Edmund Blunden: Fall In, Ghosts Selected War Prose
Edmund Blunden (1896-1974) moved among the ghosts of the Great War every day of his long life, having survived the battles of Ypres and the Somme. His classic prose memoir, Undertones of War, and his early edition of Wilfred Owen’s poems were just two examples of the ways in which he sought to convey his war experience, and to keep faith with his comrades in arms.
This selection of Blunden’s prose about the First World War includes the complete text of De bello germanico, his first, lively sketch of the war as he lived it in 1916. Deeply informed by his reading of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature, and equally by his knowledge of the countryside, Blunden’s vivid prose summons up for us what was human and natural in that most unnatural of environments, the battlefields of the Western Front.
“This anthology of shorter pieces collected by Robyn Marsack, who edited the standard selection of Blunden’s verse for Carcanet in 1982, is very welcome in its own right … these essays (gathered into a handsome paperback with helpful notes, chronology and an authoritative introduction) generally show [Blunden] at his most plainspoken.” – John Greening, TLS