The First World War was one of the deadliest conflicts in history. As they say, nobody wins in a war, and the nine million people killed in combat, five million civilians who died either from attacks, hunger, or diseases, proved that to be true. It is hard to imagine the horror of the victims. On August 27, 1928, an attempt to prevent another World War was made through The Kellogg-Briand Pact— an agreement to outlaw war. We all know how it turned out, as World War II ensued in 1939. If you’re in the mood to read books about World War I, here are five books that you could check out:
The World Crisis by Winston Churchill
Written by the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, this magnificently-written book was his account of WWI that showcased his several roles throughout the war: First Lord of the Admiralty, a Cabinet on the Dardanelles Committee, a major, a lieutenant-colonel, a Member of Parliament, Minister of Munitions, Secretary of State for War and Air, and Secretary of State for the Colonies. The book was published in six volumes between 1923 and 1931.
The Great War and Modern Memory
Published in 1975 by Oxford University Press, The Great War and Modern Memory was written by Paul Fussell, an American cultural and literary historian. His book focused on describing how the experience of the war overwhelmed its participants. The book was ranked #75 on the 100 best non-fiction books of the 20th century.
The First World War
This book was written by the Chichele Professor of the History of War at All Souls College and the winner of the 2016 Pritzker Military Museum & Library Literature Award for Lifetime Achievement in Military Writing, Sir Hew Francis Anthony Strachan. As written by Los Angeles Times, “This serious, compact survey of the war’s history stands out as the most well-informed, accessible work available.”
All Quiet on the Western Front
All Quiet on the Western Front describes the German soldiers’ extreme mental and physical stress during the war and the feeling of indifference that they felt upon returning to civilian life after the war. This novel tells the story of Paul Bäumer, a German soldier on the Western Front during World War I. Erich Maria Remarque, a German veteran of World War I, wrote at the beginning of his book, “This book is to be neither an accusation nor a confession, and least of all an adventure, for death is not an adventure to those who stand face to face with it. It will try simply to tell of a generation of men who, even though they may have escaped (its) shells, were destroyed by the war.”
A Farewell to Arms
This novel written by the American novelist Ernest Hemingway describes the love affair between Henry, an emigrant, and Catherine Barkley, an English nurse. This love story is labeled the greatest American novel to come out of World War I.