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Michael Korda Unveils T. E. Lawrence

The classic 1962 film "Lawrence of Arabia" was the Hollywood version of T. E. Lawrence's story. Now, author Michael Korda's new biography, "Hero: The Life and Legend of Lawrence of Arabia," finds the real Lawrence (1888-1935), a compelling, complicated and history-making figure. His legacy includes his pivotal role, as a British army officer, in the Middle East's history, especially as a go-between during the Arab Revolt against Ottoman Turkish rule of 1916–18.

Though many books have been written about Lawrence, including his own "Seven Pillars of Wisdom," he has remained something of an enigma. Enter Korda, who has also written best-selling books about Dwight D. Eisenhower and The Battle of Britain, among other subjects. As he told NPR's Neil Conan earlier this month, Lawrence was "more than just a colorful character." Instead, Korda thinks Lawrence's understanding of the Middle East was unusually insightful. Korda described him as a "remarkable combination of a man of extraordinary modesty and humility, coupled with enormous arrogance and an absolutely uncanny ability to talk as an equal to generals, kings and presidents."

In its review of "Hero," The NY Times said Korda's "commentary is sagacious and valuable" and Publisher's Weekly wrote, "Korda's vivid portrait of Lawrence and his warring impulses captures the brilliance and charisma of this fascinating figure." Hear Michael Korda at Darien Library on December 2 at 7 p.m. when he describes his intriguing and elusive subject and the detective work it took to capture him. The event is free and books will be available for signing and purchase post-talk. For more information, visit the Library's website .

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