Rendezvous With Death (Hardback)
Artists and Writers in the Thick of It 1914–1918
Book Of The Month!
Named as the Forces War Records' Book of the Month for December 2017
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This book sheds new light on the colourful personalities including Wilfred Owen, Rupert Brooke, Alan Seeger, Ivor Gurney, Edward Thomas, Isaac Rosenberg, Ralph Vaughan Williams and George Butterworth, all major figures among Englands creative artists during the First World War.
Thanks to the authors research and knowledge, the book is a very English story about the tragically short spring of English artistic creativity between 1910 and 1920; the greatest such renaissance since Shakespeare and Purcell in the 17th century. It focuses on these exceptional poets, composers and artists experiences in the front line and what resulted from these.
A short personal Preface records that the authors father, Sergeant Major Anthony Geraghty (later anglicized as Garrity) survived one year and 271 days on the front line with the British Expeditionary Force in France and Flanders including the Somme, in which he served alongside the composer Butterworth in 13th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry.
So what does this book reveal about these exceptional talents? Firstly,one is struck by the variety of backgrounds and motivations. Whilst many were inspired by romantic ideals of war and death, the life experiences that took them into the trenches were many and varied.Phil Curme
Secondly, in examining the circumstances in which they served and, in some cases - were killed, one is struck by the randomness and the
brutality. Clearly bullets, bombs and bayonets did not discriminate between those who had exceptional talent and those who did not.
Finally, creative output aside, this reviewer was given cause to reflect that, in other aspects, these are twelve individual stories just like the stories of the other 5.6 million service personnel who served with the British forces in the First World war – each forged by a common experience but every one unique.
Read the complete review here.
BOOK OF THE MONTH (January 2018)Spartacus Educational