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What WW1 books are you reading?

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Donald D

I am currently reading "The Invisible Cross" by Andrew Davidson. The book follows the letters written to his new wife from the beginning of the war through to 1918. He rose from being a company commander to 2ic 1st Cameronians, and eventually OC of the battalion. I am only on page 87, so early days. Very interesting so far.

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NorthStaffsPOW
13 hours ago, Marilyne said:

Just had a lot of train time and read "Nursing through shot and shell" by Vivian Newman. It's the diary of staff nurse Beatrice Hopkinson. Very good read!! 

And now I'm going through Alan Palmer's "The Salient". 

 

M.

 

I have just finished The Salient and can recommend it as a good overview of the battles around Ypres. First and Second Ypres get particularly good coverage but I felt it tailed off a little as the Third and Fourth battles were covered. He also gives a good overview of the political aspects of the campaign and the British need to appease/ support their French Allies. I also found his coverage of the Belgian campaign and post- war political attitudes in Flanders useful. I can also recommend Palmer's earlier work "The Gardeners of Salonika."

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Black Maria

I've just started reading ' Angels and Heroes ' , a book based around the journal of Sergeant Hugh Wilson of the 1st Royal Irish Fusiliers . I've only

read the introduction so far but have already discovered that Franz Ferdinand was murdered on the 29th June and Britain declared war on Germany

on August 3rd . But ignoring those dubious 'facts' , it looks like an interesting book .

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Black Maria
On ‎18‎/‎08‎/‎2019 at 08:52, Black Maria said:

I've just started reading ' Angels and Heroes ' , a book based around the journal of Sergeant Hugh Wilson of the 1st Royal Irish Fusiliers . I've only

read the introduction so far but have already discovered that Franz Ferdinand was murdered on the 29th June and Britain declared war on Germany

on August 3rd . But ignoring those dubious 'facts' , it looks like an interesting book .

Finished reading this book , an interesting account which includes the journal of sergeant Wilson interspersed with an overview of the battalions actions

from the start of the war until Wilson was wounded at St Julien in April 1915 . I thought it suffered a bit from the lack of maps when dealing with the early

actions , one map for Le Cateau but none for the retreat and battles of Marne/Aisne . It also didn't mention Wilson's company (C) until page 54 which would

have been more useful to know earlier when reading about the battalions actions and movements in August/September  .

 

When I read Haldane's 'A Brigade of the Old Army ' he mentioned an attack on a farmhouse which was stubbornly held by a small force of Germans ,

after several men had been killed trying to storm it the building was eventually set alight and most of the Germans burnt to death . This action is also

mentioned by Wilson as it was his battalion that attacked the farmhouse . The farmhouse became known as 'Sydney Street ' ( reference to the famous

London siege in 1911 ) by the troops and Wilson later rescued a badly burned German from the ruins but was not thanked by the medical staff who told

him they had too many of our own wounded to deal with.

 

The book also contains many photographs , a roll of honour for those men of the battalion killed between Aug14-Apr15 , a short biography of Sgt Wilson

and Private Robert Morrow V.C , the order of battle of the B.E.F in 1914 and a short account of the legend of the 'Angel of Mons' .

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Marilyne
On 18/08/2019 at 09:32, NorthStaffsPOW said:

 

I have just finished The Salient and can recommend it as a good overview of the battles around Ypres. First and Second Ypres get particularly good coverage but I felt it tailed off a little as the Third and Fourth battles were covered. He also gives a good overview of the political aspects of the campaign and the British need to appease/ support their French Allies. I also found his coverage of the Belgian campaign and post- war political attitudes in Flanders useful. I can also recommend Palmer's earlier work "The Gardeners of Salonika."

 

I felt exactly the same way... where the chapters about Y1 & 2 gave more insight into planning and decision making, the chapter about Y3 left me wanting... there was nothing there that we don't already know from more specialised books but all the same, the end of the book feels like it had to be finished quickly and it was quick to be done with.

But a good read nevertheless. 

Now reading "Winged Victory" by V.M. Yeates and about to start Penny Starn's "Sisters of the Somme" ... title is somewhat misdirecting, as it has nothing to do with the battle of the somme as I initially thought, but more about the life at one particular hospital, but OK... it fits in the current study direction. 

 

M.

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Black Maria

Just finished ' War letters of Bernard Long ' , a short but poignant book containing the letters home of a young subaltern of the W.Yorks

who was killed at Passchendaele .

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Scottyqld

I'm currently reading "A war in words" by Svetlana Palmer and Sarah Wallis . It's another collection of diaries and letters but it includes correspondence between Vado Cubrilovic and his sister after the armistice (apparently Vado was one of three Serbians  that went after Ferdinand he was the youngest??)  and also has  german and French children's view of the conflict . Also has accounts of the Italian and Hungarian battles in the Julian Alps. Anyway highly recommend to anyone who hasn't read it as it shows first hand accounts from most theatres including a first hand account from a Ghanian? trooper.

Scotty 

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Black Maria

Just started reading 'Trench life in the front line , World War 1 ' , the diary of Sidney Appleyard  of the 9th London regiment covering the years

1915-17 , it's a very scarce privately published account ( c1966 ) .

 

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Dust Jacket Collector
3 hours ago, Black Maria said:

Just started reading 'Trench life in the front line , World War 1 ' , the diary of Sidney Appleyard  of the 9th London regiment covering the years

1915-17 , it's a very scarce privately published account ( c1966 ) .

 

Never heard of that one, John. Sadly the internet doesn’t want to provide me with a copy.

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Black Maria
46 minutes ago, Dust Jacket Collector said:

Never heard of that one, John. Sadly the internet doesn’t want to provide me with a copy.

I've never seen a copy before i purchased this one Alan . When he retired in 1966 he decided to decipher his war diaries and his niece edited and

put them together in book form . It looks a bit of a D.I.Y job , 68 typed pages with photo, diagrams and maps . I doubt many copies were produced,

maybe just enough for family and friends ?

 

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