The only perspective that makes this read a step-up from the inherent zenophobia in The Clumsiest People in Europe: Or, Mrs. Mortimer's Bad-Tempered Guide to the Victorian World is the twenties between-the-wars time slot. Byron himself may have been a serious contender for the escalating hate of the British by continental Europeans as he, with pride, did not lose an ounce of his Englishness.Smyrnablurb - Europe in the Looking Glass is Robert Byron's travel classic, recounting a car journey across Europe in 1926, and providing a mirror on events and nationhood both then and today. Byron (a descendant of the poet) found acclaim as the author of The Road to Oxiana - an account of a trip to Afghanistan and Persia.It tells the story of three young Englishmen travelling across the neighbouring continent in an unreliable car - encountering the rise of Italian fascism and the anarchy of Greece along the way. In other words, the book offers a compelling mirror on Europe today (a world of technocrats and populists...) with the additional benefit of being witty, colourful and full of apercus about such types as loud American tourists and unwashed German backpackers.The conclusion offers the travellers (and all of us) a new perspective on their homeland as well as the countries and cultures they explore together.Read by Rupert Penry-Jones. Producer: David Roper A Heavy Entertainment production for BBC Radio 4.