Spanning from 1914-1918, the Great War was a catastrophe that engulfed the entire world. It caused an estimated 40 million casualties, ranking it among the deadliest conflicts in human history, and changed the course of the century. Every year, we unite to remember and honour those who sacrificed themselves to secure and protect our freedom.
Spanning from first-hand accounts to moving anthologies, we’ve compiled a selection of important reads that shed light on the events of WWI and help us remember those involved.
Lest We Forget by Stephen Liddell
Informative and sympathetically written, Lest We Forget provides an accessible overview of the First World War. Covering both life in the trenches and life on the Home Front, it draws out the key events and themes that occurred throughout the conflict and serves as a guide suitable for both introductory learners and military historians alike.
Unknown Soldiers by Neil Hanson
Amid an outpouring of national grief, the Unknown Soldier was laid to rest in Westminster Abbey as an anonymous symbol of all those lost without a trace in the carnage of the WWI battlefields.
Drawing on unpublished letters and diaries, as well as the testimonies of those who fought, died and mourned at home, the experiences of three unknown soldiers – a Briton, a German and an American – have been resurrected in this moving read. In a way that few other books ever have, the rare insight into these soldiers’ lives reveals the Great War in all its horror, tragedy and unforgettable detail.
Fighter Pilots of World War One by Robert Jackson
Fresh out of school and unprepared for the terrors that greeted them, this is the story of the fighter pilots of World War I.
In this detailed read, Robert Jackson takes you back to the heart of the action through the stories of some of the young men – British, French, American and German – who fought for the mastery of the sky between 1914-1918: the Aces whose names still hold significance today.
For Remembrance by A St. John Adcock
Published in 1918, this book is a biographical collection of war poems written by soldiers who lost their lives serving their country on the Western Front during the Great War.
The natural world, the danger of weapons and a sense of honour and patriotism all shine through in the verses quoted in this anthology from men who did not live to see their words inside it. Over 100 years after the Armistice, this collection remains a moving tribute to the lives of the fallen.
The War Diary of the Master of Belhaven by Hon. Ralph G. A. Hamilton
First published in 1924, this diary provides an extraordinary first-hand account of an artillery officer’s experience during the Great War.
Ralph Hamilton fought almost continuously throughout the war, including action in the epic battles at Loos, Ypres and the Somme. From the cold and the mud to the omnipresent shelling, he paints a picture of WWI with devastating authenticity.