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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great mark of respect to a wars unsung heroes
Lyn Macdonald has yet again proven herself as one of the great historiographers of our time. This account of the struggles and lives of forgotten heroes in the war hospitals is a very moving and heartfelt read. The way in which Macdonald really makes you feel the passion and turmoil of the people who fought bravely to save the young men injured and maimed on the...
Published on 23 Nov 2001

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3.0 out of 5 stars VADs change lives, including their own
Good as an introduction to a very large subject. The serious student of the VAD at war would need more substance as VADs were employed along the whole of the front, in more than one country and doing all manner of works other than 'nursing'.
Published 4 months ago by A


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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Roses of No Mans Land, 21 Aug 2010
Just finished this book - my first by Lyn MacDonald but will certainly not be my last. Despite the sombre mood it's closing chapters have left me in, this was a fantastic blend of facts, infomation and personal histories which created an easy to read journey through years of WW1 - which were cleverly interwoven with 1914 characters cropping up again throughout the book and in particular in different circumstances at the closing of the war

In addition to its enlightening history of what was going on away from the battle front and the consequences of the human struggle it provides an equally fascinating insight into the British class system and the breaking down of its barriers through need and circumstance - for some, but not all!

I would thoroughly recommend this book - normally I read soldiers accounts, in works like Voices From and Forgotten Voices but it has been brilliant to read so many behind the scenes parallel accounts of tragedy and joy
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarquable work, 28 Feb 2010
This is the first book by Lyn Macdonald that I read. I was so impressed by her careful research, her intelligent and thoughtful approach of the First World War, and her excellent writing style, that I ordered several others of her books. Each one is excellent. She is a wonderful writer and historian. The details she gives, the people she chooses to quote, the way she explains the psychological and military aspects of the war are remarquable. I absolutely recommend all her books to those interested in the Great War.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating piece of history, 11 July 2014
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This review is from: The Roses of No Man's Land (Kindle Edition)
Lyn MacDonald's painstaking research has yielded a wonderful account of the contribution made by so many dedicated young women to caring for wounded soldiers in World War I.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Open your eyes, 12 Jun 2014
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Lyn MacDonald succeeds in making you think again about the First World War in a way which is possibly for the first time. The account of the work they did in the most appalling conditions is awesome.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good read for a nurse, 10 Jun 2014
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Moon Insect (channel islands) - See all my reviews
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Jolly interesting, I tend to skip over the war blather and just read about the nursing because that's what interests me but it would interest those with an interest in what was going on war wise too :-)
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting book., 22 May 2014
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The author has done a lot of research, and it is interesting to read the experiences of English, American and Australian nurses and VADs during World War One. I felt that the picture would have been more vivid if it had been possible to add observations from the wounded and the doctors, though there was input from American medical officers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Roses of NO Man's Land, 21 May 2014
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Jeff Brookes (Leicestershire UK) - See all my reviews
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Gives a very comprehensive view of the suffering & tragic conditions that our troops had to endure and how the medics & nurses did their utmost to treat the wounded in what was really appalling conditions.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read this book!, 19 May 2014
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This is a must read for anyone interested in WW1. I purchased it for my Kindle as it was recommended as the inspiration for "The Crimson Field" on BBC which I have been watching and enjoyed. The book begins with the note that it is not "just a woman's book" - how true. It is a record of the reminiscences and diaries of those who actually were doctors, nurses, VADs, ambulance drivers and patients in the clearing stations and field hospitals in Belgium, France and back home in "Blighty". These people, mainly volunteers, went to serve "our boys" and their experiences changed their lives for ever. They were part of a war that involved literally millions of men of many nationalities; from Britain (England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland), Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India, Africa and Americans who joined the Canadian army before America actually joined the war. They saw horrific injuries from day one but their resilience and determination to help the injured and dying kept them going through long days and nights without a break. Through necessity, breakthroughs in medicine and surgery were made which changed the lives of those undergoing the treatment and are still being used and improved today. All this is documented. Don't get me wrong, this is not a dried up depressing medical story, it is full of life, joy, happiness, laughter and love. Until I reached the end, I didn't realise that the book was written some time ago - 1993 - but it is very pertinent to the conflicts in which our armed forces are, or have been, involved such as Iraq and Afghanistan and the casualties and deaths that families have had to endure today. This book is a tribute to true "unsung" heroes and heroines and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
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4.0 out of 5 stars gift for friend, 12 May 2014
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This book was a gift for a friend, who is a retired nurse and interested in WW1 events. She told me this was an excellent read.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Really good read!, 10 May 2014
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This is a really good book. Gives a real account of the happenings of what went on during WW1. The horrors endured by the soldiers and the bravery of these women was amazing. We owe such a lot to these men and women and I really think these type of books should be a MUST read for history lessons in the school curriculum! We must never forget these people without them we wouldn't have the lives we have now.
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