It Was the War of the Trenches


It Was the War of the Trenches Art Spiegelman's Picks
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Product Description

A dark examination of World War I delves into the human cost of the war and the insanity of war by focusing on the doughboys on their day-to-day missions rather than the causes of the war, the politics, the strategies or the battles.

Editorial Reviews

"The only thing that interests me is man and his suffering, and it fills me with rage," writes Tardi in his foreword. Hence this thoroughly researched shock-and-awe parade of fictionalized situations-to call them vignettes implies too much dignity-based on World War I battlefield accounts. In muddy despair leavened only by the bitterest humor, his French soldiers stumble and curse their way toward death by gun, grenade, mortar, or execution (for failing to obey orders). The rat race of the war has rendered these men disposable, so the rotting corpses of every soldier's unlucky buddies clutter up the trenches, the barbed wire, and the torn-up countryside. Some soldiers even induce gangrene so they can have an amputation and be sent home. Trenches was first published in 1993, and only a few chapters have appeared in English. VERDICT Originally inspired by his grandfather's first-person stories, this is not a formal history but a masterful graphic and visceral tone poem about war. Tardi has won virtually every French comics award, and his intricate black, white, and gray work suggests Bill Mauldin's Willie and Joe but much, much nastier. Recommended for older teens and up.-M.C. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

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