A delightful book of memoir from one of Britain's most beloved journalists One of Evelyn Waugh's most popular novels is SCOOP. It is an exuberant, hilarious comedy of mistaken identity and a brilliant satire on Fleet Street and its relentless and hectic pursuit of hot news set during the Italo-Ethiopian War of 1936. It tells the story of William Boot, a nature journalist mistakenly dispatched to cover a foreign war, and finding himself deep in the middle of danger and political absurdity. Unknown to many, the story is based on the true exploits of one Bill Deedes, upon whom Waugh based Boot, and here for the first time Deedes tells the real story of his adventures in Abyssinia in the 1930s, in his own unique and hilarious way. It is a story of amateurish bungles and almost Pythonesque incongruities. If we look at the memoirs of war correspondents such as John Simpason and Max Hastings, not much as changed in the ensuing years.
Bill Deedes is the only person ever to have been both a Cabinet Minister and a National Newspaper Editor. He was a minister in Harold Macmillan's administration and later became Editor of the Daily Telegraph. He appears on television and radio frequently and has recently run high profile anti-landmine campaigns. He is 88 years old and is the author of Dear Bill, his Fleet Street memoirs published in Pan.