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The Zeppelin's Passenger Paperback – February 6, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Edward Phillips Oppenheim (October 22, 1866-February 3, 1946) was born in London, the son of a leather merchant. He was a successful novelist, with more than 150 novels published. Most of these were in the suspense and international intrigue genres, though he also wrote romances and comedies. He is credited with writing the first modern spy novels. His most famous work is The Great Impersonation which was three times made into a film. During World War I he worked in the Ministry of Information. He died at his home on the isle of Guernsey. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 198 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (February 6, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1482373165
  • ISBN-13: 978-1482373165
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By @CrimeQueen2 on February 20, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This war thriller was published in the U. S. in 1918 (the English edition was published in 1919 under the title Mr Lessingham Goes Home). Since the Armistice was not declared until November 1918, we can deduce that Oppenheim wrote the novel while Britain was still embroiled in World War I. Germany was using the zeppelins of the title to bomb London, but as the book opens one of these dirigibles crashes in the English countryside.

Its passenger, Baron Maderstrom, finds refuge in an English country house. He brings Lady Cranston news of her brother, a prisoner of war in Germany whose release he promises to secure. On the point of denouncing him as a spy, Lady Cranston is persuaded to harbor the Baron by her brother's fiance, Helen Fairclough, and to pass him off as an English houseguest going under the name of Hamar Lessingham.

These three main characters are soon joined on stage by Phillipa Cranston's husband. Once a devoted spouse, Sir Richard Cranston is now regarded by his wife as a slacker who is not doing his part in the war effort. The heroine's ability to simultaneously despise her unpatriotic husband while concealing a German spy from the authorities who are searching for him is only one of many implausible plot contrivances the reader must swallow. Some of Oppenheim's thrillers are quite readable depictions of espionage activities, but The Zeppelin's Passenger is simply incredible. The last section of the book, should the reader persevere, jumps the shark even further.

As always with Oppenheim's novels, the writing is literate, and the male characters are boldly drawn. The women are not so deftly sketched--something Oppenheim had in common with other male authors of the time. The plot is so contrived that there is a certain pleasure in seeing what weird twists the author can devise. The price is right, so if you want to dip into a trifle from the Downton Abbey period, why not try it?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mysann on March 31, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoy Oppenheim's novels for their espionage elements and period flair. I derived some pleasure from this one but it is not a favorite. I don't object to the fantastical story line as most of his books have that. My problem was in wanting to slap the so-called heroine. The author often makes his women too bizarre but Phillipa is beyond belief. Henry would be better off without the stupid ditz! Still it was free :)
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By drkhimxz on April 30, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Oppenheim was a big name in his day although I do not remember his reputation surviving to his death in the mid-1940's. At any rate, I cannot remember having read him when I was a young avid mystery reader.
Presumably, with suitable modification, this could have been made into an acceptable silent film with a female co-star who could play a beautiful but dumb role. In brief, a German spy drops onto a British estate from a zeppelin, with news of the captured brother of the heroine and sweetheart of the chief supporting female. He had been a friend at University of the prisoner and brought word that he was receiving good treatment which would continue if they helped him in his mission. Overjoyed both females agreed to harbor him since, after all, there was nothing of military value in the area. From this fantastic beginning it is all downhill, made acceptable in our hypothetical movie, only because we would know that the familiar star would never 'really' do wrong. In the book, there is no such mitigating circumstance.
I found the story almost unreadable, not because of poor writing, but due to the silly plot and primitive female characterizations. from about one-third of the book I skimmed to the end.
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By Tom Frank on August 26, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The works of this particular author are long out of print and difficult to come by. This company is providing an excellent service by making such rare gems available once again.
This is one of the best novels this author produced and I am very glad to have received it to add to my collection.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This WWI-set story is quick, compactly told, and features a few twists to keep the reader guessing to the end.

The ebook formatting is pretty good, with a few typos resulting from the OCR, but nothing too distracting.
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