To the Last Ridge : The World War I Experiences of W.H.Downing Paperback
by W.H. Downing
Written just after the heat of the battle and in the language of the time, this is the personal account of an ordinary soldier's experience of one of the most horrific series of battles ever fought.
Fleurbaix, Bapaume, Beaumetz, Lagincourt, Bullecourt, The Menin Road, Villers-Bretonneux, Peronne and Mont St.
Quentin. Downing describes the mud, the rats, the constant pounding of the guns, the deaths, the futility, but also the humour and the heroism of one of the most compelling periods in world history.
His writing is spare but vivid, and presents a graphic description of an ordinary person's struggle to survive.
Walter Downing was a Melbourne law student before fighting on the Western Front, where he won the Military Medal.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 218 pages, map
- Publisher: Grub Street
- Publication Date: 01/08/2002
- Category: True war & combat stories
- ISBN: 9781904010203
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Review by denmoir
This is a short book of reminiscences of a soldier's time on the Western Front in world war II. The author speaks proudly of the prowess of the Australian battalions, tells a few stories of he and his mate Bluey up to no good on leave and gives some of the most graphic descriptions of the foot-soldier's experience that I have read; you feel the sheer weariness, the cold, the hunger, the physical discomfort that never seems to end and you glimpse the joy of slaughter.