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This Time Tomorrow Paperback – April 15, 2014
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About the Author
Rupert Colley was born one Christmas Day, which means, as a child, he lost out on presents. Nonetheless, looking back on it, he lived a childhood with a "silver spoon in my mouth" - brought up in a rambling manor house in the beautiful Devon countryside. It's been downhill ever since.
He was a librarian for a long time, a noble profession. Then he started a series called History In An Hour, "history for busy people", which he sold to HarperCollins UK.
Rupert now lives in London with his wife, two children and dog (a fluffy cockapoo) and writes historical fiction, mainly 20th century war and misery. Historical fiction with heart.
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Colley, founder of the History-in-an-Hour Harper Collins series, is able to keep the reader interested in his characters as we follow them through their various war-related experiences. The descriptions of trench warfare are particularly heart-stopping.
There was one scene that is told via flashback during an 1988 interview that at first didn't seem to make sense to me: why have a peripheral character suddenly describe the book's next major scene? Why not leave it on the timeline?
But then I realized that it made perfect sense to show that the horrific event in which this character was forced to take part continued to haunt him well into his 90's. And after reading this section I almost wished there had been more scenes like this one that switched back and forth between timelines -- it was extremely effective.
Every once in a while I thought Colley was setting up his characters along conventional lines but then they would do something completely surprising; they are very real people.
The difference between non-fiction and good historical fiction is this: non-fiction presents the facts while historical fiction brings the reader into the room, so to speak. Colley manages to do both: the historical setting is perfectly accurate and the reader sees it up close. If you want to learn about the Great War, go ahead and read Colley's World War One in an Hour (or for specific British issues, Hochschild's To End All Wars). But if you are up for a cinematic view of British soldiers on the Western Front and the devastating issues they faced in the trenches and out, read This Time Tomorrow.
While this is a fictional story so much of it describes what really happens when country battles country.
This is the first oil in a series of 3 but can also be read as a standalone story. I could hardly wait to read "The Unforgiving Sea" and complete both books within a few days.
The plot was well thought out, the characters were real, I could see how the different situations could have occurred, again, this was to Colley's credit. An old time war story turned into a much greater story. It didn't turn out as I expected and for me, that made a far more stimulating read. It was interesting to compare then to now, the limited weapons, the limited medical care really made me stop and realize the horrors experienced and loss felt by all in this battle.
It is a wonderful book, take the time to become a part of this family, I will recommend the book.
There were times the book seemed to drag on a little bit, but at the same time, I'm sure for the characters in the book, (as well as for the actual soldiers in WWI,) the war seemed to drag on and on.
This was not my usual read, but overall, I enjoyed it.
Brothers,friendships,families,sisters,love & war.
Will now read the next title in the saga & would recommend to anyone to do the same.