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Burt was a syndicated Broadway columnist in New York until he and his late wife, Jane, met and became best friends with Sammy Davis, Jr. and together they wrote Sammy's internationally Best Selling autobiography, YES I CAN. The NY Herald Tribune critic, Maurice Dolbier,called it "One of the most candid, engrossing and important American autobiographies of our time." And Brothers Judd-Audible.com wrote, "..one of the really great autobiographies ever written."
Jane and Burt rented a beach house in Marbella, Spain for 9 months and stayed for 28 years, giving up a rent-controlled apartment on Park Avenue in New York. They traveled the world for two years with the greatest tennis players of the time, Rod Laver, Ken Rosewall, etc and wrote the novel WORLD CLASS based on the dynamics of the world class athlete. Then, with Sammy, they wrote WHY ME? a sequel to YES I CAN. And, as a result of living in Spain for so long, in a house owned by General Franco's daughter, they wrote the historically valuable HITLER STOPPED BY FRANCO. After Jane's passing of a heart attack in her sleep Burt returned home to the U.S and settled in Los Angeles.
on March 05, 2013 :
Nothing Less Than Superb
Burt Boyar and his late wife had extraordinary access to intimate details of an obscure piece of World War II history. Most Americans' view of Generalísimo Franco is of an implacable Fascist dictator who ran Spain with an iron hand for nearly forty years. That may be true enough, but "Hitler Stopped by Franco" shows us that he had another facet. Imagine being the supreme leader of civil war torn, impoverished and helpless Spain with divisions of Wehrmacht amour parked on your border and Hitler continually whining, cajoling and demanding access to Gibraltar through your sovereign territory. With Spain totally defenseless, Franco had to play the ultimate cat and mouse game. He had to convince Hitler of his friendship, and that he would join the Axis 'any day now' while he kept relief coming from the Allies with assurances of maintaining strict neutrality. For three years he managed to walk this tightrope.
The Boyars were able to interview actual players in this tableau who were present at high-stakes meetings with the world's most dangerous men. The depth of the research behind this story is uncanny. Written in the form of historical fiction, this fascinating history reads like a suspense novel. The characterization of Franco will give the reader a new perspective of the man who saved Spain twice. I cannot give this book enough praise.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)