Archive for November, 2009

Book Review: Lost in Africa by Stu Taylor

Lost in Africa
Stu Taylor
Published by 30° South Publishers: Johannesburg
ISBN: 978-1920143-16-9

Stu Taylor, perhaps not surprisingly, is still living in Zimbabwe.  His book describes the life, abuse and hardships of a regular Rhodesian army soldier in the ranks and then Taylor’s struggle with civilian life, in newly independent Zimbabwe, after ‘de-mobbing’.  It is a somewhat capricious account, which many of his contemporaries will find both amusing and tragic as he reflects, in his own humble, often belittling way, a seemingly superfluous, sometimes bacchanal, existence entirely beyond his control.  Despite this he keeps soldiering on, facing hurdles and obstacles, which most mere mortals will never meet.  This is hardly a trumpet blowing account either, despite Taylor having served in the Rhodesian Light Infantry, a crack airborne unit, for thirteen years.  His stories of combat hardly scratch the surface of what it was really like in the thick of battle, yet he captures the hard knocks shared by so many of his ilk during war, political transition and a peace which never really endured.
Andrew Field
9 November 2009

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