Friday, November 03, 2006

Megiddo's Shadow

Megiddo's Shadow, by Arthur Slade


Sixteen year-old Edward is devastated when his older brother is killed in fighting in 1917. He lies about his age and joins the army, vowing to avenger his brother's death. However, when he gets to England he is assigned to train horses instead of to active combat. He is frustrated and longs to fight. Eventually he gets into the Lincolnshire Yeomanry, and is shipped to Palestine to fight the Turks in the push to Damascus. The real strength of this story, I think, is the exploration of the individual in the face of war. We join Edward on his psychological and emotional journey in trying to come to terms, not only with his brother's death and that of others that he knows and cares about, but also of his own role in the violence.

I think this book is probably one of the best works of World War fiction that I have read, and admittedly I don't read a lot of war fiction. However, I thought that the battle scenes and epic adventure elements were very well drawn, as were the smaller more personal elements. I could feel for the characters and also be horrified by the world in which they found themselves.

Highly recommended. For teens and adults.


Maggie said...

I told Art about your review! Bet he'll comment. ;)

Arthur Slade said...

Hah, no I won't!!

Oh, too late. So happy to hear you enjoyed the book. It was one of the hardest for me to write. Took so long and soooo much happens in it!
Art Slade

MadJenny said...

Wow! Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts and respond! I also love "Dust" and "Tribes".