shute novel we have, The Breaking Wave: “An unadulterated delight….Only in the final pages is the riddle of Janet Prentice’s death solved. And at the last Shute leaves us with his own message of compassion tinged with bitterness.” It takes place just following WWII (I’m still not a war book guy, but…well, I also really liked Unbroken, a modern book about WWII hero Louis Zamperini, but still….not a war book guy in general)-----and is about a fighter pilot’s post-war life on a sheep farm in Australia. These books are cheap, just $15 each. If you read fiction or know somebody who does, they’ll get that much value out of them in the first two chapters. Nevil Shute is long gone, but there’s still a NS fan club raging on in England. He was quite a writer. Paperback.

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