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What WW1 books are you reading?


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#1226 maxi

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Posted 08 April 2012 - 08:04 PM

I am reading 'The Vertigo Years' by Philip Blom which is subtitled 'Change and Culture in the West, 1900-1914'.

A good read which I highly recommend.

Maxi

#1227 uncle fester

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 07:48 AM

Der Weltkreig tough as my German is rusty to say the least, but i won't give up.

#1228 MartinWills

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Posted 10 April 2012 - 10:12 PM

The Countryside at War, 1914-1918 by Caroline Dakers

Re-reads of The Children of the Souls: A tragedy of the First World War by Jeanne Mackenzie and How We Lived Then, 1914-1918: a Sketch of Social and Domestic Life in England during the War by Mrs. C.S. Peel


OOOooohhh lovely - Mrs Peel is fascinating and Caroline Dakers book, if I remenber rightly, has a wonderful illustration of a cubist scarecrow!

Me? I am reading "The Song of Tiadatha" at the moment

#1229 JesseM88

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 01:16 AM

The History Of The Ninth (Scottish) Division 1914-1919 by John Ewing, MC.

It's been a good read. Provided me with some details that have helped me out with a project I'm working on. Interesting to see the impressions he had of the war with so little hindsight.

#1230 truthergw

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 09:57 AM

I am well into Michael Senior's biography of Haking. " Haking: A Dutiful Soldier". Lots to think about and I may do a review in the review section.

#1231 mandy hall

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 10:10 AM

I am reading Marjorie's War, Four families in the Great War 1914-1918 by Charles and Reginald Fair purchased at the GWF conference.

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#1232 mickm

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Posted 11 April 2012 - 07:43 PM

I have just finished reading ' Marjories War' and thoroughly recommend it, especially to anyone with Hertfordshire connections.The book is a collection of letters and diary entries between the four families that spans the entire duration of the war and at times is profoundly moving. Each rererence to a place or person in the narrative has been thoroughly researched and illuminated in copious footnotnotes.I was extremely reluctant to put it down and on a couple of occasions only did so at 1.00 a.m in the morning when i got a well aimed elbow in the ribs from the missus who wanted the light turning out!

#1233 MartinBennitt

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Posted 23 April 2012 - 05:42 PM

Just read the incomparable 'There's a Devil in the Drum' by John Lucy, for the first time but certainly not the last. Before that I enjoyed Richard van Emden's 'Tommy's Ark'.

cheers Martin B

#1234 Sue Light

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Posted 23 April 2012 - 06:41 PM

Have just finished the new version (previously on the web) of 'A Nurse at the Front - The First World War Diaries of Sister Edith Appleton', edited by Ruth Cowen, published by Simon and Schuster and the Imperial War Museum. Well edited, with sections of the darkest black - heavy convoys, death, dying and great struggle - mixed with joyous descriptions of relaxation and happiness, the French countryside and patriotic endeavour. There are so few books on women's work during the Great War and it's good to see something 'new.'

Sue

#1235 Roger H

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Posted 23 April 2012 - 07:27 PM

Sue

Thanks for the tip on this one :thumbsup: . I have still got "arrears" of reading, but I have added it to my Amazon "wish list" for the next round of ordering. I note that the paper back version is not out yet.

Roger

#1236 MartinBennitt

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:02 AM

More Richard van Emden, this time 'The Quick and the Dead'. I enjoyed Richard's talk on the subject at the GWF conference and I'm enjoying his book too.

cheeers Martin B

#1237 Jim Hastings

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:23 AM

Juggling (quite happily) Lewis Stempel's 'Six Weeks'; Bernard Martin's 'Poor Bloody Infantry' (North Staffs); Frank Hawkings 'From Ypres to Cambrai' (QVR and RND) and Bille Nevill Letters (8 East Surreys) - kept in various parts of house and in car.
Recommend all.

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#1238 hazel clark

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 04:52 PM

Reading Leon Wolff's "In Flanders Fields". Only read a few chapters but both he and General Fuller, who wrote the introduction, are very scathing about Haig and Lloyd George. Although Wolff is an American, it seems fairly balanced so far and Fuller says he concurs with Wolff's asessment. However, in the preface, Wolff does make a statement that surprised me. Quote "Germany reluctantly backed Austria". It will be interesting to see how the book progresses.

#1239 Jim Hastings

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:22 PM

Hi Hazel, not read that title so not sure if this explanation is in context with the quote you gave, but there is evidence that at the 'eleventh hour' (29th-30th July 1914) the German Chancellor, Bathmann Hollweg, tried to restrain the Austro-Hungarians after the Serbs replied to the AH ultimatum and that even the Kaiser considered whether there was a reason to go to war - he had even tried to sway the High Command from following the Schleiffen Plan and concentrate on an 'Eastern' war vs. Russia instead (to his General's dismay). However, the genuine nature of both of these events remains questionable/ historically debateable (playing the diplomatic stage). This may explain your surprise quote if it fits in date wise.

Cheers

Jim

#1240 hazel clark

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 06:57 PM

Hi Jim!

Thanks! What you say does fit in. Although I had also read somewhere about the 11th hour attempts to change plans, almost everything I have read since indicates that the German military AND the Kaiser were "gung ho" for war. There seem to be so many different "sources" out there that for a novice like me it is difficult to know what really happened. I am enjoyng the book .

Incidentally, I had a great uncle, Roland Raymont Foxley (QVR # 394504 )who died May 4th 1918 and is buried in Cambrai East Military Cemetary in the POW section.

Hazel C

That

Hi Hazel, not read that title so not sure if this explanation is in context with the quote you gave, but there is evidence that at the 'eleventh hour' (29th-30th July 1914) the German Chancellor, Bathmann Hollweg, tried to restrain the Austro-Hungarians after the Serbs replied to the AH ultimatum and that even the Kaiser considered whether there was a reason to go to war - he had even tried to sway the High Command from following the Schleiffen Plan and concentrate on an 'Eastern' war vs. Russia instead (to his General's dismay). However, the genuine nature of both of these events remains questionable/ historically debateable (playing the diplomatic stage). This may explain your surprise quote if it fits in date wise.

Cheers

Jim



#1241 RammyLad1

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 07:23 PM

I'm currently reading a battered old copy of Ypres 1914, Death of an army, by A.H. Farrer-Hockley. This paperback has been lying about the house for yonks and I wish that I had read it years ago. The schliffen plan is fully explained and easy to understand. It is an engaging book and the narrative flows. I don't know if its still in print but it is a must to add to your collection.

#1242 Jim Hastings

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:50 PM

Hazel, I read in an earlier post you were looking for a Seaforths memoir - how about 'Last Man Standing - Norman Collins' - just out, edited by Richard Van Emden

Norman Collins gave TV interviews for a programme on veterans and he was so memorable. Not sure if he was in the Bn of your interest, but maybe of general Seaforth interets to you?


Best wishes

Jim

#1243 hazel clark

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 08:57 PM

Have someone coming out next month from Scotland so will add that book to the list for them to bring.
thanks, Was able to order it from Amazon here in Canada. Thanks
Hazel

Hazel, I read in an earlier post you were looking for a Seaforths memoir - how about 'Last Man Standing - Norman Collins' - just out, edited by Richard Van Emden

Norman Collins gave TV interviews for a programme on veterans and he was so memorable. Not sure if he was in the Bn of your interest, but maybe of general Seaforth interets to you?


Best wishes

Jim



#1244 WorldWarOne234

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:33 PM

Can someone please suggest what John Terrain books are his best work n World War I. I would appreciate any suggestions. ALso, the best books to read and have about the U-boat wars in World War I. Are there any particular works someone who enjoys the topi of the U-pBoats. Also any other suggestion for World War I reads would be appreciuated.

#1245 hazel clark

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Posted 29 April 2012 - 11:40 PM

I enjoyed Terraine's "The Western Front" and "To Win a War - 1918 The Year of victory" But Stephenson's "First World War" is very good. Can't help with WW1 U Boats although I have read a lot about them in the second war!
H.C.

Can someone please suggest what John Terrain books are his best work n World War I. I would appreciate any suggestions. ALso, the best books to read and have about the U-boat wars in World War I. Are there any particular works someone who enjoys the topi of the U-pBoats. Also any other suggestion for World War I reads would be appreciuated.



#1246 Lachlan

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 08:14 AM

I've just finished "Gallipoli" by Australian author Patrick Carlyon. I found it really readable and it told the whole story, avoiding an Aussie-centric viewpoint.

I was shocked to find the 29th Div effectively went through its manpower more than twice during the campaign (went in about 17,000 strong and suffered well over 34,000 casualties).

As for Hunter-Weston*, what he did to 52nd Lowland Division when he threw them in regardless was disgraceful - How did he put it in those fox-hunting terms ? "...blooding the pups" ?

*Hunter-Bunter ? I can think of a better nickname starting with B !!

#1247 truthergw

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 01:35 PM

Reading Leon Wolff's "In Flanders Fields". Only read a few chapters but both he and General Fuller, who wrote the introduction, are very scathing about Haig and Lloyd George. Although Wolff is an American, it seems fairly balanced so far and Fuller says he concurs with Wolff's asessment. However, in the preface, Wolff does make a statement that surprised me. Quote "Germany reluctantly backed Austria". It will be interesting to see how the book progresses.


Leon Wolff's book is one of the classics. I would definitely recommend it for a gripping description of the war and Passchendaele in particular. That said, it was written quite some time ago and from an openly left wing point of view. Wolff was a pacifist and naturally critical of Haig and the strategy of attrition. Much factual material has been brought into the light of day and much discussion of how the war was fought has taken place since the book was written. I would put it next to Graves and Sassoon on my shelf. Well worth a read but with reservations as to analysis.

#1248 Steven Broomfield

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 02:50 PM

A couple of weeks ago I bought six of the eight volumes of Anglesey's History of the British Cavalry, 1816 - 1919 (I already had Volume 4 on the South African War, and Volume 6 on Mespot was missing), so I am currently reading Vol 7 on the Curragh and the Western front in 1914. Last night I read the description of the action at Nery.

I would recommend these books to anyone with even a passing interest in cavalry: they are erudite but also very readable. Indeed, un-put-down-able is a valid description.

Impressively, Volumes 1 to 3 are signed by the author: for 170 for the six I am pretty chuffed. All I have to do now is finf Volume 6 and I shall be happy. I shall be packing the volumes I've not read for holiday reading this year. Brilliant books; can't think why I didn't buy them when they came out.

#1249 hazel clark

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 05:16 PM

It is really quite interesting when one reads several books on the same aspect of the war. All of the books quote "sources" and it is amazing to me how the slant of the books can be manipulated to present a quite differerent point of view. I suppose that even of the people who actually took part, (as did Fuller in this instance) they had a differerent point of view depending on where they were in the great scheme of things at the time.

Nevertheless, this is one of the more readable books on the subject and I am enjoying it, which I must admit was not the case with some of the other books on the subject. For different reasons, I can't claim to have enjoyed either Lynn Macdonald's book or Prior and Wilson's although I had eagerly looked forward to the arrival of the latter. Haven't read Sassoon as yet althought there is a chapter in Dunn's book which is an excerpt.

Hazel C

Leon Wolff's book is one of the classics. I would definitely recommend it for a gripping description of the war and Passchendaele in particular. That said, it was written quite some time ago and from an openly left wing point of view. Wolff was a pacifist and naturally critical of Haig and the strategy of attrition. Much factual material has been brought into the light of day and much discussion of how the war was fought has taken place since the book was written. I would put it next to Graves and Sassoon on my shelf. Well worth a read but with reservations as to analysis.



#1250 truthergw

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 06:18 PM

I was lucky enough to read the complete Memoirs of George Sherston which gives Sassoon's biography from a youngster and shows background etc. The reader gets a fuller picture of Sassoon. One must bear in mind that Sassoon was a poet and that like Graves, may have occasionally indulged in a bit of poetic licence. Again, a classic and I would say a must read. With Capt. Dunn, Sassoon, Graves and Frank Richards, the Welsh Fusiliers were the best served regiment from a documentary point of view. Each book, deservedly seen as a classic.