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My Friend the Mercenary by James Brabazon

My Friend the Mercenary

Biography / Autobiography   Books for the Boys   The Real World   eBook Favourites   
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The fascinating, true-life inside story of a journalist caught up in the chaos and danger of African politics. Brabazon befriends a South African mercenary soldier and finds himself on the inside of the widely-reported and infamous failed military coup of Equatorial Guinea in 2004.This book skillfully and dramatically describes a life that seems so set apart from the Western world that it cannot be real. Yet, for so many Africans, this is their world and, to them, oh so real. Finally, is Simon Mann a hero or villain? Read this book and judge for yourself. You'll find it much more enjoyable than Googling him!

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My Friend the Mercenary by James Brabazon

He wanted a war. And, for his sins, he got one. James Brabazon was an ambitious young war reporter when he entered the chaos of the Liberian Civil War in 2002. Running with the infamous LURD rebels, he survived numerous deadly ambushes and a dramatic two-hundred-mile escape from Government troops through dense equatorial jungle. He even had a bounty put on his head. Surrounded by child soldiers, cannibals and ruthless rebels, Brabazon was accompanied by Nick du Toit, a South African mercenary with a dangerous past. Before long, Nick promised James the scoop of his life: a front seat, beside Simon Mann, in an audacious coup attempt in Equatorial Guinea. And the offer was too good to refuse.


An outstanding memoir about the power of friendship in the morally complex theatre of war. James Brabazon is a fearless reporter and a brutally honest narrator. I couldn't put this book down.' - Andy McNab

'James Brabazon has written a fully-adrenalized book about civil war, mercenaries and the tiny margins by which fate determines the course of one's life. He is not only a beautiful writer but an incredibly brave reporter, and this book reflects both brilliantly. I was also in the Liberian civil war in 2003 - on the other side - and I remember hearing that there was this crazy Brit who was running with the rebels as they advanced on the capital. Brabazon's account of an attempted coup by friends of his in Equatorial Guinea is a classic story of intrigue, greed and violence in one of the most dysfunctional countries in the world.' - Sebastian Junger

'Compelling.' - Sunday Times

'Intriguing.' - Spectator

About the Author

James Brabazon

James Brabazon is an award-winning frontline journalist and documentary filmmaker. Based in London, he has reported in over sixty countries, investigating, filming and directing in the world's most hostile environments. His awards include the Rory Peck Trust International Impact Award 2003, the Rory Peck Freelancer's Choice Award 2003, the IDA Courage Under Fire Award 2004 and the IDFA Joris Ivens Competition Special Jury Award 2004. He has also been nominated for two BAFTAs and two EMMYs. He has made thirty international current affairs films broadcast by the BBC, Channel 4, CNN, SABC and the Discovery Channel. He lectures on the ethics and practicalities of journalism in war zones and has written for the Observer, the Independent and the Guardian.

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Book Info

Publication date

16th June 2011


James Brabazon

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Canongate Books Ltd


496 pages


Biography / Autobiography
Books for the Boys
The Real World
eBook Favourites

True stories
Revolutions, uprisings, rebellions
African history
21st century history: from c 2000 -



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