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Brief Reviews
by George Kaufman

IT AS TEMPTINGTO say that they don`t make men like Gerald Clark any more. And,as sexist and old-fogeyish as that sounds in today`s world, it`s quitetrue. As Clark himself confirms in No Mud on the Back Seat: Memoirs of a Reporter (Robert Davies Publishing, 284 pages, $26.99 cloth), at onetime almost all the foreign correspondents were men, and cut from a verydifferent cloth from today`s CNN satellite heroes. Clark`s stories from five decades of reporting (mostlyfor the defunct Montreal Star) provide a highly enjoyable and endlessly informativehistory lesson. Many are based on his foreign assignments, from witnessing theGerman surrender in the Second World War to the Nuremberg Trials to travels in"Red China." Clark`s globe-trotting progress through thesecond half of our century is a dizzying whirl of images, personalities,places, and ideas. One minute we`re with him in Peking; the next we`re on ajet, and soon after careering at breakneck speed along dangerously narrow roadshigh in the Chilean Andes. Typically, Clark chafed at domestic "desk-bound"jobs back home in Canada, and worked constantly to be on the road again. Buteven his family life seemed destined to bring him fascinating stories ofpersonalities, such as when his sister married the intriguing General MorrisAbraham "Two Gun" Cohen. No Mud on the Back Seat is the kind of fast-paced,"you are there" read that`s hard to find these days, written by an insightfulreporter who loved what he was doing.

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