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He fills his head with culture/ He gives himself an ulcer.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004


Strachan, Hew. The First World War. Viking, $27.95.

Library Journal: “superbly written survey…will provide the scholar and the interested reader alike with a suitable starting point for study…Strongly recommended for academic and public libraries.” History Today: “A clear, well-informed and up-to-date narrative of the war which both broadens knowledge and corrects received wisdom. A lucid and readable synopsis of many years of scholarly engagement.” Booklist: “A concise, well-written account of the causes, course, and effects of a shattering conflict.” Publishers Weekly: “Superior one-volume version of his massive projected three-volume work. Readers already familiar with the sequence of events in strict order will benefit most. But all readers will eventually be gripped, and even the most seasoned ones will praise the insights and the original choice of illustrations. This is likely to be the most indispensable one-volume work on the subject since John Keegan’s First World War, and will draw serious readers to the larger work.” Kirkus Reviews: “A well-conceived and lucidly written survey. The best single-volume treatment of the conflict in recent years.” Atlantic Monthly: “Strachan writes vigorously, but he regularly gets bogged down in his storytelling, which renders the book somewhat bloated and unfocused. Moreover, in an attempt to highlight the global dimensions of this struggle, Strachan devotes considerable attention to the conflict waged in Africa and western Asia, which in a short work serves to underemphasize the war on the Western Front—indisputably the crucial theater.”


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