Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Men at Arms - post II

Waugh’s style is to set the story in a serious and totally believable framework and then work in some clever moments of humour that never become just hollow comic moments.

The politics of the army divide not just between rich and poor, officer and probationary office but also along age lines. With his knee damaged Guy feels even older than he is and as they move to Southend-on-Sea for training he feels lonely and isolated from the rest of his fellow soldiers.

He meets his ex-wife and seems to slay that ghost but all around he is trapped by his past, to a certain extent by his rigid Catholic faith as well as his sense of sleepwalking through to face the war in France.

More tomorrow…

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