Friday, November 23, 2012

Strange Meeting by Susan Hill

I've read several good WWI books for my reading challenge this year (The Light Between Oceans, The Summer of Katya (WWI was a small part of each of these books), and Birdsong to name a few), but this ranks right up there near the top.

John Hilliard has been wounded and spends some time recuperating at home.  He finds that he can not bear to be at home where no one understands what it is like at the front.  When he returns to the front, he knows very few of the officers left in his unit; most have been killed or disabled in the fighting.  He must share space with a newly arrived officer, David Barton.  At first Hilliard is angry about this; he wants to be alone.  But Barton and Hilliard become very close friends, even though they are very different.  Hilliard is very proper and straight laced and has never had a close friend, while Barton is very friendly and outgoing and everyone likes him.  There are scenes of life in the trenches and of fighting and even of the boredom in between the action.  But mostly it is about the friendship between these two men.  I enjoyed the writing style very much; it was easy to read and lyrical without being overdone.  I rate it 4 out of 5.


Kathy A. Johnson said...

Sounds like a good one, Cheryl. You're getting a good variety of books, aren't you?

Anna said...

I thought this book was very well done, too. I'm sure friendships that arise during war are different, and she made it feel believable.