Lawrence was both masochist and misogynist, a constant creator of myths and mysteries about himself. Yet this tormented, physically unimpressive man was also one of the authentic heroes of the twentieth century. Most biographers have been content either to glorify or to debunk, but Arabist and desert explorer Michael Asher has re-examined all the evidence to reveal a totally credible mixture of strength and weakness, self-glorification and real achievement.
'Asher's Lawrence is neither a driven visionary nor a great man, but one who had the right talents for an awfully big adventure. That adventure is Asher's subject... the core of his book is a lucid, fast-paced account of Lawrence's war... the story he has to tell is irresistibly stirring.'
Lucy Hughes-Hallet, Sunday Times
T E Lawrence is one of the great 20th-century English military heroes - the modest clerk who became Lawrence of Arabia, leading the Arabs to freedom from Turkish domination; the first true guerrilla fighter who also wrote at least one literary classic - The Seven Pillars of Wisdom. Asher tells his story forcefully and well but also explores the inner Lawrence: a masochist terrified of pain, but seeking and overcoming it; a homosexual trapped by the conventions of the time; a selfless man of great personal vanity. By far the best of a considerable number of attempts to understand the man. (Kirkus UK)