Opening Sentence:Empire was Arnold’s lodestar.
Synopsis:Arnold Wienolt – MP, lion hunter and intelligence agent – was a larger-than-life action hero whose eccentricities were legendary. He once hired a circus tent when campaigning for parliament and offered to box all-comers in the ring. On his first hunting expedition to Africa he recklessly pursued a wounded lion and ended up scarred for life.
Schooled at Eton and on his family’s vast holdings in Queensland, Wienholt fought for Empire during the Boer War and was an early exponent of guerrilla warfare. Decorated for bravery in the First World War, he died in mysterious circumstances spying behind the lines in northern Africa in 1940.Ros Siemon’s engrossing tale has to read about to be believed.
Comments:This was a very interesting biography about a very interesting character in Australian history. From his role in the squattocracy to serving in Queensland’s Parliament; from hunting lions in Africa to serving in three wars (Boer War, WWI & WWII) and spying behind enemy lines; Arnold Wienholt certainly led a full and colourful life of adventure. Most of us are not brave enough to stand by our convictions in the face of almost total opposition and ridicule. Most of us are not brave enough to ‘walk the talk’. Most of us crave adventure from home but are not brave enough to pursue it. Arnold Wienholt did all of these things and more – he faced down his enemies with the courage and dignity he felt became a member of the Empire. Despite never having heard of Arnold Wienholt before, this book was an absolutely riveting read.
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