Stefan Templeton's life raises at least as many questions as it answers. Are the tales he relates to author Matthews true or the product of a vivid imagination? Is Stefan a good hearted person who finds himself constantly on the edge of disaster or a heedless self-gratifying jerk willing to risk his own life and those of others to fill his need for action? Is he a kind and thoughtful person or an id-driven child? Is he the great man many come to see him as? David Matthews never ducks these questions about his childhood friend who decides to relate his story. In fact, he raises each question and explores it with a good deal of care, eventually conducting many interviews to corroborate the stories Stefan has related. What emerges is a fascinating, complex, driven, and confusing character worth reading about presented in the form of a story that often seems more like a novel than a biography.
On a whim, I sent a request for a comment to Ebba Boyesen at the psycho-therapeutic institute where she and her mother, Gerda, have practiced for many years and where Stefan spent much of his childhood and youth. Much to my surprise, she responded, saying, "Every word that David Mathew writes about my son,according to my knowledge, is accurate." She continues by describing a recent incident in which Stefan saved a woman's life in the surf before her eyes. Her final comment adds some of her own insight to the story, "Between the getto and the castle in France and his Grandmother in Monaco and my family in Norway,...not so easy always!!"