Soldiers’ Songs and Slang of the Great War

Soldiers’ Songs and Slang of the Great WarSoldiers’ Songs and Slang of the Great War by Martin Pegler
ISBN: 9781472804150
Published by Osprey Publishing on August 20th 2014
Genres: History, Military, General, World War I, Europe, Great Britain, Technology & Engineering, Military Science, Social History
Pages: 408

Featured Review

Soldiers’ Song and Slang of the Great War is an update and enlargement of a book first published in 1931. The current book includes phrases that were deemed inappropriate in earlier editions. The slang is both mystifying and well known. For example, a “goo wallah” is the sanitary man. Other items such as a “flapper’s delight” for a young officer are self-explanatory even now.

The songs lack any musical notations and only the lyrics are printed. Many use melodies set to well-known tunes—those by Gilbert and Sullivan seem to be popular as are folk melodies from the British countryside. The lyrics are commentaries on life at the front, the memories of home, and patriotic themes. By war’s end parodies are widespread. Songs from America and France are included, even “Adieu la Vie” (Chanson of Craonne) which was banned in France until 1974. The English translation is buried in the appendix, but is worth finding. The song is an indictment by the soldiers in the field of their treatment by the French army and government.

The Home Front in the Great War covers the British home front and the Hull area in detail. There is a chronological section at the beginning that provides an overview of events back in “Blighty,” followed by short essays on the efforts by groups from the Royals to the YMCA to support of the war effort. The report on the Boy Scouts is especially laudatory.

Both books use a good variety of images and are entertaining to read. Unfortunately, neither book has an index, making it almost impossible to use them for reference purposes.

Anne Merritt

The First World War

The First World WarThe First World War by Hew Strachan
ISBN: 0143035185
Published by Penguin Books on April 5th 2005
Genres: General, Military
Pages: 384

Len's Summary: A distillation of Strachan's (pronounced Strawn) of massive three-volume history of the War, which is still in progress. Remarkable for the contemporary color photos (not tints) found in the center section of the US edition. Dr. Strachan is a member of the WFA's annual Norman B. Tomlinson, Jr. book award panel.

Cataclysm: The First World War as Political Tragedy

Cataclysm: The First World War as Political TragedyCataclysm: The First World War as Political Tragedy by David Stevenson
ISBN: 0465081851
Published by Basic Books on May 11th 2005
Genres: General, Military
Pages: 624

Len's Summary: A survey history which breaks no new ground, but rather is a recapitulation of the last 20 years of scholarship. Published in the UK under the title 1914-1918: The History of the First World War, Allen Land, 729 pages, index, illustrations, ISBN 0 713 99208 5, £25 boards from Amazon.co.uk.

The Great War in History: Debates and Controversies, 1914 to the Present

The Great War in History: Debates and Controversies, 1914 to the PresentThe Great War in History: Debates and Controversies, 1914 to the Present by Jay Murray Winter, Antoine Prost
ISBN: 0521616336
Published by Cambridge University Press on September 1st 2005
Genres: General, Military
Pages: 250

Len's Summary: Historiography: scholarly analysis of the multitude of ways WWI has been interpreted by French, American and British historians, literary scholars, film directors and writers over three generations. Winter teaches at Yale and Prost at the University of Paris.

The Encyclopedia of World War I : A Political, Social, and Military History

The Encyclopedia of World War I : A Political, Social, and Military HistoryThe Encyclopedia of World War I : A Political, Social, and Military History by Spencer C. Tucker
ISBN: 1851094202
Published by ABC-CLIO on September 27th 2005
Genres: General, Military
Pages: 1661

Len's Summary: Dr. Tucker recently retired from VMI and is the editor of the The European Powers in World War I: An Encyclopedia (Garland, 1996) as well as an excellent one-volume history of the war.

Decisions for War, 1914-1917

Decisions for War, 1914-1917Decisions for War, 1914-1917 by Richard F. Hamilton, Holger H. Herwig
ISBN: 0521545307
Published by Cambridge University Press on December 13th 2004
Genres: General, Military
Pages: 284

Len's Summary: Continuation and expansion of Hamilton & Herwig's fine study The Origins of World War I (Cambridge, 2003) this time focussing on key individual actors - monarchs, ministers, military men, political leaders - with divergent agendas.

The World War I Reader

The World War I ReaderThe World War I Reader by Michael S. Neiberg
ISBN: 9780814758335
Published by NYU Press on December 1st 2006
Genres: Military, General
Pages: 375

Len's Summary: Contains documents ranging from official papers to personal diaries, as well as articles and book chapters from written by major scholars. Chapters are arranged chronologically and by theme, and address causes, battlefield leadership, strategies and conditions.

Aftermath: Legacies and Memories of War in Europe, 1918-1945-1989

Aftermath: Legacies and Memories of War in Europe, 1918-1945-1989Aftermath: Legacies and Memories of War in Europe, 1918-1945-1989 by Nicholas Martin, Tim Haughton, Pierre Purseigle
ISBN: 9781409444282
on December 28th 2014
Genres: General, Military, Essays
Pages: 254

Len's Summary: 4428 2, $119 hb. Essays focusing on three seminal events of the violent 20th century: the Armistice of 1918; Allied victory in 1945; and, the collapse of the Iron Curtain in 1989.

The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War: New Edition

The Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War: New EditionThe Oxford Illustrated History of the First World War: New Edition by Hew Strachan
ISBN: 0199663386
Published by Oxford University Press on May 1st 2014
Genres: Military, General
Pages: 379

Len's Summary: First published in 2008 this new edition contains essays by several established historians.

Austria-Hungary’s Last War, 1914-1918 in English

Austria-Hungary’s Last War, 1914-1918 in EnglishAustria-Hungary’s Last War, 1914-1918 in English by Stan Hanna
Genres: Austria & Hungary, General, Military

Len's Summary: Stan Hanna translator, a nearly complete translation of a seven-volume official history of The Great War published in German 70 years ago. Download at http://www.compoestudios.com/Stanhannah/. Includes notes by the translator and original illustrations.

Birds Without Wings

Birds Without WingsBirds Without Wings by Louis de Bernieres
ISBN: 9780307368874
Published by Knopf on August 24th 2004
Genres: Fiction, General
Pages: 630

Len's Summary: A novel by the author of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin about the twilight of the Ottoman Empire in Anatolia before, during and just after WWI. Bermieres presents a series of often quirky first-person accounts by characters in a multi-ethnic village. Interwoven is the biogrpahy of Mustapha Kamal Ataturk, founder of mono-ethnic Turkish Republic. A good read if not exactly good history.

The Secret Battle: A Tragedy of the First World War

The Secret Battle: A Tragedy of the First World WarThe Secret Battle: A Tragedy of the First World War by A.P. Herbert, Winston S. Churchill, Malcolm Brown
ISBN: 1848325215
Published by Frontline Books on April 1st 2009
Genres: History, Military, General
Pages: 216

Len's Summary: The fictionalized story of an idealistic young British officer first published in 1919. // First published by Methuen in 1919 and in print virtually ever since, this semi-autobiographical novel follows the career of a young man who left Oxford to enlist later taking a commission and serving at Gallipoli and on the Western Front. This was the first book to freely discuss executions for desertion in the British forces.

A Bitter Truth: A Bess Crawford Mystery

A Bitter Truth: A Bess Crawford MysteryA Bitter Truth: A Bess Crawford Mystery by Charles Todd
ISBN: 9780062015716
Published by HarperCollins on May 1st 2012
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, General
Pages: 368

Len's Summary: Todd’s (actually a mother and son writing team) second mystery featuring British nurse Bess Crawford involved in a murder while on Christmas leave from war torn France.

A Lonely Death: An Inspector Ian Rutledge Mystery

A Lonely Death: An Inspector Ian Rutledge MysteryA Lonely Death: An Inspector Ian Rutledge Mystery by Charles Todd
ISBN: 9780062034687
Published by Harper Collins on January 4th 2011
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, General
Pages: 368

Len's Summary: Shell shocked Scotland Yard detective Ian Rutledge returns to solve a triple homicide. Charles Todd is a pseudonym for the mother-son writing team of Charles and Caroline Todd.

Coming Home

Coming HomeComing Home by Roy E. Stolworthy
ISBN: 9781781590713
Published by Claymore on 2012
Genres: Fiction, General, War & Military
Pages: 376

Len's Summary: Story of a 15-year-old British volunteer seeking a glorious death in his slain brother’s name. A first novel short listed for the 1910 BritAwards for unpublished fiction.

An Unmarked Grave

An Unmarked GraveAn Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd
ISBN: 9780062015730
Published by HarperCollins on January 2nd 2013
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, General
Pages: 272

Len's Summary: It’s 1918 and nurse Bess Crawford is investigating the murder of a British officer on the Western Front and finds herself becoming a target of the murderer; second novel in the Bess Crawford series. The first Bess Crawford book: A Bitter Truth, a William Morrow reprint, 2012, is also available from Amazon.

Army Service Corps, 1902-1918

Army Service Corps, 1902-1918Army Service Corps, 1902-1918 by Michael Young, Richard Holmes
ISBN: 0850527309
Published by Leo Cooper on July 1st 2000
Genres: General, Military, United States
Pages: 406

Len's Summary: A history of the worldwide operations of the British Army Service Corps in WWI replete with maps, b&w illustrations, biographies of key officers and tables of Corps organization.

Soldier and Warrior: French Attitudes toward the Army and War on the Eve of the First World War

Soldier and Warrior: French Attitudes toward the Army and War on the Eve of the First World WarSoldier and Warrior: French Attitudes toward the Army and War on the Eve of the First World War by H. L. Wesseling
ISBN: 9780313307218
Published by Greenwood Press on January 1st 2000
Genres: History, Europe, France, Military, General, World War I
Pages: 248

Len's Summary: How French publicists glorified the Army and idealized war in the decade before 1914.

The United States, Revolutionary Russia, and the Rise of Czechoslovakia

The United States, Revolutionary Russia, and the Rise of CzechoslovakiaThe United States, Revolutionary Russia, and the Rise of Czechoslovakia by Betty Miller Unterberger
ISBN: 0890969310
Published by Texas A&M University Press on April 1st 2000
Genres: History, Military, World War I, Political Science, International Relations, General
Pages: 463

Len's Summary: A revised edition of the 1989 work based on newly available documentary sources. By the author of "Woodrow Wilson and Great Power Relations in Central Europe."

Leadership in the Trenches: Officer-Man Relations, Morale and Discipline in the British Army in the Era of the First World War

Leadership in the Trenches: Officer-Man Relations, Morale and Discipline in the British Army in the Era of the First World WarLeadership in the Trenches: Officer-Man Relations, Morale and Discipline in the British Army in the Era of the First World War by G. D. Sheffield
ISBN: 9780312226404
Published by Palgrave Macmillan on October 6th 2000
Genres: History, Europe, Great Britain, Military, World War I, Social Science, General, Technology & Engineering, Military Science
Pages: 270

Len's Summary: Kitchener’s army in the field.

Isonzo: The Forgotten Sacrifice of the Great War

Isonzo: The Forgotten Sacrifice of the Great WarIsonzo: The Forgotten Sacrifice of the Great War by John R. Schindler
ISBN: 9780275972042
Published by Greenwood Publishing Group, Praeger on 2000
Genres: General, Italy, Military, Strategy, World War I
Pages: 409

Len's Summary: Frustration on the Italian Front. Look for a review in Stand To!

Your Country Needs You — From Six to Sixty-Five Divisions

Your Country Needs You — From Six to Sixty-Five DivisionsYour Country Needs You — From Six to Sixty-Five Divisions by Martin Middlebrook
ISBN: 9780850527094
Published by Pen & Sword Books on July 27th 1999
Genres: General, Great Britain, Military
Pages: 160

Len's Summary: The story of the expansion of the British Army during WWI from a colonial constabulary to a force of over two million men.

War Land on the Eastern Front: Culture, National Identity, and German Occupation in World War I

War Land on the Eastern Front: Culture, National Identity, and German Occupation in World War IWar Land on the Eastern Front by Vejas Gabriel Liulevicius
ISBN: 9780521023900
Published by Cambridge University Press on May 18th 2000
Genres: History, Europe, Eastern, General, Military, World War I
Pages: 320

Len's Summary: A book about German occupation policy and operations in Lithuania, the Baltics, Ruthenia and parts of Poland from 1915 through 1919 and the Soviet Red Army invasion. Dr. Liulevicius is a frequent speaker at WFA seminars, and professor of History at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.

The Central Powers in the Adriatic, 1914-1918: War in a Narrow Sea

The Central Powers in the Adriatic, 1914-1918: War in a Narrow SeaThe Central Powers in the Adriatic, 1914-1918: War in a Narrow Sea by Charles W. Koburger
ISBN: 9780275970710
Published by Greenwood Publishing Group on January 1st 2001
Genres: History, Military, General, World War I
Pages: 145

Len's Summary: A bloody sideshow, but a sideshow nonetheless.

Distant Thunder: Canada’s Citizen Soldiers on the Western Front

Distant Thunder: Canada’s Citizen Soldiers on the Western FrontDistant Thunder: Canada's Citizen Soldiers on the Western Front by Joyce M. Kennedy
ISBN: 9780897452434
Published by Sunflower University Press on March 2000
Genres: Canada, General, World War I
Pages: 336

Len's Summary: Dr.Kennedy is a member of WFA, daughter of a Canadian Great War veteran and, herself, a retired Canadian Air Force flying officer.

Turbulence in the Pacific: Japanese-U.S. Relations During World War I

Turbulence in the Pacific: Japanese-U.S. Relations During World War ITurbulence in the Pacific: Japanese-U.S. Relations During World War I by Noriko Kawamura
ISBN: 9780275968533
Published by Greenwood Publishing Group on January 1st 2000
Genres: History, Asia, General, Japan, Military, World War I, United States
Pages: 173

Len's Summary: The author is Assistant Professor of History at Washington State University; she was educated both in Japan and the US. An active and troubled period in bilateral relations marked by American efforts to maintain an “open door” in China in the face of persistent Japanese expansionism. See Camaraderie for a full review. Things went downhill from here. . .

Ordered to Die: A History of the Ottoman Army in the First World War

Ordered to Die: A History of the Ottoman Army in the First World WarOrdered to Die: A History of the Ottoman Army in the First World War ISBN: 9780313315169
Published by Greenwood Publishing Group on November 30th 2000
Genres: General, Middle East, Military, Turkey & Ottoman Empire, World War I
Pages: 265

Len's Summary: The author is a retired U.S. Army officer and Turkish speaker who worked from Turkish Army archives not routinely accessible to civilian researchers.

The Undermining of Austria-Hungary: The Battle for Hearts and Minds

The Undermining of Austria-Hungary: The Battle for Hearts and MindsThe Undermining of Austria-Hungary: The Battle for Hearts and Minds by Mark Cornwall
ISBN: 9780312231514
Published by Palgrave Macmillan on September 2nd 2000
Genres: History, Military, World War I, Historiography, Europe, General
Pages: 503

Len's Summary: A welcome addition to English monographs on the Central Powers.

Great War, Total War: Combat and Mobilization on the Western Front, 1914-1918

Great War, Total War: Combat and Mobilization on the Western Front, 1914-1918Great War, Total War: Combat and Mobilization on the Western Front, 1914-1918 by Roger Chickering, Stig Forster
ISBN: 0521773520
Published by Cambridge University Press on September 11th 2000
Genres: History, Europe, General, Military, World War I
Pages: 584

Len's Summary: Drawn from a 1996 conference in Switzerland this volume has papers from many leading German historians. Something for everyone specialist and generalist alike.

Complete Idiot’s Guide to World War

Complete Idiot’s Guide to World WarComplete Idiot’s Guide to World War by Alan Axelrod, Walton H. Rawls
ISBN: 0028639022
Published by Alpha on October 12th 2000
Genres: History, Military, World War I, United States, General
Pages: 432

Len's Summary: An expansion of the well-known Idiot’s Guides into WWI history. A useful reference, but one with many errors.