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From the City, from the Plough

Imperial War Museum Wartime Classics
Narrated by: Matt Addis
Length: 7 hrs and 51 mins
4 out of 5 stars (5 ratings)

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Summary

Spring 1944, the south coast of England. The Fifth Battalion, Wessex Regiment, wait patiently and nervously for the order to embark. There is boredom and fear, comedy and pathos as the men all drawn from different walks of life await the order to move. 

With an economy of language that belies its emotional impact, From the City, from the Plough is a vivid and moving account of the fate of these men as they embark for the beaches of Normandy and advance into France, where the battalion suffers devastating casualties.

Based on Alexander Baron's own wartime experience, From the City, from the Plough was originally published to wide acclaim and reportedly sold over one million copies. This new edition of the 1948 classic includes a contextual introduction from IWM which sheds new light on the dramatic true events that so inspired its author. 

©2019 Alexander Baron, The Imperial War Museum (P)2019 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

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A sobering and uplifting tale

As someone who doesn't usually read war stories, I was riveted by and thoroughly enjoyed this book. The introduction does a fantastic job of bringing home to you how special it is, a second world war story that is utterly of it's time, with the real war experience of the author clear in everything the men go through and their responses to it. Addis's narration is perfect, giving individual voices and character to everyone we meet, and managing to convey the huge range of emotions Baron has forced his battalion to endure. We follow the 5th Battalion through training in England, to Dday, and into France, and though the battalion is fictional, the scenarios they face are all very very real.
Having finished it, I'm feeling a little melancholy- as a child of the 90s it's not often I'm properly reminded of the realities of WW2.
A sobering and uplifting tale, would highly recommend.

2 people found this helpful