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Mr Brown's War: A Diary of the Second World War [Paperback]

Helen D. Millgate
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Mr Brown's War: A Diary from the Home Front Mr Brown's War: A Diary from the Home Front 5.0 out of 5 stars (1)
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Book Description

24 Jun 1999
Richard Brown - an ordinary member of the public - kept a personal diary throughout the whole of World War II, recording war news as he perceived it, gleaned from newspapers, hearsay and the wireless. Along with this narrative of the war, he presented an image of life in wartime Britain - rationing, blackout restrictions, interrupted sleep, the prospect of evacuation and the enormous burden placed on those civilians coping with a full-time job and the extra demands of war work. In addition to his reserved occupation as a draughtsman, Richard Brown also "did his bit" for the war effort as an air-raid warden, Home Guard and occasional Fire Watcher. Like so many others, Richard Brown was inspired by Churchill's leadership and oratory. Looking abroad, he was as disgusted by the French capitulation as he was admiring of the Russians. He never doubted ultimate victory, but he was frequently impatient and critical of the conduct of the war. A well-informed man who made his own judgements, Mr Brown's diary entries were carefully considered; his observations range from the pithy to the humorous and the scathing. The diaries offer a window on the period, reflecting the moral and social attitudes of the time and the need to be fully involved in the war effort, but they also refute the argument that the British public was kept in ignorance of the bad news.

Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Sutton Publishing Ltd (24 Jun 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0750923253
  • ISBN-13: 978-0750923255
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.5 x 2.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,391,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr Browns War 16 Sep 2012
By JS
Format:Paperback
I'm finding this a really interesting read. I'm not really interested in battle tactics, and descriptions of battles etc,and this book is not that. It is Richard Brown's record of the information that was coming through and descriptions of the war progress and is quite gripping. He makes his own judgement on the events happening, and right at the beginning predicts that this war will last five or six years.

Interspersed with this are details of the sorts of rationing being introduced, and various details of life as it was being lived then. Although this is mainly a war record entries about his wife, his children and his family and friends, his war work, food and prices, are interspersed all the way through. He worries quite a bit about his family, but is very positive about his wife's ability to cope.

For me his style of writing is fluid, easy to read, and, I have to say, entertaining. This may have something to do with the editing, or course. But overall, a really good and informative book.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best... but not bad either. 4 Feb 2006
Format:Paperback
Not in the same emotional league as Nella Last's war diary, but then Mr Brown has a more traditional male outlook on the war. His diary is more like a record of world events, which are done better elsewhere, and not really what people come to these sort of diaries for in my opinion. However, he does include items of domestic and social interest too, and it would be unfair to say that the book disappoints overall as an authentic flavour of the period is definitely to be found between these covers.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit boring for me 4 Oct 2013
Format:Paperback
When I started this book I really enjoyed it and managed to get half way through before I got bored. This is no disrespect to Mr Brown as I think he did a very thorough diary but I found it all a little repetitive and dull after a while. I have read far more exciting wartime diaries, I think maybe a man might enjoy this more than I did.

I gave it 3 stars as I think it would definitely be enjoyed by others and for the fact that Mr Brown did such a meticulous job of his diary, noting down all the little details and drawing illustrations. Its just not one for me I'm afraid. I got half way through and had to abandon reading it as I was too bored, so it went off to the charity shop for someone else to maybe enjoy.
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