Learn more Download now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Learn more Shop Fire Shop Kindle Amazon Music Unlimited for Family Shop now Shop now Learn more

on 28 February 2018
Strange - I'm sure I posted a review before and it seems to have disappeared. A pity because i did put some effort into it.

In summary - rambling, often disconnected, to me it appears more of a recital of diaries, or a record of "stuff that happened". There is quite a bit about one of the characters going off to a remote pacific island which i couldn't connect to the main story in any way. Those parts looked to me like a completely different, unrelated book that had been inserted for volume and were even less interesting than the main story.

I wish i had bought them one book at a time rather than the trilogy, because I most certainly wouldn't have wasted my time and money on the 2nd and 3rd books.

Waste of my time and money.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 19 March 2017
Bought and read this years ago; lent my nice hardback copy to someone who never returned it, so bought the paperback. Arrived quickly.
Excellent harrowing story very well written about the real horror and psychological effect of First World War on the soldiers who had no choice but to fight and their appallingly insensitive treatment by some doctorsand others lucky enough to be cared for by a caring psychiatrist with innovative ideas. Everybody should read this to get some idea of how little support was given to those with mental problems who were expected to return to civilian life and carry on as usual; shows how much our understanding and treatment of trauma has improved to the point where resilience now has to be taught.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 2 November 2014
Have just finished the first part i.e. Redemption, and enjoyed, if that is the right word in the circumstances, the author's style of writing and delivery. Reasonably convincing portrayal of the characters, both military and civilian, who were having to deal with the consequences of warfare on both the front line and at home. It reiterates some of the harrowing experiences the armed forces had to deal with - both enlisted and commissioned personnel - who inhabited the trenches in this bitter, bloody and benighted conflict; experiences that we can barely conceive of, much less relate to. A conflict that Sassoon so rightly questioned despite the disapprobation it raised in many quarters.
I am not sure where some of the insightful views that are bought out in the narrative originated, but they certainly made me stop and think. They may be the thoughts and conclusions of the author or they may perhaps be gleaned from the writings of some the psychologists struggling with the broken minds put in front of them. Either way, they are thought provoking and the author has clearly done some significant research as she has written extensively about the period. Especially when she highlights two polar opposites in the treatment of some of these battle scarred minds.
All in all a deceptively easy read with good rhythm and flow, punctuated with thought provoking moments. I look forward to moving on with the other two parts of the trilogy.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 10 October 2014
I read these books when originally published and thought them to be masterworks. I have just re-read them and if anything my feelings about them have deepened. Firstly they are beautifully written, descriptive yet without any excess; evocative and able to pull you into the moment. The main characters are quite believably fascinating and shockingly vulnerable. The blend of reality and fiction with W.H.R.Rivers, Siegfried Sassoon, Wilfred Owen and Billy Prior is remarkably well done. The violence and sex is to the point and suitably disturbing. Anyone who is interested in the psychology of the trauma suffered by soldiers of the 1st World War and attempts to treat it, pacifism, war poetry and the Great War poets should try this set. On a personal note I think this trilogy alone qualifies Barker as one of the great contemporary novelists.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 14 July 2014
I wanted to read the trilogy this year, in the 100th anniversary of the Great War and what a read! I devoured one book a week, without pause. Pat Barker has somehow managed to get right inside the suffering of these young men, who despite everything seemed determined to go back for more. The characters, historical and fictional are so real. It made me want to fish out my volumes of poems by Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, who appear throughout the novel, both as themselves and their influence on other soldiers. The war made us say 'never again' and yet we have done continually ever since. This book makes us realise why we said it in the first place. A moving, gripping, beautifully crafted book, well worth reading.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 16 October 2014
Quite a feat to get through all three sections in one go, as the subject matter is at times fairly disturbing. As a glimpse of life in an era of intolerance and fear, with much of the book based on fact, it is a triumph. Well written and researched. Recommended for anyone seeking a good account of life around the time of the first world war.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 6 January 2016
A very haunting and powerful trilogy of novels. I was surprised to discover the first in the series was written as long ago as the 1960s; I found myself wondering why I hadn't really heard of it before. It is shocking, moving, compelling and also in places funny - and stays with you long after you have read it. Very much recommend.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 12 May 2016
Everyone should read this, It is such a true description of the stupidity asnd brutality of war. I know this book is about the first World War and its effect on humanity but I dont think much has changed. Hopefully our soldiers get better medical treatment physically and mentaly but there is still war everywhere. A great read and very harrowing but should be read.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 20 July 2017
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on 21 October 2014
Having just visited the battlefields of Somme and Arras and found it such a moving experience, this trilogy has enhanced this experience. It is wonderfully written and portrays the horror and wastage of war and depicts the psychological impact on the soldiers with great depth understanding and compassion
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse