The Tiger of Dien Bien Phu
by Richard A. M. Dixon
Merriam Press Historical Fiction
eBook not available
Paperback - ISBN 978-1576385043 - $12.95
Hardcover not available
Out of the turbulent last decades of French Indo-China, emerges an antihero, larger than life. He is Claude Lellange, product of a mixed marriage between a French senior officer, Colonel Henri Lellange and a Vietnamese woman, Claude fights his way up from enlisted ranks to officer in the airborne forces of the Foreign Legion. His heroic exploits and his ferocity in many combat actions, leading to the final battle at Dien Bien Phu, cause him to be cited as The Tiger of Dien Bien Phu.
Raised as a Eurasian in a world where he suffers rejection among French and Asian alike, He grows quickly to manhood and learns to be self sufficient unto himself.
The story covers his adventures throughout Southeast Asia, a two year sojourn in North Africa and the Sahara Desert, and a career as a paratrooper in the Foreign Legion. Though he fights with the fury of a tiger his military career ends with the battle of Dien Bien Phu and the finish of French dominance in Indo-China.
Claude returns to North Africa and builds a new career as a paid assassin.
History buffs will enjoy this historical adventure tale and imaginary look into the turbulent years of French colonialism during the period 1932-54 and its ties to the American involvement in South Vietnam.
For those who love adventure, this is the adventure of a lifetime.
For those who enjoy romance, there is that, too.
He finds solace in his family and flees to North Africa with his father to escape the Japanese invasion of Vietnam. In French Morocco he is kidnapped by Berbers and taken into the Sahara Desert where he escapes and nearly succumbs to death by thirst and exposure, but is rescued by a passing salt caravan bound for Timbuktu. Claude spends more than two years in the desert where his bravery wins for him an Arabian stallion and the love of a young slave girl.
Rejoining his father at the end of World War II, They return to Hanoi together and are reunited with Claude’s mother. At the age of sixteen Claude joins the French Army and becomes a legionnaire paratrooper, meets and marries a Vietnamese girl, and fathers a daughter. As the situation deteriorates under continued attacks by the communist forces under Ho Chi Minh, Claude’s wife and daughter go to Haiphong to live with his mother. Haiphong is shelled and the entire family, except Claude and his father, is killed.
Henri dies at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu and Claude is captured at the final French surrender, but escapes to Laos and makes his way to Algiers where he musters out of the legion and becomes an assassin, a killer for hire. He has many adventures in Algiers and Casablanca, is reunited with his first love and his Arabian stallion, before his is forced to flee once again by revolution in Algeria and Morocco. Claude escapes to Bangkok where he goes to work for the American CIA.
266 6x9-inch pages, 3 maps
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