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All Quiet on the Western Front (All Quiet on the Western Front/The Road Back/Three Comrades #1)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  233,069 Ratings  ·  6,114 Reviews
This is the testament of Paul Bäumer, who enlists with his classmates in the German army of World War I. These young men become enthusiastic soldiers, but their world of duty, culture, and progress breaks into pieces under the first bombardment in the trenches.

Through years of vivid horror, Paul holds fast to a single vow: to fight against the hatred that meaninglessly pi
Mass Market Paperback, 296 pages
Published March 12th 1987 by Ballantine (first published November 1928)
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Gerhard Venter I think this is where the phrase "lost generation" originated. A 19-year-old became a veteran soldier if he could survive the first couple of weeks in…moreI think this is where the phrase "lost generation" originated. A 19-year-old became a veteran soldier if he could survive the first couple of weeks in the trenches. This is not a rabid anti-war leaflet, but rather a description of how the hell of shelling, hunger, cold, rats, etc. changed a whole generation's lives and hollowed them out, so they became unable to feel or hope for anything after the war. A wounded kid did not know how to ask a female nurse to go to pee, because he didn't know how to speak civilly anymore … just read it!(less)
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Jul 23, 2009 Daniel rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Daniel by: Rose
Shelves: 2009
I don't know why it took me so long to get to "All Quiet on the Western Front," but I'm glad I finally read it and am grateful to my friend Rose for recommending it. The book, first published in the late 1920s, is an absolutely heartbreaking, wonderfully written novel about the permanent damage done to those who fight in wars. Few anti-war novels written since have matched Erich Maria Remarque's unsettling book, and I doubt any have surpassed it.

Given how famous "All Quiet" is, there's little ne

Man, I need a break. I've been reading about the First World War solidly since December and I've had enough now. There's only so many times you can go through the same shit, whether they're English, French, German, Russian – oh look, another group of pals from school, eagerly jogging down to the war office to sign up. Brilliant. Now it's just a matter of guessing which horrible death will be assigned to them: shrapnel to the stomach, bleeding to death in no-man's-land, drowning in mud, succumbin
Youthful and docile soldiers march on the blasted earth to their doom, as dead comrades stagger behind in unision. The steadily rising sense of foreboding strangles their necks with the stench of the dead. The faltering youth will be overcome with the wild anguish of horror; unimaginable horror that Erich Maria Remarque portrays with appalling precision and dreadful certainty.

“It is very queer that the unhappiness of the world is so often brought on by small men.”

Upon release in 1929, Adolf H
Five heartbreaking stars for this classic novel about World War I.

I first read All Quiet on the Western Front my freshman year of college, thanks to Dr. K's humanities course. During this re-read, I paused not only in appreciation of what soldiers and their families suffer during war, but also for all the great teachers who spend their days trying to inspire students to have Perspective and Big Ideas and to Think Critically. I remember how meaningful it was to read this book when I was 19, and
… all the memories that come … are always completely calm … They are soundless apparitions that speak to me, with looks and gestures silently, without any word … They are quiet in this way because quietness is so unattainable for us now … Their stillness is the reason why these memories of former times do not awaken desire so much as sorrow – a vast, inapprehensible melancholy. Once we had such desires- but they return not. They are past, they belong to another world that is gone from us.


Oct 16, 2010 Kemper rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My copy of this was a paperback that I had picked up somewhere in my high school years. It was printed in the ‘50s and cost 60 cents per the cover price. The pages were yellowed and an old dog of mine (dead 20 years now) chewed on a corner of it at one point, and his teeth marks are still on it. But I held onto that copy over the years through multiple changes of residence and numerous paperback dumps to used book stores and library donations. When I was trying to organize some of my stuff packe ...more
All Quiet on the Western Front (or, to give it its German title, Nothing New in the West) has been hailed as the best war novel ever, and it's easy to see why. World War I is described in such vivid non-glory in its pages that you are sucked into the story straight away and stay there for the next two hundred pages. It is obvious that the author, Erich Maria Remarque, had first-hand experience of the things he writes about; the details are so right and authentic-sounding that they couldn't possi ...more
Paul Baumer needs you to see things from his perspective.

Paul is a German soldier, posted on the Western Front during World War I. Paul hangs out with his buddies and tries to keep things loose, but Paul can’t rid himself from the stress of battle. He goes home on leave and everything is tainted with war. No matter what he does or who he’s with, Paul’s mind drifts toward the front. Paul’s world view has been changed in significant ways.

On the front Paul is consumed with death. Paul sees his sma
I am silent. What can I say? Here I have been, for the last year or two, searching for books on WW1. I have read fiction and non-fiction and biographies. This thin little book has more of an impact than any other I have read.

This is a book to be read many times.

Not only is it profound in message, but the author writes beautifully.

Can humor be incorporated in a book with such a serious message? Yes, Remarque pulls this off too.

This thin book perfectly captures

- war in the trenches
- mustard gas
Saoirse Sterling
You can read my full review of All Quiet on the Western Front on my site XLeptodactylous.

This is the second book that I've very nearly given five stars this year. All Quiet on the Western Front is the story of one young man fresh out of school who is sent to the front line with his classmates and must survive the horrors of war. I have a deep interest in the First World War in particular and I've never read anything (not even a poem) that deals with war in such a way as this.

It is unforgiving an
Sep 16, 2014 Dem rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yeah ! My first 5 star read of 2014. Excellent- A mesmerizing and vivid account of war.

I bought this novel as an audio book for $2.95 on Audible's daily deal and firstly I have to say the narrator was excellent but after a few pages I realized I just had to have the physical book as the writing was so beautiful I needed to have the book in my hand and re-read some of the wonderfully constructed sentances.

This is a story about Paul, a young German soldier who goes to war along with some of his
Diane S ☔
Aug 30, 2015 Diane S ☔ rated it really liked it
This book is an extremely powerfully written book highlighting many of the horrors the men who fought in WWI experienced. Telling it from the viewpoint of a young man, Paul, who we first meet as a student makes it more personal for the reader. They enlist with the bravado of the young, fighting for their country, a sense of adventure that once in the trenches they quickly lose.

The nightmare that was trench warfare, seeing your friends killed and many times not sure where your next bit of food wo
Oct 30, 2015 Lyn rated it it was amazing
The greatest war novel.

This was one of the first books that made me think that even though I wanted to be a writer someday, maybe I did not have what it takes.

This was a sharp, swift kick in the gut; a none too subtle reminder that there are somber, very real and poignant moments captured in literature that escape petty categorization and cynicism, there are real moments that cannot be trivialized and placed on a genre specific bookshelf.


Oct 07, 2016 Lisa rated it it was amazing
I am finishing a phase of reading and teaching facets of the First World War, and it would not be complete without this fictitious, but realistic portrait of a soldier's life in the trenches on the western front.

I was reading excerpts from "All Quiet On The Western Front" in class yesterday, with students staring at me, some of them understanding for the first time what it really meant to be a soldier in the trenches, sent out to die under the banner of nationalism - which was an entirely positi
Jonathan Ashleigh
Sep 24, 2016 Jonathan Ashleigh rated it it was amazing
Shelves: recent
“I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against one another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently, innocently slay one another.”

This quote sums this book up best. The main character is a modern soldier who fights in a war he considers senseless. Read this book because it is short and if you like it — read Johnny Got His Gun too.
Aug 27, 2016 Kim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This is a novel I’ve been meaning to read for years and I’m not really sure what took me so long. It may just have been that I’ve never been much of a one for war literature. In any event, I wish I’d read it years ago. Even though Remarque disavowed any political purpose in writing the work, it’s the quintessential anti-war novel. The unspeakable horror of trench warfare, the fear, the boredom and the alienation are all unflinchingly described. This is powerful stuff and while there are lighter
Aug 27, 2007 Paul rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who has seen war firsthand
This book is short, but a must-have read for those understanding the humanity of war. While I cannot even imagine fighting deep in the trenches of WWI, braving shell shock and constant, brazen assaults on my front lines, I can sincerely identify with his feelings as a two-tour veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

All military differences aside (at least this guy knew what his enemy looked like), the deep feelings when you lose one of your own are still dead on--even after all these years. Along wi
Farnoosh Farahbakht
نویسنده کتاب، "رمارک" در مصاحبه ای در مورد این اثر گفته است : به نظر من بدیهی می نمود که آدمها صلح طلب یا ضدجنگ باشند. همیشه فکر می کردم که همه انسان ها مخالف جنگ اند، تا آنکه دریافتم کسانی هم هستند که موافق آن اند، بخصوص کسانی که خود مجبور نیستند در آن شرکت کنند

در غرب خبری نیست، کتابی که خوندنش به هیج وجه با لذت همراه نخواهد بود اما باید خواند و با چهره حقیقی و کثیف جنگ رو به رو شد.داستان در قالب خاطراتی از جوانی 18 ساله که با تحریکات معلم خود با گروهی از همکلاسان برای شرکت در جنگ جهانی اول دا
Megan Baxter
May 19, 2014 Megan Baxter rated it really liked it
That war destroys lives is a truism. That it's dehumanizing, alienating, traumatizing - I would hope that these are readily recognized. And yet I fear we forget the simple horrors of war in rushes of excitement or romance or patriotism.

Note: The rest of this review has been withdrawn due to the changes in Goodreads policy and enforcement. You can read why I came to this decision here.

In the meantime, you can read the entire review at Smorgasbook
Apr 09, 2014 Marvin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Back in 1986, a friend of mine, who was a Vietnam War veteran asked me to go see the movie Platoon with him. As we walked out of the theater, he was unusually quiet but asked me what I thought of the film. I responded that I thought it was excellent but I also admitted that I thought parts were confusing for a war film. "Often I couldn't tell who was shooting at who." I said. He grabbed my arm and said excitedly."THAT IS WHAT IT WAS LIKE!"

Every war has its own uniqueness. It has its unique horro
Amy (shoutame)
Jun 13, 2016 Amy (shoutame) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, classics
This is by far the best book I have read so far this year. Absolutely breath-taking.

This is a historical fiction set during World War I. We follow the story of a small group of young boys who are taken from the classroom and drafted into the Germany army. They go from sitting at their school desks to laying facedown in the mud on the frontline, attempting to avoid being killed. As the story goes on each of these boys meets a tragic end, we see them through their training all the way up to their
Feb 05, 2016 Maureen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
There are already thousands of reviews for this deeply moving and heartbreaking book here on Goodreads, and I don't know that I could add anything new. It simply broke my heart. However I do feel really strongly that I should describe the vivid imagery that I'm left with.

Bright red poppies in bloodied fields
Where death stalked its victims.
It cared not for age, creed, or nationality

What would they have achieved in life,
These young men, with so much yet to experience,
So many dreams to fulfil
Feb 23, 2014 Nicole~ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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 shells, were destroyed by the war - epigraph from All Quiet on the Western Front.

EMR's 1929 bleak depiction of war portrays Germany's fundamental intent on total subjugation, and the patriotic call of the Fatherland to its impressionistic "Iron Youth
K.D. Absolutely
Dec 03, 2013 K.D. Absolutely rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006-2010)
Shelves: 1001-core, war
A good companion to Timothy Findley's The Wars. Why? Both of them are novels about WWI. But All Quiet on the Western Front is the German side and The Wars is the Allied side. Put them side by side in your mind. Run the stories in a parallel manner. You have a whole new novel with complete casts and both warring sides represented. How un-different the young soldiers thoughts are. How much they think that the same war, where their young comrades die left and right, to be senseless. Neither of them ...more
Jul 20, 2013 Leonard rated it it was amazing
The horror of poisoned skin and flesh, mangled arms and legs, whistling shells, hopeless moans, and ubiquitous filth complemented the sterile wall between Paul Baumer and his father and mother and sister when he was on leave. The war had destroyed his youth and any hunger for sunlight, twitter and soft skin. When he turned the schoolbook pages, he realized all the texts’ fragrances sweet or pungent had fled into the misty dawn. His past had fallen away and his future withered, leaving him in a l ...more
It has to be the defining novel of World War I and is told from the point of view of a German soldier fighting in the trenches of France. This is not a novel of romance, intrigue, and adventure; it is a stark and frightingly realistic description of what it must have been like trying to survive from one day to the next, and almost always failing. Difficult and disturbing to read, it nevertheless is a narrative of why war is horrible, and hopefully why the telling of it may help deter future wars ...more
This book is so raw and grusome that I'm sure a story like Paul's is real. I wasn't sure what to give this book because, well, it was just so hopelessly depressing. It made me so depressed that at times that I just had to put it down and breath. I don't regret reading it because I learned a lot about what war is really like but I just felt so hopeless about everything. If you are anything like me and can't handle a lot of hopelessness then have something like Winnie the Pooh on hand to cheer you ...more
Alice Poon
May 23, 2016 Alice Poon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This book was first published in 1929, and by the time the German Nazis came to power in 1933, it became a banned book and printed copies were burned (the excuse being that it was a betrayal of the German front-line soldier). The author subsequently went to live in Switzerland and in 1938 was stripped of his German citizenship.

The novel is a heartrending account of trench warfare during the First World War told in first-person from the perspective of the narrator, a nineteen-year old German sold
Parastoo sahebi
Jul 08, 2016 Parastoo sahebi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
بلند بلند حرف میزنم و باید هم حرف بزنم.رو ب طرف مرده می کنم و به او می گویم:"رفیق من نمی خواستم تو را بکشم.اگر این دفعه توی این گودال بپری و خیال بدی هم نداشته باشی نمی کشمت.تو قبلا برای من یک وهم بودی.یک موجود خیالی ک در ضمیرم جای گرفته بود و به دفاع از جان وادارم می کرد.من آن موجود خیالی را کشتم.ولی حالا برای نخستین بار می بینم ک تو هم آدمی هستی مثل خود من.همه ش به فکر نارنجک هایت ب فکر سرنیزه ات ب فکر تفنگت بودم ولی حالا زنت جلوی چشمم است و خودت و شباهت بین من و تو.مرا ببخش رفیق ما همیشه وقتی ...more
May 23, 2016 Josh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: high-five, 2016
A classic, there's no discounting that. If you think War and Peace was one of the earliest published accounts to the masses of war and its effect on man and society around him, then read this. Please. You'll never forget it.

My favorite quotes are as follows:

"I am young, I am twenty years old, yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against one another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently
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Around the Year i...: All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque 9 79 Aug 12, 2016 08:54AM  
Honors English II...: Book 8 Carver 1 3 Jun 08, 2016 07:25AM  
Goodreads Librari...: Please combine book editions 3 19 Apr 10, 2016 10:58AM  
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Why is this a classic? 30 771 Nov 29, 2015 09:33AM  
Catching up on Cl...: All Quiet on the Western Front - No Spoilers 26 67 Nov 07, 2015 11:21AM  
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Erich Maria Remarque is one of the best known and most widely read authors of German literature in the twentieth century.

Remarque's biography is essentially marked and his writing fundamentally influenced by German history of the twentieth century: Childhood and youth in imperial Osnabrück, World War I, the Weimar Republic, and most of all his exile in Switzerland and the United States. With the
More about Erich Maria Remarque...

Other Books in the Series

All Quiet on the Western Front/The Road Back/Three Comrades (3 books)
  • The Road Back
  • Three Comrades

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“I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against one another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently, innocently slay one another.” 547 likes
“But now, for the first time, I see you are a man like me. I thought of your hand-grenades, of your bayonet, of your rifle; now I see your wife and your face and our fellowship. Forgive me, comrade. We always see it too late. Why do they never tell us that you are poor devils like us, that your mothers are just as anxious as ours, and that we have the same fear of death, and the same dying and the same agony--Forgive me, comrade; how could you be my enemy?” 344 likes
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