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Peter Hopkirk (1930–2014)

Author of The Great Game: On Secret Service in High Asia

9+ Works 3,982 Members 75 Reviews 14 Favorited

About the Author

Peter Hopkirk has traveled widely over many years in Central Asia, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, and the Middle East as writer

Includes the names: Peter Hopkirk, Hoppkirk Peter

Works by Peter Hopkirk

Associated Works

My Journey to Lhasa (1927) — Introduction, some editions — 613 copies
Mission to Tashkent (1983) — Introduction, some editions — 281 copies
My Life as an Explorer (1925) — New Prologue and Epilogue, some editions — 227 copies
A Ride to Khiva (1876) — Introduction, some editions — 171 copies
On Horseback through Asia Minor (1985) — Introduction, some editions — 79 copies
Hunted through Central Asia: On the Run from Lenin's Secret Police (1933) — Introduction, some editions — 64 copies
Buried Treasures of Chinese Turkestan (1974) — Introduction, some editions — 36 copies
Journey to Turkistan (1937) — Introduction, some editions — 26 copies
The Worst Desert on Earth: Crossing The Taklamakan (1995) — Foreword, some editions — 23 copies


Common Knowledge

Date of death
Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England, UK
The Dragon School, Oxford
Marlborough College
Hopkirk, Kathleen (wife)
King's African Rifles
The Times
Daily Express
Awards and honors
Sir Percy Sykes Memorial Medal (1999)
Short biography
Before turning full-time author, he was an ITN reporter and newscaster for two years, the New York correspondent of Lord Beaverbrook's Daily Express, and then worked for nearly twenty years on The Times; five as its chief reporter, and latterly as a Middle East and Far East specialist. In the 1950s, he edited the West African news magazine Drum, sister paper to its legendary South African namesake. Before entering Fleet Street, he served as a subaltern in the King's African Rifles – in the same battalion as Lance-Corporal Idi Amin, later to emerge as the Ugandan tyrant.



True stories spanning 100 years in central Asia with each chapter reading like a new Indiana Jones epic adventure; great insight into the 1800's and the lives of the people in this era.
dlinnen | 36 other reviews | Feb 3, 2024 |
This is a very interesting book about a geographical area that was and still is sort of a powderkeg best left alone. Of course, as current politics shows us that cannot happen due to the area's strategic position. World powers keep stirring up mayhem in this highly unstable area.

Although focus is on attempts of Bolsheviks to bring the revolution to the East - East being nearest to the what was then Tsarist Russia taken by Bolsheviks - Hopkirk draws a very vivid picture of Bolsheviks, Tsarist Whites, British, China, Afghanistan and other forces - local or international fighting to keep their foothold in the area during the 1910-1920's periods and not holding up in any way - massacres of thousands are common thing and it seems that power cannot be obtained or retaken without enormous price in human life.

Highly recommended, writers style is excellent and you wont be able to put down the book until you get to the very last page.
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Zare | 7 other reviews | Jan 23, 2024 |
This book focuses on a very specific portion of two countries' (Russia and Great Britain) empire building manuevers ("The Great Game"); and in what ways they tried to race to control the Central Asian areas and how they tried to outmaneuver each other. I had mistakenly thought this book was a broad history of the British in India. I did finish the book, but I certainly did not enjoy it. I would only recommend it to those specifically interested in that geographical area and specific period of time, and learning all they can about the Russian and British "Great Game" in particular. It is devoid of many historical backgrounds and biographical information and made for dry reading. It is more a very lengthy timeline of actions of Russian and British "players" against various Asian cities and rulers and a neverending list of the battles and skirmishes. At times some of the bloodbaths are depicted with some gruesome details.

The book was extremely biased in favor of the British, even though the Russians were supposed to be a co-player. They were definitely overshadowed with the author's glowing rendition of the British heroes and exploits. Worse yet was the consistent derogatory terms used to depict the local population whose land British and Russia were busily invading and claiming, as barbaric, uncivilized, savage, etc. The Western Civilization rhetoric and narrative was heavy and disturbing. The book certainly does lay a groundwork of how we have ended up where we are today and the catastrophic events going on in the world
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shirfire218 | 36 other reviews | Nov 17, 2023 |
Like Hidden Fire is an adventure novel as non-fiction. Covering the German and Turkish plans to carve out empires in central Asia during World War I and the return to the Great Game of nineteenth century.

As ever, Hopkirk covers the machinations of the varying nations; the Turks, the Germans, the Russian Empire, the Russian Bolsheviks, the myriad tribesmen of central Asia and the Brits. Obviously the British soldiers at the heart of the story are the heroes and everyone else, including the Indians who only wanted the British to leave them alone.

I have greatly enjoyed all of Hopkirk's books and my only regret is that I have now read all of them.
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MiaCulpa | 6 other reviews | Feb 23, 2022 |



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