Troubador Beyond the Blue Mountain

Released: 28/03/2021

ISBN: 9781800462090

eISBN: 9781800465923

Format: Paperback/eBook

Review this Book

Beyond the Blue Mountain

by

From the glaciers of Spitsbergen to the palaces of Oman, this is an unlikely journey by an unassuming Liverpool boy who spent much of his career rising, to his surprise, through MI6, when not indulging his passion for rock-climbing. It is both a memoir and travellers tale, ranging across many countries among a fascinating cast of characters, from well-known political figures to the shadowy denizens of his trade. Full of colour and incident, it is both funny and serious and always seen through the eye of an outsider who never quite felt he belonged.

Remarkable book, very interesting subject. A life well lived, I'd say. A daredevil until the end. Glad you have toned down the rock climbing.

Original review: https://www.netgalley.co.uk/book/228157/review/428366

by NetGalley review


Beyond the Blue Line by Alec McDonald
I found this a delightful book to read despite the fact this is not an espionage novel nor even a travelogue book per se. Mr. McDonald states at the beginning he did not pass this book through channels even though he worked for intelligence. After reading his book, I can understand why. The spy adventures are laughable and hard to understand the cost involved to do counter-espionage on McDonald.
Alec was born in 1930 and I believe as I write still alive which makes 91 years old. His passion rock and mountain climbing which he did all over the world and only stopped a few years ago.
Not a good student unless his back was against the wall, he somehow made it through Cambridge with a skill in languages. When not pretending to be a student he and a friend found ways to travel in France, Iceland and islands north of Norway on little or no money. Amazing!
His assignments in government included Greece, Caracas, Beirut, Benghazi, Tripoli and his last and I believed most enjoyed Oman. None of these places I believe are hot in the Cold War sense and yet he often relates how he was required to lose his Soviet minders when meeting a source. So many cars, disguises and people just to follow one man who was probably only going to get info that was available in the local newspaper.
And yet I found this book a good read and to Mr. McDonald; well done you on a life well lived and enjoyed.

Original review: https://www.netgalley.co.uk/book/228157/review/792162

by NetGalley review


Thoroughly enjoyable and easy to read. I found the insight into the different parts of the author's life all very interesting and a good trip through childhood to teenage years to student life and on into the most amazing adult existence. Packed full of moments, hilarious, poignant, terrifying - it has everything. It did rather make me feel I've wasted my life, but then if there are people out there packing this much in then maybe it's best if some of us take life a little more slowly and leave them to it!

Original review: https://www.netgalley.co.uk/book/228157/review/774266

by NetGalley review


Lovely memoir of a life well lived and wonderful to pass these memories to his family. Starting from boyhood and rock climbing, adventure travel, education, family, work, getting ready to slow down although still climbing. Really enjoyed the travel aspects and living in the different locations, fascinating stuff and what an amazing opportunity.

Original review: https://www.netgalley.co.uk/book/228157/review/775382

by NetGalley review


An easy and enjoyable read, the life of a working class Liverpool lad who, to his surpise, was recruited for M16. The book is part biography, part travel book, and works well because of that.

Original review: https://www.netgalley.co.uk/book/228157/review/274856

by NetGalley review


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