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on 18 May 2017
A waste of time and not worth £2.99 new. Expecting some detail from a local author on the Cardiff Pals in the Forst World War instead I find the book stretches the story so thinly and pads it with poor postcards and illustrations of the time that it says little at all. The Pals recruitment, training and service history is tossed together in a dozen sentences missing out a great deal and relying on lengthy quotes from newspapers. Where there is interpretation of the history of the First World War it is weak, predictable and wrong, dependent on trite one-liners.
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on 1 February 2017
Good
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on 20 November 2016
Good introduction.
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VINE VOICEon 22 March 2014
This is a good, readable little book on Cardiff, the ports of Penarth and Barry, and the towns and villages of the Vale of Glamorgan during the period of the Great War. At only 89 pages it is not an in-depth analysis but provides some very good historical background to the area and examines its experience during the war years. In some ways, that experience was typical: the war initially disrupted trade; many businesses were affected by men joining the armed forces; the local people came under the constraints of increasing government controls and faced personal tragedies as the casualties mounted; and the level of economic activity grew again as the ports, mines, farms and local trade were increasingly focused on war production. Such things did not affect all areas equally or in the same ways, and the area covered by the book is an interesting microcosm in that it comprised bustling Cardiff with its rather grimy coal docks; Penarth and Barry, also coal docks but at the same time seaside resorts; and the rural farmland of the Vale. "Cardiff & the Vale in the First World War" provides good examples and context of how the war affected each of these differing areas. The raising of Kitchener's Army in the shape of the "Cardiff Pals" receives good coverage, and there are chapters on Penarth pier, the coal ports, war on the home front and the personalities and notable people of the area. It is well illustrated and for anyone with connections to the area or South Wales in general it will certainly be worth reading.

The cover price of £14.99 strikes me as rather high for a paperback book of this scale, but it is nicely produced, printed in colour and is likely to be available at a discount at some of the online retailers. I understand that it is also available in an e-book edition.
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