Born in Liverpool, he lived in Ireland from 1953, but spent many years in Africa, India and the Middle East, as a rancher and soldier, among other roles. His novels have been translated into many languages, and have been used in school texts in Africa. Novels include The Consul at Sunset (1951); The Year of the Lion; Drinkers of Darkness; The Journey Homeward, Gilligan's Last Elephant and See you in Yasukuni. He published short stories in various journals from 1938-41. He also worked in film, writing the script for The Blue Max. His memoirs have been published as Warriors and Strangers.
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