Book - 1986
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An extraordinarily vivid picture of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, which marked a turning point in Canada's emergence as an independent nation. One of the best accounts of Canada's decisive role in the First World War. Copyright © Libri GmbH. All rights reserved.
Publisher: Toronto : McClelland and Stewart, 1986
ISBN: 9780771013393


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Nov 10, 2019

10 out of 10 - can’t figure out the stars 臘‍♀️- ⭐️ ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
A GREAT BOOK! Not an easy read (emotional; anger, sadness, pride...) but in my opinion, as Berton, says, it tells not just what happened but also what it was like, and because of that, I found it to be excellent and engaging. Not full of mundane minutiae that is unimportant and quickly and easily forgotten. Stories hit emotional cords and this does that in spades.

There is so much to unpack: Darwin, the grandson of Charles Darwin, was in this battle, the new science of sound ranging that the British scoffed at and the Canadians felt worthy of developing, the Saskatchewan youth who could lift 600 lbs... so many human details that were so unexpected, but is what made the book such a compelling read.

It is an accounting of which I will never forget.

A great book club and read aloud choice!

Jun 15, 2016

An excellent book on the WWI battle of Vimy Ridge which was an all Canadian attack. The author puts a human face to the battle. In addition the author does not overly romanticize the people or the battle. This book should be read by all Canadians

bibliotechnocrat Dec 03, 2015

Berton, himself a Canadian icon, here delivers a moving (and occasionally gruesome) narrative history of the most significant battle - from Canada's point of view - of the "Great War." Still considered the milestone at which Canada reached a kind of independent maturity (in the same way that Gallipoli is thought of as Australia's defining moment), Vimy was the occasion where Canadians showed what they were made of. But Berton is not guilty of romanticizing the conflict. On the contrary, he presents the sickening waste that hubris and stupidity lead to. His concluding line sums up this attitude: "Was it worth it? The answer, of course, is no." I'd like to think we've learned something from history - and in fact it is hard to imagine Canadians today signing up for war with the absurd enthusiasm Berton describes - but we can't learn from history without knowing something about it. This important book is therefore well worth your time.

rb3221 Jul 30, 2015

A GREAT BOOK. This is a story of when Canada came of age, a cornerstone of building a nation. The book is well written and organized into seven chapters on the build-up and five chapters on the battle. It is a very moving story and told very well by Pierre Berton that includes both the misery and the triumph as told through the eyes of the soldiers. Burton has written it as an eye-witness account and not a history book of dates and facts. His extensively researched book allows the reader to see, hear, smell and feel what it was like with many first hand accounts. Details that include the knee deep mud, the incredible noise from the bombs, the blankets full of lice and the rat infested land.
Truly a unique story with a distinctive Canadian perspective and a must read for every Canadian that will make you proud. But in the final analysis, Berton leaves the reader with the question "was it worth it?"

Nov 14, 2012

Berton's best work. Puts a human face on a war increasingly difficult to relate to because of the passage of time. Puts Canada's role in establishing its international identity in historical perspective. A great read

Nov 14, 2012

Excellent account, easy and engaging to read.

Aug 03, 2012

A very good book with many firsthand accounts of life at the front during WWI. Must be taken with a grain of salt- some facts have since been proven untrue.

Jul 13, 2011

Berton's almost hour by hour account of the Battle of Vimy Ridge where Canada was forged as one Nation out of many different peoples.

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