|Cramming 10 years' worth of reading into one!|
A great deal of it has been original letters and diaries from 1914 to 1918 of course. But I've also done a fair amount of background reading, which has meant putting on hold my (slow) progress through the works of Dickens. I'm pleased to say, though, that the First World War has proved just as engrossing.
Now that the year is drawing to a close, I thought it would be interesting to list some of the titles that I have enjoyed most. Please feel free to leave your own favourites in the comments section at the end.
- FISHER'S FACE by Jan Morris - a portrait of Lord 'Jacky' Fisher, Admiral of the Fleet and a huge figure at the turn of the century, by an author who has always been transfixed by his face.
- NOW ALL ROADS LEAD TO FRANCE, The Last Years of Edward Thomas, by Matthew Hollis - a beautifully crafted biography about a poet often overshadowed by Sassoon and Owen.
- THE FIRST DAY OF THE SOMME, by Martin Middlebrook - military history at its best, the story of July 1 1916, when Britain suffered 60,000 casualties on the Western Front.
- TRENCHES TO TRAMS, The Life of a Bristol Tommy, by Clive Burlton - local history is brought to life in this informative and well-illustrated book based on the memories of soldier George Pine.
- UP THE LINE TO DEATH, The War Poets 1914-1918, selected by Brian Gardener - an anthology of haunting and memorable poems arranged in sections which follow the progress of the conflict.