Saturday, September 21, 2013


There are certain historical figures that always seem to fascinate. Books continue to be written about them and movies of their lives always find a big audience.  Abraham Lincoln immediately comes to mind as one of those fascinating people.

Another is T.E. Lawrence, the mysterious British army officer who went to the Arabian Peninsula during World War I and helped fight the occupying forces of the Ottoman Empire.  He became known as the legendary Lawrence of Arabia. 

Monrovia Library owns the DVD of the Academy Award winning 1962 movie Lawrence of Arabia.  Starring Peter O’Toole, Omar Sharif and a cast of famous English actors, this British epic won 7 Oscars and is just as exciting to watch as it was 50 years ago. 

 On the library shelves are 9 books about T.E. Lawrence. One of the most interesting is With Lawrence in Arabia written by the reporter Lowell Thomas and published in 1924.  It was Thomas who really brought the enigmatic Lawrence to the attention of the world, not just by writing the book, but also through filmed interviews which were shown in movie theaters of the day. The newest book is Lawrence in Arabia:  War Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East.  Written by Scott Anderson and just published in August 2013, the book is an impeccably researched history of Lawrence and is just as epic as the movie.  

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