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The Book of War Letters: 100 Years of Private Canadian Correspondence Paperback – April 19, 2005

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: McClelland & Stewart (April 19, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0771035578
  • ISBN-13: 978-0771035579
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 6.3 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,759,265 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“The letters chosen by the Grescoes are usually brief, ordinarily simple, but almost always extraordinarily powerful.… They are wonderful, a testimony to the Canadian spirit in the most difficult of times and circumstances.”
Globe and Mail

From the Hardcover edition.

From the Inside Flap

The second volume in a 3-book series

Duress ? the extreme experience war produces ? brings out the most remarkable human qualities, and letters written in wartime contain some of the most intense emotion imaginable. This anthology includes letters that date as far back as the Boer War (which began in 1899) and extend up to 2002, when Canadian peacekeepers served in Afghanistan. Between are letters from the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, and a number of peacekeeping missions. It contains some of the most powerful writing that Canadians ? whether reassuring loved ones, recounting the bitter reality of battle, or describing the appalling conditions of combat?have ever committed to the page.

The letters Canadians have written during wartime are proud and self-deprecating, stoic and complaining, brave and fearful, tender and violent, funny and poignant. The Book of War Letters tells us something about what it means to be Canadian, and what it means to be alive. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Freelance journalist Audrey Grescoe teamed up with her husband and novelist Paul Grescoe to compile and edit The Book Of War Letters: 100 Years Of Private Canadian Correspondence. This is an impressive collection of letters from Canadian soldiers beginning with the Boer War of 1899, through the First World War, Second World War, the Korean War, and the various "peace keeping missions" of the last half of the twentieth century and the first years of the twenty first century, including action in Afghanistan overthrowing the Taliban and searching out the Al Queda networks. Showcased are excerpts recounting the bitter realities of combat, the often appalling conditions of the war zones, reassurances for love ones back home, and the letters of condolence written by officers and chaplains when a loved one was wounded or died. Although this is a century long collection of Canadian wartime correspondences, these letters offer a universal understanding of what soldiers in combat from any nation in any conflict were struggling to relate to their people back home. The Book Of War Letters is a seminal work and strongly recommended for inclusion into any personal or academic Military Studies reference collection and supplemental reading list.
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