Going to the Wars: A Journey in Various Directions

Going to the Wars: A Journey in Various Directions

by John Verney


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“My brother officers. Are they human?” Thus reads the first journal entry of twenty-three-year-old John Verney, graduate of Eton and Oxford, lover of modern art and literature, who has, almost on a whim, joined a part-time cavalry regiment of the British Army in 1937. At the outbreak of World War II two years later, Verney arrives in the Middle East and there learns, almost in spite of himself, to be a soldier. In 1943, he becomes a parachutist and leads a “drop” into Sardinia to attack German airfields. His adventures there—two weeks wandering through enemy territory, his capture, and his eventual escape—are brilliantly told.

Woven into the fabric of this narrative of a young man growing reluctantly to maturity and coming to terms with military life, are Verney’s thoughts and feelings about his wife, Lucinda, and the child he has never seen, and his longing to return to them.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781589881310
Publisher: Dry, Paul Books, Incorporated
Publication date: 01/15/2019
Pages: 250
Sales rank: 800,789
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

John Verney (1913–1993) was a writer, painter, and illustrator. An assistant film director, officer in the North Somerset Yeomanry, and newlywed at the outbreak of war in 1939, he subsequently served in the Royal Armoured Corps and the fledgling Special Air Service. He fought in Syria, Egypt, Sardinia, and Italy. His other military adventures in Italy are told in his book A Dinner of Herbs , also published by Paul Dry Books.

Table of Contents

Part One: Prelude and Fugue

1. "We never smoke during battle"

2. Lucinda

Part Two: Amateur

3. Zion

4. Araby

5. "Our own choice yeomanry division"

6. "Thumbs up! Tiggerty-boo! Up the Bible class!"

7. "Let battle commence. . ."

Part Three: Regular

8. Desert and Delta

9. The back of the front

10. Beachscape

Part Four: Irregular

11. Let it be Sardinia

12. The Submarine

13. The Approach

14. The Attack

15. The March

16. The Enemy

17. Intermezzo

Part Five: Finale

18. The seventh square

19. The pattern completed

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