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Christmas Truce: The Western Front December 1914 Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Length: 352 pages Word Wise: Enabled
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Review

`The authors of this excellent book have captured a moment of humanity in a time of carnage. They splendidly evoke what must be the most extraordinary celebration of Christmas since those notable goings-on in Bethlehem.'

Piers Brendon

`An excellent account, placing the truce in its proper context and collecting eyewitness impressions skilfully from both sides.' John Terraine

`Christmas Truce spells out the true story for the first time and it's fascinating.' Godfrey Smith

From the Back Cover

'Just you think,' wrote one soldier to his family, 'that while you were eating your turkey I was out talking with the very men I had been trying to kill a few hours before!'

Christmas, 1914. The first winter of the First World War. In a conflict infamous for its horror and brutality, enemy shook hands with enemy. Soldiers shared rations, exchanged souvenirs, and even played football on a frost-covered No Man's Land. This Christmas truce was not just a brief interlude in one place. The ceasefire between the trenches extended over at least two-thirds of the British line and there were similar ceasefires in the French and Belgian sectors of the Western Front. In some areas the peaceable mood lingered well into 1915. But behind the festive cheer and acceptance of shared experience, the inevitable renewal of hostilities loomed large.

Meticulously researched, Christmas Truce skilfully explores first-hand accounts from both sides of the conflict and offers a classic and unique insight into humanity in a time of bloodshed.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 11294 KB
  • Print Length: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Pan; Reprints edition (2 Dec. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006DY7W8A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #242,546 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is the story of the 1914 Christmas Truce when allied and axis forces forgot for a few days about killing, and instead exchanged gifts with each other in No Mans Land.
The Christmas Truce was not an isolated event, enemy soldiers met up with each other all along the Western Front. The author has once again made excellent use of diaries, letters and newspaper articles(both allied and axis) to illustrate the true feelings of the soldiers who were mostly fed up with the bloodshed and slaughter and wanted to return home to their families.
What is really extraordinary is the fact that on quieter areas of the Western Front the truce went on until February and March of 1915. Also, there were Christmas truces in 1915 and 1916, but not on the same scale as in 1914.
Of course the truces has to end. Pressure from the general staff and politicians ensured this. Germany was not going to back down, and so men who has been friends for a short while returned to their duty of killing and defending their trenches.
Although truces have taken place subsequently, none have been anything like the 1914 truce. This is a facinating book, and well deserves a place on your bookshelf.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I read this book in total fascination. I have always been interested in history particularly that of the 20th Century. I remember learning something of the Christmas Peace of 1914 at school but have never before read into it in such depth. The story unfolds to illustrate mans humanity to each other during the bloodiest war of the 20th Century. Despite all the factors preventing it including the threat of severe punishments from senior officers and being ostracised by people back in their home countries often their own families. Soldiers risked all to climb out of their respective trenches and meet in No Mans land for a temporary peace during the season of good will to all men. Although I am ex military I can not begin to understand the conditions theses soldiers fought under and was extremely moved by the story in general and the individual accounts printed. Finally, I world like to thank the families of the persons involved for giving permission for the letters and diaries to be published and they should be as I am sure they are suitably proud of their relatives. Although perhaps a niche book not to everyone's taste it has encouraged me to read further on the subject.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This extremely well researched and written book helps cut through all the assumptions and mythology which has accrued over the years. Any account of the truce is perforce repetitive; so often the same sources are used, and much of the secondary material is sometimes little more than a regurgitation of the original. The authors use their large resources (from both sides of the conflict) to establish the context of the truce and establish a clear narrative thread and time line. They avoid sentimentality without losing a respect for the people who participated. The Indices are brilliantly arranged. I suggest you look up William Tapp and follow his account through the days before and after Christmas. This must b e the definitive account. My one criticism is the format is too small, especially for the information on the most important map.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is an amazing book full of information about the deprivation, difficulties and humility of the life the British and German soldiers lived through in No Man's Land in WW1 leading up to the Christmas Truce. I'm still reading Through it, as I had to do an assignment based on the facts around the Truce. Brilliant and humbling are just two words I would use to describe this book. Of course there are many more.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
With just over a year to go before the 100th anniversary of WW1 this is an engaging and timely book, well researched, written with love and not a page or even word wasted. Whilst every one remembers the horror this is also, in the main an uplifting book showing that soldiers are men regardless of colour of uniform and multiple first hand reports give it an immediacy and touching feel, specially when you find out the fate of some of them.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I had always heard about the truce and was given to understand it was a myth. My grandfather who was a Royal Engineer never spoke about it as he suffered badly from "shell shock". It now encourages my interest to discover the story of the Angel of Mons. I recommend this book as it has a very easy manner supported by factual statements from the soldiers of that time.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An excellent book. Well researched and scholarly, but simply expressed and easy to read. It puts the Christmas Truce into the real life context of what was happening in 1914 and makes sense of something that is often romanticised. A touching but realistic account of humanity at its best and at its worst.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very good compilation of material on the subject, presented in an excellent easy read giving information from all perspectives on the events as they happened.
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