Read Letters from the Front: Letters and Diaries from the BEF in Flanders and France, 1914-1918 by Kevin Smith Online


By taking a fresh look at the letters and diaries of the BEF soldiers who fought this war, Kevin Smith has uncovered first person accounts long undisturbed in the archives of the Imperial War Museum There is humor tales of city dwellers learning to ride horses There is pathos men returning from leave, freshly married, to be killed by a random shell Above all, there is the human reaction to the stench, to the mud, to the lousy food and oh yes the lice, too The little details carry the narrative forward, such as the incessant presence of bully or using jam to flavor just about anything Bread covered with mud, baths in whisky barrels, little pet dogs they are all here This book touches on all the great controversies the bad leadership, the soldiers sent to be slaughtered, the first use of the tank, and so forth, but just enough ensure the reader understands the problem The contemporary photographs strongly demonstrate daily life in the trench This is a welcome addition to the human side of this monstrously inhuman event....

Title : Letters from the Front: Letters and Diaries from the BEF in Flanders and France, 1914-1918
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 1781553386
Format Type : Paperback
Language : English
Publisher : Fonthill Media March 19, 2015
Number of Pages : 224 pages
File Size : 667 KB
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Letters from the Front: Letters and Diaries from the BEF in Flanders and France, 1914-1918 Reviews

  • Joseph M. Dukert
    2019-05-17 14:48

    Hundreds of new books about World War I will be published over the next four years, as that "war to end all wars" marks its centennial; but this is one that is worth reading now and going back to from time to time. The literary device of building a historic narrative around then-contemporary writings has rarely been more effective. Obviously the product of long and careful research, it will make any reader more understanding of the ordinary soldier's perspective -- while renewing or deepening an appreciation of how and why that terrible conflict can still stimulate broader thoughts about today and tomorrow. Although perhaps aimed at a wider popular audience, this could also be a great "enrichment" book for any related course -- from high school through grad school. I would be tempted to give it five stars instead of four, but -- having written 10 books myself -- I'm probably an unusually tough critic. -- Joseph M. Dukert

  • Adam
    2019-05-08 22:02

    A very engaging book. Leveraging the soldier's own words, it brought scale (large and small) to the trenches of WWI. Soldiers describe how mud, fatigue and death constantly presented themselves in new ways. I appreciated current state descriptions of the battlefields and how they still affect everyday life. The book covered a lot of ground on how WWI impacted the lives and the world, but stayed true to telling it through the words of those who were there.

  • John Byrne
    2019-04-26 18:58

    You did a good job telling both the military and human side of the War.

  • Amazon Customer
    2019-05-05 19:06

    I'll admit, the author writes well, and this book Might be interesting to someone whose never read much about WW 1, However,