Mimi and Toutou Go Forth

Mimi and Toutou Go Forth : The Bizzare Battle of Lake Tanganyika

3.61 (254 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Hardback

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"It's the duty of the Royal Navy to engage the enemy wherever she is afloat" is the order of the day, but their lordships would never have imagined what they would be letting themselves into when they sent Lt. Spicer Simson and his ragtag expedition to sink three German Steamers on Lake Tanganyika in central Africa. Spicer Simon, when he wasn't AWOL, would perform ritual baths for his African bearers, who quickly christened him Lord Belly Cloth. Fitzcarraldo meets Heart of Darkness, this is rich, vivid and flashmanesque in its appeal - military history at its most absorbing and entertainingshow more

Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 144 x 216 x 34mm | 521.63g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • Michael Joseph Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 0718145550
  • 9780718145552

Author information

Giles Foden grew up in Africa and was an assistant editor at the Times Literary Supplement for three years before joining the Guardian. He won the 1998 Whitbread First Novel Award for The Last King of Scotland.show more

Review Text

The plan was simple - if two British motor boats could be sent to South Africa, up the railway to the Belgian Congo and dragged through mountains and bush to Lake Tanganyika, they could disable the German naval presence and gain strategic control of the longest lake in the world. Who better to lead such an audacious expedition than Geoffrey Spicer-Simson, a man known for sporting lurid tattoos, telling bad jokes and singing off key, a braggart and unashamed eccentric, with a disastrous reputation thrown in for good measure? In June 1915 twenty-eight men set off with HMS Mimi and HMS Toutou in tow, their sights firmly set on success and glory. What awaited them was the mighty Graf von Gotzen, Germany's secret "supership". Giles Foden has unearthed an intriguing true story - with the most incredible characters and an exotic backdrop - and retells it with great gusto, humour and panache. (Kirkus UK)show more

Rating details

254 ratings
3.61 out of 5 stars
5 15% (38)
4 46% (116)
3 28% (72)
2 8% (20)
1 3% (8)
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