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All Quiet on the Western Front
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April 2019: History > All Quiet on the Western Front -- 5 stars

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message 1: by Shelly (last edited Apr 21, 2019 05:19PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Shelly | 515 comments All Quiet on the Western Front 5 stars
powerful, relevant, frightening, insightful, beautifullywritten

I recently spent a few days in Kansas City for a meeting and had the chance to visit the World War One Museum. Prior to my visit, my understanding of WWI was limited, but a few hours at the museum really helped me understand its causes, the course and the consequences. When entering the museum, you walk across a glass walkway that is several feet above a field of poppies, 9,000 poppies to represent the 9 million combatants killed in the war.

I have read a good deal of WWII historical fiction put very little WWI, so after my visit to the museum I decided to read All Quiet on the Western Front. This relatively short book is so simple and so powerful. By focusing on one soldier, what he endures, and how he struggles to understand his present and his future (if he survives), Remarque makes it very clear that war kills the survivors.... The Lost Generation.

Although the book is about a German soldier, it could have been about a French, British, or Russian soldier. Trench warfare was bullets, bombs, gas, mud, bayonets, starvation, and disease on both sides of No Man's Land. And although it was written about WWI, the death of human life during and after the war has been repeated in never ending cycles.

Many say that everyone should read this book, maybe then we wouldn't have war. I am not that naïve.

Booknblues | 5313 comments It is a great book. I loved it.

Idit | 1028 comments I agree with you both. It is a great book.
He made the terror (and craziness) of being a soldier at war feel so real and very universal

message 4: by Nikki (new)

Nikki | 661 comments I read this (in German, for a language class) at school in the UK as a teenager & still remember its powerful description of the pointless brutality of war, and how shockingly young the soldiers were (probably only a year or two older than me when I read it...). A great book, I'm glad to see others appreciating it too.

Teodora Paslaru | 149 comments I also loved this book. I've read it in high school, but it stays with me until this day. It was one of the first books about war (any war) I've read and it opened my appetite for this category of literature.

message 6: by annapi (new)

annapi | 4851 comments This is one of those books I know I should read but have never picked up. One of these days!

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