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Letters from a Lost Generation: First World War Letters of Vera Brittain and Four Friends

Letters from a Lost Generation First World War Letters of Vera Brittain and Four Friends This poignant work collects correspondence written from to between Vera Brittain and four young men her fiance Roland Leighton her younger brother Edward and their two close friends Victor

  • Title: Letters from a Lost Generation: First World War Letters of Vera Brittain and Four Friends
  • Author: Mark Bostridge Alan Bishop
  • ISBN: 9781555533793
  • Page: 311
  • Format: Hardcover
  • This poignant work collects correspondence written from 1913 to 1918 between Vera Brittain and four young men her fiance Roland Leighton, her younger brother Edward and their two close friends, Victor Richardson and Geoffrey Thurlow who were all killed in action during World War I The correspondence presents a remarkable and profoundly moving portrait of five idealiThis poignant work collects correspondence written from 1913 to 1918 between Vera Brittain and four young men her fiance Roland Leighton, her younger brother Edward and their two close friends, Victor Richardson and Geoffrey Thurlow who were all killed in action during World War I The correspondence presents a remarkable and profoundly moving portrait of five idealistic youths caught up in the cataclysm of war Spanning the duration of the war, the letters vividly convey the uncertainty, confusion, and almost unbearable suspense of the tumultuous war years They offer important historical insights by illuminating both male and female perspectives and allow the reader to witness and understand the Great War from a variety of viewpoints, including those of the soldier in the trenches, the volunteer nurse in military hospitals, and even the civilian population on the home front As Brittain wrote to Roland Leighton in 1915, shortly after he arrived on the Western Front Nothing in the papers, not the most vivid and heartbreaking descriptions, have made me realize war like your letters Yet this collection is, above all, a dramatic account of idealism, disillusionment, and personal tragedy as revealed by the voices of four talented schoolboys who went almost immediately from public school in Britain to the battlefields of France, Belgium, and Italy Linking each of their compelling stories is the passionate and eloquent voice of Vera Brittain, who gave up her own studies to enlist in the armed services as a nurse As World War I fades from living memory, these letters are a powerful and stirring testament to a generation forever shattered and haunted by grief, loss, and promise unfulfilled.

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      Published :2019-09-05T20:58:00+00:00

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    1. Mark Bostridge Alan Bishop

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    324 Comments

    1. For some reason, I have never gotten around to reading Vera Brittain’s classic work, “Testament of Youth,” but that is something I must amend in the future, after being introduced to this work though one of my reading groups. However, it may take me some time to get over this, as “Letters From a Lost Generation,” is moving, tragic and, I must warn you, will leave you feeling somewhat wrung out when you get to the end…The book consists of letters from and to Vera Brittain, and between [...]


    2. This is a book for people who read and loved Testament of Youth or Vera Brittain's other works. It's very personal and gives us insights into how the war was viewed by those taking part. They are from the upper classes so it's from a different point of view of the ordinary Tommy. Vera Brittain is an extraordinary woman. How she lived through what she did and survived is beyond me. A lesser person would have surely caved in. She lost all of those most dear to her heart and still she went on. I th [...]


    3. What a poignant and unbearably sad book at times.These are the letters during the First World War between Vera Brittain and her Brother, Fiance and Two friends.All of the men died and all of their hopes and dreams and Veras with them.The horrors of the trenches and the war are spoken about in a matter of fact way and is very moving.All of the men thought they would die but still had thoughts on what they wished to do after the war,which tragically did not happen.I have been meaning to read this [...]


    4. This book is made all the more heartbreaking because it is real. It isn't a fictionalised account of the horrors or World War I - it is a snapshot of the lives and feelings of Vera Brittain and four young men - her brother Edward, her fiance Roland and two other friends, Geoffrey and Victor - through correspondence which passed between them throughout the war. It demonstrates the waste of young life which characterised the Great War, and in fact all wars. This book remained with me when I closed [...]


    5. Letters from a Lost Generation, is a collection edited by Mark Bostridge and published in 2008, of the letters between Vera Brittain, her brother Edward, and their friends Roland Leighton, Victor Richardson and Geoffrey Thurlow. Both Edward and Roland sent their letters back to Vera for safe-keeping, so the collection of letters between those three is almost complete (barring some letters between Vera and Edward in the last year of Edward’s life). Many of Vera’s letters to Victor and Geoffre [...]


    6. A moving compilation of letters. I would have liked to have seen more of Vera's letters to her brother in the last year of his war. But, perhaps, he failed to send those letters back to his sister as he had sent the previous ones. I suppose, as an American, I took some umbrage at their class distinctions which arose occasionally. Roland, Vera's fiancée and "leader of the 'three musketeers'", came across some graves (whether a cemetery or just random graves), was somewhat appalled that a major c [...]


    7. If you've read Testament of Youth, Vera Brittain's classic war memoir/autobiography you will already know the story, but hearing the actual voices of her and the young men raise this book to another level. In their late teens when the first world war breaks out, we see their innocent nineteenth century ideals of the glory and honour of war shattered by the reality they face and the death of everyone they know.A poignant, shattering, heartbreaking reminder of the death of innocence and the true b [...]


    8. Usually, I'm not much of an audiobook reader (listener?), as my mind wanders and I have trouble focusing on what I'm hearing for a long time. Neither am I an epistolary novel reader, for about the same reasons I get characters mixed up and get bored quite easily. But I tackled this audiobook because of my interest in WWI and, I must say, because my eyesight is getting worse and worse and I might just have to get used to listening to books or not read at all. Anyway, it was a great way to start. [...]


    9. A really interesting read for anyone who's read 'Testament of Youth' and wants to learn more about the conjunctions of these five young people flung into a world that nothing could prepare them for. The contrast in the letters and what it reveals about their characters is fascinating, from the very exploratory, didactic, only occasionally playful nature of Vera's own letters, which are very like her brother Edward's and also her fiance's, to Victor's which are very considerate and thoughtful if [...]


    10. This was a wonderfully written, but heartbreaking, collection of letters between Vera Brittain, her brother, and 3 friends of theirs. They were all quite articulate young people.At the beginning of the correspondence, they were quite enthusiastic about the war, believing that it would end war forever, and that it was necessary, and even desirable, because it would shake England out of her complacency. The young men were going to do the patriotic, heroic thing and they didn't want to be late gett [...]


    11. The contents of the letters written by Vera, Roland, Edward, Victor and Geoffrey will make you smile and cry; you will feel pain for their losses, fear for their lives and pray with Vera that her boys will make it through the War; you will feel angry and powerless while reading the description of young men killed or died of wounds, and you will think of the anguish that thousands of families felt when a telegram would destroy their hope: "Regret to inform" but also their relief when a postcard o [...]


    12. Don't read this without a box of hankies at hand. Obviously time has dated the letters, which can seem rather patronising occasionally, but if you can get past that, this gives you a moving and very personal insight into what it was like (if anyone can imagine anything like the Great War without experiencing it) to be separated by war, to endure war, and what coping mechanisms you used to survive. You can't read it in one go, it's a book to be dipped in and out of, but it's a truly amazing and i [...]


    13. Incredible to realize that these letters were written by teenagers. Try and picture American teenagers of today doing the same. HahahahahahahahahaThe whole story of Vera and her lost boys is just so heartbreaking, and all the worse because you know it was repeated literally millions of times over, in one of the most stupid and unnecessary of wars.


    14. Again like its twin book testament of youth.autiful and heartbreaking. I recommend reading testament of youth first then this one for a full understanding of the letters and the circumstances in which they were written.


    15. A very moving and tragic epistolary audiobook containing a collection of letters exchanged between four young people during World War I. The narrative was very well done, and I enjoyed the old songs of the period.


    16. Read all her biography books on WW1 this was very good added more to the story especially her own tragic love story


    17. On of the most moving books I have ever read. Real letters and real stories written between four individuals. Changed my impression of this era of history.


    18. Letters from a Lost Generation, is a collection edited by Mark Bostridge and published in 2008, of the letters between Vera Brittain, her brother Edward, and their friends Roland Leighton, Victor Richardson and Geoffrey Thurlow. Both Edward and Roland sent their letters back to Vera for safe-keeping, so the collection of letters between those three is almost complete (barring some letters between Vera and Edward in the last year of Edward’s life). Many of Vera’s letters to Victor and Geoffre [...]


    19. I feel wrung out after finishing this extraordinary collection of letters. I've read both Testament of Youth and Chronicle of Youth, but I wanted to explore more of this story. There's nothing like reading actual, first-person accounts of the men and women who served in the Great War. To imagine the conditions of the trenches and dugouts that these men wrote from is simply astounding. And there is nothing more chilling than a sudden stop to the letters. Vera writes often about the agonizing dela [...]


    20. I definitely think it took me way too wrong to read this though I know why. it's because I had set it aside to read other things and until recently was only reading it when I was deciding what to read next.I feel like at the end the letters got one sided though I suspect this may be due to Vera's brother Edward possibly losing her letters and they were never found after his death. I feel a great sympathy for Vera having lost her brother fiancé and friends to the war. I feel horrible that these [...]


    21. Contains letters between and among Vera Brittain and four men: her brother, her fiancé, and two other soldiers -- all the mean were killed in World War I. Amazing how literate and mature they all were at the age of 20 or so! Sad and sometimes funny; not very descriptive on the war itself.Well worth reading. Could be 4.5 stars.



    22. This is a compilation of the letters between Vera Brittain and Roland Leighton (her fiance), Edward Brittain (her brother), and two friends, Victor and Geoffrey. But the overwhelming bulk of the letters are with Roland and Edward.Roland and Edward both sent her letters to them back to her for safe-keeping, so the book has both sides of the conversation, which is terrific. And the correspondence is a nice addition to Testament of Youth, Vera Brittain's WWI memoir, which used snippets of many of t [...]


    23. Ce recueil de lettres complète parfaitement Testament of Youth, de Vera Brittain. Il s'agit d'un témoignage brut, bouleversant, incroyablement puissant.C'est un précieux témoignage de la guerre au quotidien, que ce soit du point de vue de Vera, d'abord étudiante à Oxford puis volontaire dans les VAD et merveilleuse épistolière, ou de celui de ces quatre jeunes hommes, à la fois très caractéristiques de la société edwardienne (notamment dans les distinctions entre classes sociales) e [...]


    24. I really miss writing and receiving letters. We used to share so much. I can remember exchanging intense letters with my fiance and being a little awkward when we were face-to-face because we had shared so much and it was difficult to discuss the same things in person. I also shared so much with my friends and discovered things about myself I couldn't have any other way.So this book is precious to me for that reason. I doubt future biographers or historians will find the same wealth of material [...]


    25. This is a fascinating book and, because the letters in it are edited and abridged, it can be read in small chunks or large sections which makes it very accessible.And then he died. But that is not a spoiler as the book chronicles the letters between Vera Brittain, her brother and their 3 friends through the first world war. Where other books make an effort to try to describe the horrors of trench war and the dreadful conditions the soldiers had to endure this book looks at the 1st war through th [...]


    26. There are certain books you like, certain books you love, certain books you escape to, and then, every blue moon there is a book that is so monumental a read it creates a bend in the road. Your life is then marked as before or after that read. In no particular order, mine are Northanger Abbey, The Silver Chair, Catching Fire, The Seven Year Old Wonder Book, and now Letters From a Lost Generation.I was drawn to this book, I confess, after seeing the movie adaptation of Testament of Youth. Reading [...]


    27. WHat a read! I learnt so much about WW1 both from the point of view of the men who fought and those left behind. I couldn't get over how much the men wanted to be posted to the Front. The letters give a fantastic insight into the daily rountine of war, the billeting and catering as well as the fighting.I didn't like Vera's brother, finance or friends though! They were very stuck up and wrote about what a great loss to the country the death of men of their kind were compared to the insignificance [...]


    28. This book gave me a terrible feeling in the belly in some places, because these letters, albeit edited, are the real words and thoughts of four young men who died so terribly young in World War One. Their letters range from whimsical to describing the boredom of trench warfare and their very young ideas on fighting for glory--and poetry, particularly from Roland Leighton, whose "Villanelle" is incredibly powerful. Of course, without Vera Brittain, these letters and these men would simply be four [...]


    29. This was a hard collection to get started with, but pretty soon I was hooked on the narrative of Vera and her friends. Of course I knew what would happen from the beginning -- this is history, after all -- but reading about how each soldier faced his death in his own words and how Vera handled the news was fascinating as well as heartbreaking. Perhaps it's our natural human curiosity about death, but I kept imagining what I would do in her shoes, and part of me still can't fathom the personal co [...]


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