"There are many ways of not having a father". These are the opening words to the story of Maximilian Carden Despard, written by his youngest daughter, Annabelle, who felt like she knew him all to little. She pieced together the story of an officer, born in 1892, who achieved glory and honours in a dramatic action of Dover in 1917. A post-war accident forced him to abandon his career in the Royal Navy and in the Thirties he started a new life as a navel attache, at a time when there was another enemy to face. In Yugoslavia he was a significant mover behind the scenes in Bond-like exploits to hamper the German war-machine. His life was not all excitement and drama; there was pain, loss and sadness too. This he never showed, however. Annabelle's book is an affectionate portrait of a man of outstanding good humour and a great presence. 'Formidable' was one word used of him 'redoubtable' another. Annabelle Despard was born in 1943 when her father was stationed in Cardiff in preparation for the Normandy landings. She was brought up alternately in England and Norway and has spent her adult life in Norway.
In 1976 she moved to Kristiansand where she was an associate professor of British Studies at the University of Agder.
Publisher: Portal Books