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The Last Hero [Audio Cassette]

Terry Pratchett , Stephen Briggs
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

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Book Description

February 2004
As America prepares to enter World War II, a group of spies from the Office of Strategic Service is deployed around the world to do the work that could possibly change the entire outcome of the war, such as securing the secrets to the atomic bomb."
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

Product Description

From Kirkus Reviews

First hardcover edition of a volume from a paperback series, on the OSS in WW II, that the ever-popular Griffin (Blood and Honor, 1997, etc.) published pseudonymously (in 1985) as Alex Baldwin. In mid-1941, fun-loving Richard Canidy and straight-arrow Edwin Bitter are hotshot pilot instructors at the Navy's air station in Pensacola. With minimal prompting, they soon volunteer to serve with the so-called Flying Tigers. Before heading off (on a slow boat) to China, however, these two well-connected friends find time to join the social whirl in Washington, where crafty FDR has detailed Wild Bill Donovan to create an Office of Strategic Services. Shortly after arriving in Southeast Asia, Dick becomes an ace, downing five Japanese planes in a single sortie. The very same day, he's whisked away on orders from the White House. Meantime, the US (now at war against the Axis powers) plans to build an atomic bomb but lacks a secure source of uraninite. Which is where Dick comes in. His prep-school chum Eric Fulmar (the son of an American film actress and a German industrialist) is dodging the draft boards of both nations by hiding out in North Africa. Operating under cover from the US Embassy in Morocco, Dick is to enlist the aid of Fulmar in abducting a French mining engineer with badly needed information on a vital ore cache in the Belgian Congo. To make the mission more challenging, the amateur agents must carry out their assignment on a split-second schedule (to make an offshore rendezvous with a submarine) and get their man away without arousing the suspicions of either the Nazi or Vichy forces controlling the Maghreb coast. A rousing to-the-ends-of-the-earth start for an absorbing narrative takeout on the shadow warriors who handled some decidedly odd jobs in aid of the Allied cause. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

W.E.B. Griffin is the author of six bestselling series.
--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars More or less what happened Aug. 9 2010
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book, though fiction, is more or less what happened during WW2, with regard to Pearl Harbor, and the background to the Manhattan project. The often hidden hand of the OSS's William Donovan is seen to inform all sorts of ostensibly unrelated parts of the plot.

The writer has seen fit to interlace the basic plot - or, in his inimitable style - the various concurrent plots - with racy elements which were presumably deemed to make the whole sell better (although these are probably not too wide of the mark, either).

The writer has an almost Katherine Mansfield flair for keeping the reader suspended in anticipation, wondering where the next part will lead...and then it doesn't.

More seriously, the work can to some extent teach an often insular North American readership the vital necessity of strategic analysis and the integration of the US economy with the commerce and politics of raw materials.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Boring, misleading, too long, & anticlimatic June 11 2004
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The last heroes is not what the back cover implies it is: a WWII action/spy book. It turns out to be the total opposite. A big bore. I agree with a previous reviewer's comments about too much intimate encounters of the main characters. Oh, and way too many characters' names to keep track of. 80% of them non-essential to plot. Affairs and adultery run amuck. The actual main mission doesn't start until around page 350 and last for about 20 pages. I also realize that setting up a mission of that sort requires a lot of preparatory work, but this was ridiculous. The book runs 384 pages and 75% of it is wasted on establishing the 2 first main characters absurd and imature personalites. As some might know, it a Men At War series of books, which I will not continue to follow. Save yourself some time and read something better and real, like To Hell And Back or Beyond Valor.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable action adventure. March 19 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A friend tipped me off to WEB Griffin and I started off with his "Men At War" series, but out of order. This being the kickoff to the series, it came up as my second read.
Therefore, it was most interesting to get the complete back-story on the principle fictional characters. It certainly puts a more proper perspective on chapter two ("Secret Warriorts").
I particularly enjoyed the mixing of actual events and real people from the WWII era with the fictional characters. It gives a greater feeling of reality and you feel part of the action.
The series revolves around the founding and early days of the OSS...and our quest to beat the Axis powers in the race to develop the Atomic Bomb. Here we experience the setup to covertly attain the uranium necessary to complete the task.
The primary fictional characters are remarkably portrayed in a way that would make Errol Flynn, John Wayne and Tyrone Power proud. The action and plot flow smoothly and the book is great fun.
The characters are truly well developed and you feel an intimacy with many of them. You want them to show up in the next book in the series. Mr. Griffin does a good job of getting you to care about the players and to cheer for them all the way.
I am thankful to my friend for this recommendation and plan to read plenty more WEB Griffin.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good read, but . . . Dec 21 1999
Griffin has been one of my favorite authors for over ten years, and I've read other books of the same genre. One thing to note about this particular series is that the books were all written over a decade ago (under a psuedonym), but the publisher is promoting the books as "new" now that Griffin is revealed as the author. Still, an enjoyable window into the formation of the OSS/CIA -- before it was corrupted in its mission in the Fifties.
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By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The first 4 tapes of the book were GREAT! Tell me how to get the last half?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Work.... Sept. 4 1999
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I started reading and was skeptical, then by the time I was finished I was wishing I was Canidy.. Great Job, can't wait to start on next book.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Soap opera trash and an insult to WWII Vets Aug. 31 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This wasn't about WWII. It was about guys trying to get laid and make some cash. How could anyone write about WWII and mess it up? The main characters didn't get into warfare till 2/3 of the book. And believe me it wasn't anything worth talking about. I was waiting for something some great war story to happen and it never happened. There was no build up of anything. WWII is one of the most powerful wars you could write about and this book was not anywhere near the subject.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Weak and disappointing July 20 1999
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
As a fan of W.E.B. Griffin, I found THE LAST HEROS to be disappointing. It is supposed to be about the Manhattan Project. In fact it isn't a novel, it is just the introductory chapter of a novel-a very long introduction, with an intriguing premise, but it really doesn't get beyond that. I found the "romance" to be a shallow distraction. Apparently, Mr. Griffin had an idea for a novel, which he planned to milk into a series. Replace "milk" with "water down". Sorry, no more from me. Instead I'll re-read the Brotherhood Series.
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