Most helpful positive review
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 11 November 2010
This is a truly and unexpectedly amazing book - taking the reader in stages into the hell of the First World War.
What sets it apart in my opinion are three things;
Firstly it is undeniably and gloriously authentic. This is not someone blinded by emotion, either jingoism or fear, but someone who sat through the experience open eyed and concious throughout.
Secondly this isn't a personal account. It manages to feel utterly objective and utterly real without worrying about the author's peron. Somewhere in the blurb it talks about the writing being triple-distilled, which is a very good analogy for its clarity yet depersonalised style.
Finally the sense of meaning is marvellous - Christian and Arthurian, but also Classical and Valkerian, just a superb piece of rich, resonating purpose. The meaning it conveys to me is a sense that we matter, individually, no matter what - a religious hymn to humanity. A precis doesn't really work but read it and I think you'll understand what I mean.