Over the Top

Over the TopExcerpt Of The Trench One Dead German Was Lying On His Back, With A Rifle Sticking Straight Up In The Air, The Bayonet Of Which Was Buried To The Hilt In His Chest Across His Feet Lay A Dead English Soldier With A Bullet Hole In His Forehead This Tommy Must Have Been Killed Just As He Ran His Bayonet Through The German Rifles And Equipment Were Scattered About, And Occasionally A Steel Helmet Could Be Seen Sticking Out Of The Mud At One Point, Just In The Entrance To A Communication Trench, Was A Stretcher On This Stretcher A German Was Lying With A White Bandage Around His Knee, Near To Him Lay One Of The Stretcher Bearers, The Red Cross On His Arm Covered With Mud And His Helmet Filled With Blood And Brains Close By, Sitting Up Against The Wall Of The Trench, With Head Resting On His Chest, Was The Other Stretcher Bearer He Seemed To Be Alive, The Posture Was So Natural And Easy, But When I Got Closer, I Could See A Large, Jagged Hole In, His Temple The Three Must Have Been Killed By The Same Shell Burst The Dugouts Were All Smashed In And Knocked About, Big Square Cut Timbers Splintered Into Bits, Walls Caved In, And Entrances Choked Tommy, After Taking A Trench, Learns To His Sorrow, That The Hardest Part Of The Work Is To Hold It In Our Case This Proved To Be So The German Artillery And Machine Guns Had Us Taped Ranged For Fair It Was Worth Your Life To Expose Yourself An Instant Don T Think For A Minute That The Germans Were The Only Sufferers, We Were Clicking Casualties So Fast That You Needed An Adding Machine To Keep Track Of Them Did You Ever See One Of The Steam Shovels At Work On The Panama Canal, Well, It Would Look Like A Hen Scratching Alongside Of A Tommy Digging In While Under Fire, You Couldn T See Daylight Through The Clouds Of Dirt From His Shovel After Losing Three Out Of Six Men Of Our Crew, We Managed To Set Up Our Machine Gun One Of The Legs Of The Tripod Was Resting On The Chest Of A Half Buried Body When This book was written in 1917 and must be accepted and judged by the time in was written, taking into consideration the use of language of the time, the culture, societal norms and so on Arthur Guy Empey was born in Ogden Utah in 1883 and he died in 1963 in Kansas Apparently he was angered by the failure of America to act and enter the War so he went off to England to join up He wrote the book when he returned to the U.S after being wounded and discharged by the British Army He wrote this when his experiences of the war were fresh in this mind and relevant to the Americans about ready to enter the war He lays out what happened from the day he joined the British Army to his return home He gives a day by day description of life in the trenches, the weaponry used various British Military regiments, description of
This book was first published in 1917 and was a best seller at the time It should be recognised that Empey was replicating his experiences of war and not writing a fiction novel so he portrays his experiences bluntly, just as they were The book is very fast paced, exciting and to the point It is fairly graphic but not unnecessarily so It clearly conveys the traumas that every Private experienced during this war Empey touches on the horrific reality of war and talks about his day to day experiences of trench warfare, rations, lice or cooties and friends dying before your eyes However, he als
Clearly the publisher doesn t believe in editors or proof readers, which is extremely unfortunate. For all the horror the narrator experiences as an American fighting for the British in World War I, he has a surprisingly sterile view of things Author Empey spares no time to dissect his circumstances He only lays out events as they happen in a blunt, journalistic fashion, detouring only to make some chest thumping comment about defeating the Germans.Make no mistake, this i
I have read a good part of this book and have come to the conclusion that I really wanted to read Her Privates We I have since had a discussion with my son and he confirmed itThis book has some instances where people should grieve and be outraged This soldier s attitude is well, let s get on with our adventure He volunteers for so many training
I was quite disappointed to see that the Kindle reprint of this classic included all the photo captions from the original but none of the photos With that said, it s easy to understand how this book became a runaway bestseller It s well written, skates carefully around the gory details of combat but is also full of wry trench humor It was written by the guy so many future
A good read I was very disappointed to note that this reprint included all the captions from the book, but none of the photos themselves With that said, it s easy to understand why this book became a runaway bestseller Full of wry trench humor and personal stories of the aut
This book provides a unique description of trench warfare during World War I Was written by an American, who, angered by the American failure to respond to the sinking of the Lusitania, resigns from the New Jersey National Guard, travels to England, and enlists in the British Army Serves in the trenches Is wounded After several months of convalescence, he is medically discharged, returns to America, and writes this book Wrote it to provide Americans, now in the war, some understanding of combat as it was being currently being fought to prepare them for what their soldiers would face on the Western Front His description the trench warfare is vivid, graphic, realistic Is an unsurpassed account of WWI from the perspective of an individual frontline infantryman Empey has a novelist s ability to convey a true sense of place has a fine eye for the significant detail, an understanding of the importance of the mundane He tells us everything about his life in the trenches how he dressed, how he was equipped, what he ate, ho
Just to be clear, I purchased an original edition of this book in a second hand store It s copyright is 1917 and it has the original cloth bound cover GoodReads does not currently have this edition listed and I, for some reason, am unable to add it.Given the time in which the book was written and that it was not written by a professional author, it reads pretty well It s simple and easy to follow, though some of the events related are obviously meant as propaganda and at least partly to reassure the potential young recruits of the comparatively inexperienced U.S army that the war wasn t as terrible as they might fear.What I liked best about the book was that it gave me a pretty good idea of what it would have been like for an American to join the British army in the First World War The characterization of the Tommies was endearing, though a little simplistic and never went into very much depth They weren t fully fleshed out even when they were the subjects of one of the anecdotes This, I think, can be chalked up to the inexperienced nature of the author.Over the Top is not a history book I think it would be fare to say that in large measure it is a fictitious account of the experiences of the man who wrote it Real events are contained in the book, but not everything in the book sounds quite right So
While there are certainly shades of propaganda running through Empey s account of his time in the British Army, as a call to arms to his fellow Americans, Over The Top is still not as in your face as Uncle Sam s or Kitchener s finger To me, this memoir is a valuable recount of life in the trenches because it was written relatively shortly after leaving them Empey does not shy away from the darker details of life at war although certainly he omits the extensive level of gruesomeness that later memoirs would introduce and I can t think anyone who calls this simply an adventure lark remembers reading the several times Empey recalls a man s brains spilling out, or taking a handful of them unintentionally He doesn t go on about how this makes him feel at the time, but one mustn t fail to grasp the starkness of such an image It undoubtedly affected him, even if he has neglected to tell us of the effect in an effort to buck up patriotism and enthusiasm for the war.I enjoyed this W

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  • Paperback
  • Over the Top
  • Arthur Guy Empey
  • English
  • 27 November 2017
  • 9780898756173