Alexander McCall Smith, best-selling author of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, has turned his hand to humour. The delightful result is a creation of comic genius. For in the unnaturally tall form of Professor Doctor Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, we are invited to meet a memorable character whose sublime insouciance is a blend of the cultivated pomposity of Frasier Crane and of Inspecteur Clouseau's hapless gaucherie. Von Igelfeld inhabits the rarefied world of the Institute of Romance Philology at Regensburg, a world he shares with his equally tall and equally ridiculous colleagues, Professors Florianus Prinzel and Detlev Amadeus Unterholzer. Their unlikely adventures are described in three deliciously funny instalments: Portuguese Irregular Verbs, The Finer Points of Sausage Dogs and At the Villa of Reduced Circumstances.
Welcome to the extraordinary world of Professor Dr. Moritz-Maria von Igelfeld, an unnaturally tall and memorable character whose sublime insouciance is a blend of the cultivated pomposity of Frasier Crane and Inspector Clouseau’s hapless gaucherie. The complete exploits of this unlikely adventurer are delightfully captured in The 21⁄2 Pillars of Wisdom.
What is it about Arabia and her people that has exercised such a powerful allure on generations of English travellers and explorers? ""A land whose name could evoke haunting echoes of the unconscious ... a country of the mind more real than any place on a map"" had, by the Victorian era, become a deep and lasting obsession for some of the greatest writers and explorers of the time. Here are the stories of some of those men, iconic figures like T.E. Lawrence and Richard Burton, whose extraordinary relationships with and explorations of Arabia changed the way we now perceive the Arab world and formed the basis of the West’s understanding of the region. Riveting and beautifully-portrayed, Heart Beguiling Araby reveals how these ultimately lonely figures pushed themselves to the limits of physical and mental endurance, surviving and prevailing in a land that had captivated them, thus binding their legends to its sweeping deserts and ancient tribes for generations to come.