Customer Reviews


51 Reviews
5 star:
 (24)
4 star:
 (17)
3 star:
 (6)
2 star:
 (4)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great under all aspects
I'm italian and I know italian literature about the Great War is excellent both in quality and in breadth (altough it is often more devoted to specific topics than to general overviews of the whole war). It is always interesting to see it from a foreigner's point of view, years ago I read Schindler's Isonzo that while it had some qualities it also left a lot to be...
Published on 4 May 2009 by R. Barbieri

versus
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The White War
Well written and very well researched but it is impossible to follow the battle descriptions without a seperate atlas opened. The book almost fatally lacks decent maps. I have had to use a wine atlas which has reasonably good detailed maps of the relevant areas to get a good understanding of Mr. Thompson's otherwise excellent battle narratives.
Published on 25 Sep 2009 by Mr. Graham Hawken


‹ Previous | 14 5 6 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars White War review, 19 April 2011
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
This book is so interesting for those who would like to learn about the little-known war being fought on the Italian/Austro-Hungarian front during WWI. With so much attention given to WWI struggles in the better-recorded areas, it is easy to overlook the battles that were fought and the hardships endured on the Italian front. A great insight.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The White War, 25 Feb 2010
By 
Rita (England UK) - See all my reviews
This is a remarkable historical record, researched in great detail. It makes compulsive reading. We discovered the area of the battle when on holiday a year ago and were delighted to find that a book had already been written on the subject. It gives all the information we could want, and makes enthralling reading on an appalling subject.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent, 10 Jun 2009
By 
Anthony Hyman "the nomad" (Germany) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
This book is superb. It weaves the military and cultural aspects of this war together, in which 1,3 million Italians died. You constantly feel upset at the stupidity of the Italian Generals. The best book I have read this year
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Even better when read in the geographic area, 3 Oct 2009
By 
G. D. Busby "Cornish Graham" (Cornwall) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
Although purchased a few months ago, it was deliberately saved for a visit to the South Tyrol/Alto-Adige; being in one of the settings for the conflict described by Mark Thompson enhances the reading pleasure although he is good at describing the conditions in any event. The reader's understanding of the situation is aided by an Appendix which details the situation after the Risorgimento yet still decades before the White War.

It was also useful to have read G.M. Trevelyan's Garibaldi shortly before this and Norman Davies' Microcosm, a study of Wroclaw over the centuries, which further contextualises the Prussian influence described by Mark Thompson.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written but uneven and sprawling history of the Italian front, 26 Aug 2009
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
This book is, as many reviews have noted, an original, well written and thorough history of a neglected aspect of the Great War. I felt, however, that despite this it was an overlong and sprawling, tending to neglect the social, political and historical aspects of the war for a very detailed account of the military campaign, which - given the repetitve and futile assaults launched by the Italians - itself becomes something of slog for the reader. The book is perhaps at its best in its pen portaits of the generals, politicians, poets and ordinary people and in its description of landscapes and places, alhough the author's familiarity with the topography and geography of the area may leave may readers slightly confused. Overall, an educational, necessary and interesting book, but one whose sometimes less than tight structure (what was the point of including a huge chuk of 19th century history as an appendix at the end?) understates the talents of the author as a writer.

From a more academic point of view, although balanced and detailed on military campaigns fought by both sides, the book is very reliant on Italian language sources and therefore perhaps - with the possible exception of the Slovenes - neglects Austrian/Austro-Hungarian perspectives.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 6 Sep 2010
By 
D. Spencer "Big Dave" (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
After seeing the plaudits that covered this book, I began it with eager anticipation. However, the author's perculiar approach of alternating his narrative of the campaigns with studies of poetry, philosophy and politics etc began to get on my nerves and in the end I was skimming entire chapters.
Odd bits were good (e.g. Caporetto), but on the whole I didn't enjoy it.
Not a subject I'll be returning to (or an author, for that matter).
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Self-satisfied & verbose, 30 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
The book is a bold synthesis of military & political history as well as literary criticism & psychology. It provides an illuminating introduction to a largely forgotten campaign.
However, it is flawed in several respects. Other reviewers have drawn attention to a lack of maps & the limited use of Austrian sources. Additionally, the narrative style is heavy-handed. The narrative voice intrudes often, & it is self-amused & "clever", particularly in the passages which deal with poems / prose produced by combatants.
The author also fails to give a voice to the soldiers at the sharp end of the conflict. Whilst the book contains interviews with veterans (which are often remarkable), little use is made of accounts which were prepared contemporaneously by ordinary combatants. The author uses accounts written mostly by educated soldiers which are often poetic in style but uninformative about daily life in the trenches. We learn little about the lives of the mainly peasant Italian army or their opponents.
The author sets out to establish the relationship between the Italian experience in World War One & the rise of fascism in the early 1920s. He is only partially successful in this endeavour because he neglects the effects of "class" & the adherence to late 19th-century military doctrine common to the military caste of all Western nations. Cadorno was a brutal general, but he was a product of his time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Review, 3 Feb 2013
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
Heavy reading but interesting which I bought to improve my understanding of the areas that we visit on our holidays
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars hard work, serious students only, 4 Mar 2010
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I can't fault the research, the detail or the political perspectives; all top rate. But it is written in such an academic style with no colour that I gave up about half way. This frankly reads more like a text-book than a work for the general public. Also, and i agree with another reviewer here, the absence of decent maps is a disgrace. The narrative is continuously refering to towns, rivers and hills to understand the objectives and the ebb and flow of the action. Unless you buy a separate map along with the book, you will be continuously frustrated by trying to find out where these places are.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Covers new ground, 21 Aug 2009
By 
A. J. Waters "AW" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 (Paperback)
This is a very interesting study of a sadly often overlooked aspect of the First World War. Thompson also examines the social aspects surrounding the conflict such as the development of Futurism. The section on war poetry from the Italian front is also very revealing. It is well researched and moves along at a nice pace.

My main criticism of this book is an odd one - the title. As I read this book while commuting having the title 'The White War' in massive red letters on the front meant a few people have mistaken it for some sort of white supremacist manifesto when glancing at it!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 14 5 6 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919
The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919 by Mark Thompson (Paperback - 2 April 2009)
9.09
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews