Chris Baker has given a good account of the narrative of the book and there is no need for me to repeat it.
The tussle for control of the areas of Alsace & Lorraine is taught in school history classes and my memory is of a political story. Rickert's book takes it to the unfortunate effects the political struggle had on individual real people like Rickert.
Mr Sutherland is to be congratulated first for finding this book and for producing a well written, accessible translation. I do wonder why it was not translated before?
This is a good read and very informative about this particular aspect of European history and WWI in general.