9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Truly Brilliant Story, 28 Feb. 2014
Being the centenary of the First World War, we will all be looking for a good book on the subject. Whilst there are plenty to chose from, many are very similar - focusing on huge battles, fought in the trenches on the Western Front. This book, however, shines a light on a less well-known arena of the Great War, set in the deserts of the Middle-East, and therefore provides a welcome break to the mud and misery that usually goes hand-in-hand with this topic.
That said, The Road to En-Dor is not without it's strife, and part of the reason this conflict remains largely forgotten about is that, even despite the immense casualties being inflicted on the British at places like the Somme for little reward, their defeats in what is now modern-day Iraq were so absolute they were hideously embarrassing for the British Army. The humiliation suffered there resulted in a virtual cover-up, and those who had survived the fighting were effectively abandoned, left to fend for themselves on gruelling death marches through the harsh deserts and on to their eventual destinations in POW camps spread out across the Anatolian wilderness.
However, again unlike the bulk of writings of this time, this book choses not to dwell too much on the actual combat and is instead a diary, written by a Prisoner of War in Turkey, about how he, along with his friend Lt. C.W. Hill, begin to orchestrate an incredible plan to escape and return home. What follows is a wild adventure that lurches from hilarity to borderline madness, as the 2 men manipulate their Turkish captors with increasingly preposterous schemes.
I cannot recommend this book enough, and the fact that this already brilliant story has been further embellished with all the extra, never-before published content makes it essential reading. This material, included as an e-book, gives further background information on the author of The Road to En-Dor, Lt. E. H. Jones, and has been written and compiled by his family, thus providing the reader with incredible insight into his life and adding huge depth to the story contained in the main book. The added extras makeup a great book in itself and include copies and transcripts of all the original Seance Diaries which Jones and Hill had kept at the time; letters and postcards that Jones had sent home whilst he was imprisoned in Turkey, highlighting all the secret coded messages they contained which enabled the prisoners to get information past their guards and to the authorities back home; photographs and maps and a detailed history both of Jones the man and the wider events surrounding his tale.
This is a must read!