His most famous character, Harry Paget Flashman, will live on but author George MacDonald Fraser, best known for resurrecting his literary anti-hero from a Victorian novel and chronicling his years of cowardice and vice, passed away January 2 of this new year at age 82. Fraser never sold movie rights and the dozen existing Flashman books may well be all we'll ever know.
Fraser's stories of Flashman's service in the British army are a politically incorrect survey of the late 19th century's hot spots. Based on "The Flashman Papers," the series was done so well that literally dozens of scholars have reviewed one book or another as factual - to the subsequent detriment of their reputations. It's one of the few times that a fictional liar, cheat and womanizer has been the center of so much attention, and Flashman's completely undeserved reputation for heroism means that his penchant for dereliction of duty is usually misinterpreted in his favor.
If you think you might enjoy a dose of tongue in cheek historical fiction and are unfamiliar with old Flashy, pick up a copy of Flashman at the Charge (1973), put on some music and sit down in your favorite chair with a glass of single malt. You'll be a while.