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The Autobiography of the British Soldier: From Agincourt to Basra, in His Own Words

The Autobiography of the British Soldier: From Agincourt to Basra, in His Own Words [Kindle Edition]

John Lewis-Stempel
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product Description


'I guarantee that after reading this harrowing, funny and often unbelievable book, you will never again be so careless of a fellow human being's willingness to die for his country... What a book.'
-- Sunday Express, 5 August 2007

Book Description

From Agincourt to Waterloo, from Dunkirk to Basra, this is the autobiography of the man who has seen all British military history unfold in front of his eyes: the British soldier.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1667 KB
  • Print Length: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Endeavour Press Ltd. (4 Feb 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #93,501 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

John Lewis-Stempel is a writer predominantly known for his books on nature and history. He lives in Herefordshire, on the very edge of England before it runs into Wales, and within a stone's throw (with a decent gust of wind) from where his family were farming in the 1300s. His many books include the best-selling Six Weeks, Fatherhood: The Anthology, England: The Autobiography, The Autobiography of the British Soldier (Sunday Express '5 stars') and The Wild Life (Sunday Telegraph 'Timely and Compelling') and Foraging: The Essential Guide to Free Wild Food. His books have been published in languages as diverse as Brazilian Portuguese and Japanese, are available on all continents apart from Antarctica, and have sold more than a million copies. He has two degrees in history, writes books under the pen name Jon E. Lewis, is married with two children, and also farms. The Guardian's video interview with him about The Wild Life can be seen at
Six Weeks, his book about British frontline officers in the First World War, published in November 2010 by Weidenfeld & Nicolson was described by The Literary Review as 'the most moving book I have ever read on the First World War' and Dan Stevens (Matthew Crawley in Downton Abbey) said it was 'the best research resource ever.' The book became a number 1 bestseller in WW1 category on Amazon.His 'The War Behind the Wire', about the life, death and glory of British PoWs in WW1 was published in January 2014, and his Sunday Times Top 30 hardback non-fiction bestseller Meadowland: The Private Life of an English Field was released in May 2014. The book was featured on Radio 4's Start the Week, and was Countryfile's Book of the Month.
He writes a column on the Great War for the Sunday Express.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The unchanging nature of soldiery 9 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The life of a soldier from Agincourt to Afghanistan, told in the words of the people who were there via a series of letters and other writings.

Some of the writers you'll have heard of, Gunner Spike Milligan and Cornet Auberon Waugh for example, but most you won't. The variety of voices and perspectives make this a fascinating read.

It's a very 'put downable' book, which is not really a criticism, but it's ideal to pick up and read in short bursts.

What you do take away from this is that, despite advances in the technology of killing, the basic nature of soldiery hasn't changed all that much over the centuries.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Horrors of War 15 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book really brings home the horror of war, in all it's blood and gore.and it is really refreshing to read some praise for the british soldier,instead of mainly the Americans in wartime, and the way he was mainly despised on return to England and still is to a certain extent when you think of the way injured troops returning from Iraq, Afganistan etc.are treated.
I have not finished the book yet having got to George Orwell and the spanish civil war, but anyone who is interested in the facts and needless slaughter in these wars,(usually instigated by arrogant governments) from people who were there, should read this book, even as like me you do not much like war books.
The letters and reports of different wars are well put together in chronological order with various notes outlining various historical facts, so making an easy and understandable read.
Maxc London
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good history of officers in WW1 5 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Interesting look at platoon and company officers. Good quotes and a look at WW1 trench warfare. Most that was not known to me prior to reading the boook
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Buy this book! 27 May 2008
By B. Lang
This is a fascinating book. It is moving and original. Excellent to read cover to cover, or to dip into for a shorter read. A safe bet to buy as a present, as there is something to interest everyone in this volume.

Recommended for anyone interested in history or soldiers. I also bought a copy for my teenage daughter doing a World War 1 project at school.
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