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Wartime: Britain 1939-1945 Hardcover – 4 Oct 2004

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 672 pages
  • Publisher: Headline; 1st edition (4 Oct. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0755310268
  • ISBN-13: 978-0755310265
  • Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 24 x 6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 457,969 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Gathered from an impressive array of sources, these rich and varied voices tell of blackout, of digging for victory and the arrival of the gum-chewing GIs. There is sadness, sacrifice, love and laughter, which together paint a comprehensive and sensitive portrait of what is was to live in a nation at war. (Mail on Sunday)

Danger, courage, deprivation, exhaustion, fear, humour and that old enemy 'boredom' were endured for six years. This exhilarating book is the voice of these people. (Despatches)

Juliet Gardiner's 'Wartime' provides a marvellously rich, and often entertaining, recreation of life on the Home Front, 1939-45, drawing on an enormous range of oral testimony and memoir. (The Scotsman)

From lost loves to crabby children to the sorrow of receiving the worst possible news, this is a remarkably personal picture of wartime life at home. (The Good Book Guide)

Irresistably unputdownable (Scotland On Sunday (Angus Calder))

humorous and deeply moving (Despatches)

In a book replete with treasures, everyone will find a special jewel. (The Times Literary Supplement (David Stafford))

Juliet Gardiner's book is ...wonderfully readable (BBC History Magazine)

after the torrents of film and forests of print devoted to her subject over the last four decades, it is exhilarating that Gardiner finds so many under-described aspects of the Home Front to document through her fresh witnesses. (BBC History Magazine)

utterly gripping (The Spectator)

Gardiner explores every aspect of the British home front, and presents these deeply moving moments superbly. I have no doubt that 'Wartime' will become the seminal work on Britain at war. (Daily Mail (Max Arthur))

Plenty of nostalgia and war-time spirit in this comprehensive account of life on the Home Front (The Veteran)

Book Description

A new definitive work on Britain during the Second World War told through the voices of the people who were there.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By koink on 10 Mar. 2005
Format: Hardcover
Juliet Gardiner knows how to write readably. She keeps her language simple and her sentences short. She has a keen eye for a good quote. Best of all, she knows that a story can be made more interesting by hanging it on people. She hangs hers on many people - her subject, after all, is the People's War. And she develops it by lacing together a daisy chain of memorable anecdotes. This book is an entertaining read from beginning to end - and the further you read, the better it gets. A wonderful read!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By MarkK TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 25 Aug. 2012
Format: Hardcover
While the phrase 'Home Front' typically is evoked to describe civilian support for a war effort, for Britain in the Second World War the words came to represent a very real dimension of the conflict. From the first days of the conflict Britons felt acutely vulnerable to the possibility of attack, and their fears were realized with the fall of France. Indeed, as Juliet Gardiner notes in this superb social history of Britain's domestic experience in the war, until the invasion of Normandy a civilian in the British isles faced a far greater statistical likelihood of death at the hands of German aggression than did a man in uniform - a detail that illustrates the extent to which the war came home for millions of Britons.

Gardiner's book offers considerable insight into this experience. Drawing both upon the abundant literature about the war and Mass-Observation diaries kept by contemporaries, she gives readers a real sense of what the war was like for the people of Britain. For most, it was a curious mingling of commitment and uncertainty, as people rallied together when facing the shared chaos of war. Yet Gardiner is too good an historian to buy into the 'myth of the Blitz,' as she exposes the incompetency, confusion, and opportunism that was on display as frequently as the heroism and sense of sacrifice that defined the image of the war. By far the best book about the subject, it is essential reading for anyone interested in learning about how Britons lived, survived, and died during the long conflict that continues to cast its shadow upon the nation.
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By V. G. N. on 27 Mar. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having lived through WW2 in London, I found this an interesting commentary of the time. For me it filled out much detail behind the memories. As a used book a good buy which arrived within the promised time
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