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4.3 out of 5 stars43
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 26 January 2013
I really like this book which is quite detailed and very informative on all aspects of the war revealing details of theatres of war I had not even known about. I only have one criticism and this is regarding the maps included of the battle zones, there are lots of places named on them but they are mainly not the same as those named in the narrative so I had to resort to other sources to identify the actual geographic locations (many thanks to the internet).

I requested this book as a Christmas present to go with the DVD set of the BBC's Great War series I had also requested, which I remember watching when it was first shown on TV. This was a great move since they really do complement one another with extra informatio on the DVD's as well as being able to see the actual historical people involved,

Well recommended
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on 21 February 2000
If you want to understand Kosvo, Bosnia or any of Europe's recent conflicts Keegan's book on the First World War is the place to begin. It is a real page turner, readable and full of interesting facts and insights. All you need is an interest in humanity to take part in a pacy tour d'horizon of man's inhumanity to man. For example, find out how the Indians fare in France, what really happened at Gallipoli, and as an English person the relatively small part the Battle of The Somme played in the overall theatre of war. I cannot recommend it highly enough and can't wait to read Keegan's Second World War.
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on 7 February 2016
As an excellent overview of the key events, players, places and drivers of WW1 this is superb.
Whilst a thorough description, so that we do not lose sight of them, of the horrors of in particular the Western Front is vital, this book is the better for not having them - they are well covered in myriad other accounts of the war. In this book Keegan once again brings his knowledge, research and excellent use of English together to create what is the best WW1 account I've yet read (just beating Hasting's 'Catastrophe').
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An extremely well-written history of WW1 which should take the mantle as the definitive work on WW1 from Liddell Hart's 1932 'History of the First World War'. Covers several topics far more comprehensively than Liddell Hart. Of the First World War histories I have read only Barbara W. Tuchman's 'August 1914' is better crafted, but then that was a Pulitzer Prize-winner, often described as a masterpiece of the historian's art. Keegan writes well enough to maintain the reader's close interest.
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on 15 February 2014
There will be more interest in WW1 now that the anniversary is imminent. This is a story well told and in sufficient detail to inform the reader without being overwhelmed. He is ready to challenge some of A J P Taylor's views. Taylor is the most accessible of historians and has appeal to the mass market. His opinions are provocative if sometimes exaggerative.

This is a well written and fully researched history which I would recommend to anyone interested in the subject.
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on 12 September 2013
Lots of illustrations make this book really great to read Well written lots of photos and maps. Would highly recommend
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on 3 February 2000
Very well written and puts the events associated with WW1 into their historical perspective. From the initial causes, through the relentless horror of the western trenches and eastern front, to the eventual 'fallout' of the armistice, the author provides both interesting facts and intelligent opinions. My only criticism of the book is the relative lack of maps and diagrams.
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on 12 February 2015
I have purchased this as I have borrowed it so many times from the library that I thought I should really buy my own copy. This is a really good book it covers the First World War in great detail and is a valuable asset for anybody interested in finding out more about this period in history.
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on 9 July 2001
I did enjoy this book, which was clearly constructed and included some telling observations. Where it was lacking was in characterisation, and at times had too much of an "end-to-end" feel. As if the author was racing too much. This was a reminder that the book was written as a piece of history, losing the kind of "contemporary" current affairs feel that AJP Taylor uses to bring the epoch to life. Still, a thoroughly good book that has a clear sense of direction, if not necessarily a ground-breaking set of observations or sensitivities.
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on 12 January 2014
There's no doubt that this is an extremely impressive work. However, it consists almost entirely of highly detailed accounts of the campaigns and battles themselves - and little else. This is a military history. Anyone interested in a general history of the First World War would probably do better to look elsewhere. Not personally taking an interest in the level of military granularity, I fould this book extremely tedious.
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