1914: Fight The Good Fight: Britain, the Army and the Coming of the First World War

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9780593067604: 1914: Fight The Good Fight: Britain, the Army and the Coming of the First World War
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  One of Britain's foremost military historians has written a significant new history of the origins -- and the opening first few weeks fighting -- of what would become known as 'the war to end all wars'. Intensely researched and convincingly argued, Allan Mallinson explores and explains the grand strategic shift that occurred in the century before the war, the British Army's regeneration after its drubbings in its fight against the Boer, its almost calamitous experience of the first twenty days' fighting in Flanders, and the point at which the British Expeditionary Force -- the 'Old Contemptibles' -- took up the pick and the spade in the middle of September 1914, changing the war from one of movement into the now familiar image of the trenches and the coming of the Territorials, Kitchener's 'Pals', and ultimately the conscripts -- and of course the poets. And with them, a sense of pity and of futility.

     An ex-infantry and cavalry officer, Mallinson brings his experience as a professional soldier to bear on the individuals, circumstances and events and the result is a vivid, compelling new history of the beginnings of the conflict -- and one that speculates -- tantalizingly -- on what might have been.

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About the Author:

ALLAN MALLINSON is a former infantry and cavalry officer of thirty-five years' service. He is the author of the acclaimed Matthew Hervey series of historical novels, Light Dragoons, a history of four regiments of British Cavalry (one of which he commanded) and The Making of the British Army. As well as writing on defence matters for The Times, he writes for the Mail Online and is a regular reviewer for The Times, Spectator and Literary Review. He lives near Salisbury in Wiltshire.

Review:

"Mallinson uncovers a litany of rivalry and miscalculation. With the Great War's centenary commemorations on the horizon, he has produced a must-read for anyone who wants to know how Britain practically stumbled into one of the bloodiest conflicts in history." SUNDAY EXPRESS "Formidable and page-turning ... Mallinson's clinical examination of the 'what ifs' is as compelling as his account of the death of a small but professional army, scarficed to the incuriosity of our politicians and disinclination of military leaders to countenance any challange to what they believed were best laid plans." -- Michael Tillotson THE TIMES "Compelling and rigorously researched...paints a vivid picture... this is not dry military history. He tells the story through many eyes of those on the frontline, from general to Tommy. It's recounted through regimental histories and underpinned with his deep understanding of tactics ... offers unique insights on the planning, 'politicking' and fighting." DAILY EXPRESS "In the deluge of books to mark the centenary of the start of the Great War, it is refreshing to find one written by a former soldier who is also an accomplished military historian ... a vivid picture ... with his soldier's grasp of tactics and strategy, Mallinson describes with clarity and authority the opening weeks of the war." -- Simon Heffer DAILY MAIL "Mallinson writes with an exciting pen and a cool head and he understands war." -- Prof. Michael Clarke, Director General of the Royal United Services Institute The Times

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9780857500595: 1914: Fight The Good Fight: Britain, the Army & the Coming of the First World War

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ISBN 10:  0857500597 ISBN 13:  9780857500595
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9780593067611: 1914: Fight The Good Fight: Britain, the Army & the Coming of the First World War

Bantam..., 2013
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