A TIME TO LAUGH by Laurence Thomspon


Email this review


A delightful and touching story revolves about the tenderhearted and unconventional son of a North African village chief who is fobbed off and eventually flunked out of the British Buna Service Corps. A perpetual misfit, Gadein exasperates his father with his seeming oafishness and the sweet patience which is at odds with the military life. A comedy of Service life, in which perplexed officers tangle conscientiously with Gadein's innocence and belief that the spirit world metes him rewards and punishments as he deserves them, is sympathetic to British and natives alike. The wily Musa capitalizes on Gadein's guilibility and achieves a court-martial for them both as a result of the money Gadein has found on a hill while overturning a truck -- no one will believe him. Heroic efforts by his chosen father, Bimbashi Courage, get Gadein out of detention camp and back to the hills, where he is accepted as a hero at second glance and partakes again of life as the spirits will. A minuet of thought motifs in which everyone is trying very hard to adapt to the other dancers' steps.

Pub Date: March 22nd, 1954
Publisher: Messner