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Historian and novelist Best, former fiction critic for the Financial Times, offers a sophisticated presentation of the effects of the Great War's final week on its military and civilian participants. Day by day, he presents firsthand accounts from a spectrum of familiar and unfamiliar sources. On November 5, 1918, Scots Guards Pvt. Stephen Graham took part in an attack with an elite British division, while American artillery Capt. Harry Truman picked flowers to send his fiancée and contemplated running for Congress when-and if-he got home. On November 8, Evelyn Blücher, an Englishwoman married to a German prince, feared an outbreak of riots or revolution in Germany. And on November 11, Armistice Day, a crowd of Australians celebrated by storming Boulogne's red light district to the battle cry of "let's fuck 'em free!" What might have been merely a kaleidoscopic series of vignettes is given shape and focus by Best's skill at paraphrasing the narratives and synergizing the experiences of those who lived through "the greatest day in history," knowing they had survived the deadliest war up to then-and suddenly asking, "What happens now?" 16 pages of b&w photos. (Nov.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.