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The Virgin Soldiers (Virgin Soldiers #1)

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  262 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
'It rained a lot and steamed when the sun shone. It was always hot. But it was safe...'

One way or another the Communist guerrilla war in Malaya kept a whole British army occupied from 1948 until 1952. They were the virgin soldiers. Idle, homesick, afraid, bored, oversexed and unsatisfied.

A young virgin like Brigg had to grab his fun while and where he could - in the Libert
Paperback, 320 pages
Published November 3rd 2005 by Arrow (first published 1966)
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(showing 1-30)
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mark monday

they don't stay virgins for long!


time to strip down...

for the British soldiers stationed in late 40s-early 50s Malaya at the Panglin Base on Singapore Island, there is one element that impacts them all: the intense, pervasive heat. clothing becomes unnecessary for these soldiers, a burden, and so those clothes are quickly discarded throughout the day and night. the soldiers are stripped down in other ways as well: young, inexperienced in matters of love and death, their personaliti
Oct 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was so much better written and more full of depth, plot, descriptions and rounded characters than I was expecting given its reputation. It contains the best description of a fight that I've ever read.
Oct 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
A bawdy, Carry On-esque wartime farce that eventually jars. Some riotously funny moments here and there but the plot seemed to wander like a lost puppy.
Pauline Ross
It’s the curse of the book group, isn’t it? Someone suggests a book, and you think: yes, that will be a light, fluffy read, something to make us laugh, a bit light-hearted and not too heavy or intellectual. Well, it wasn’t intellectual, sure, but light? Fluffy? A book about incompetent National Service conscripts sent off to fight in the jungles of Malaya?

There were a few laugh out loud moments, it’s true. And the book had some potential to be the comic novel it was billed as. Perhaps when it wa
The Malayan Emergency was not classed as a War for insurance purposes. Lester could have made a joke about stupidity of the name of the 12 year conflict which killed 6,710 guerrillas, 1,345 Malayan troops and police, 519 Commonwealth personnel and 2,478 civilians. In a world exhausted by WWII, frightened of communism and wars in Korea and Vietnam, the Malayan Emergency was the only conflict where the imperialists defeated the guerillas and left the country on a base to a stable future of indepen ...more
Laura Morrigan
I got this at a dollar at the second hand shop, because I found the pulpy cover amusing. Imagine my surprise when it actually turned out the be pretty good! An interesting story about a young woman who has relationships with two soldiers. While she thinks the older one will be after sex and the younger after love, it is actually the other way around. All around them is the devastating war that brings people together only to tear them apart. From my layperson's point of view, it was a good depict ...more
Jun 13, 2014 rated it it was ok
Somehow, I am unfortunately unable to connect with the book flow. The settings though are very vivid. Even when the title says "virgin", the Main character; Brigg, did not stay virgin for a long time since the beginning of the book. I love how the author explicitly described the interaction during the sexual encounter without it being intimidating. Personally I was waiting for a climax part throughout the book but I fail to discover it. Overall this is an ok book..
Huw Collingbourne
Sep 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I had assumed that this was going to be semi-literate smut - sort of "Confessions of A Squaddie". Far from it! In spite of its reputation for being a bit 'racy' this is a beautifully written book with very little in the way of sex and quite a lot in the way of well-drawn characters, evocative story-telling, humour and pathos. Why have I been avoiding Leslie Thomas all these years? Suffice to say I have already ordered a whole batch of his other novels.
Bianca Miani
Jan 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
It was a long trip and there was only one book, this one. I don't even like war books and really only read this because there was nothing else.
There are very few books that made me laugh out loud but this is one of them.
There a few books that get tears from me but this one did that too.

What a find.
May 17, 2014 rated it liked it
Not a bad read, but I found it somewhat disjointed and hard to latch onto the characters. Some very funny moments and some quite harrowing, gave you an idea about serving your National Service in Malaysia, but not a patch on Milligans war memoirs.
Aug 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Classic tale of military naivety set in the humid jingles of South East Asia. Not a tale of action more of the banality of life under a colonial flag. Great read, sometimes, sometimes rather poignant, it's a reality check for those who want to remember a bygone era through rose tinted glasses.
Rob Damon
Apr 11, 2014 rated it liked it
I read this a while ago. I would probably read it again.
Jan 02, 2015 rated it liked it
Liked the book at the time but now I fear its style and humour are rather dated. I never bothered to read any more of the series.
Steven matthews
Dec 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I've read this book three times now and probably will again
May 16, 2014 added it
Virgin soldiers
Glynis O'halloran
Nov 06, 2015 rated it liked it
This was a re-read. I first read it as a teenager and thought it was the naughtiest book I'd ever read. How times have changed! The second read was really rather boring and very dated.
James M
Dec 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dram-com-brit
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Born in Newport, Monmouthshire, 1931, Leslie Thomas is the son of a sailor who was lost at sea in 1943. His boyhood in an orphanage is evoked in This Time Next Week, published in 1964. At sixteen, he became a reporter, before going on to do his national service. He won worldwide acclaim with his bestselling novel The Virgin Soldiers, which has achieved international sales of over four million copi ...more
More about Leslie Thomas...

Other Books in the Series

Virgin Soldiers (3 books)
  • Onward Virgin Soldiers
  • Stand Up Virgin Soldiers

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