Tales of World War 2
Many regard World War 1 as being the war which influenced the twentieth century most. However, World War 2 is the one most referred to because it was the last major conflict and affected so many in a variety of ways. In all the tales, survival is the driving force.
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Berneieres takes us to the Greek island of Caphallonia where Italian captain Corelli who is part of the occupying force, attempts to have a peaceful war.
Irene Nemirovsky takes us to occupied France in Suite Francaise where we gain insight into collaboration between the local population and the occupying forces as a means of survival.
The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje shares the last days of the war in Italy as a young nurse remains behind to nurse an English patient rescued by the Bedouin.
Barbara Towell’s A little Piece for Mother tells of the impact World War 2 Poland had on a young girl growing up in London after the war.
Ray Wooster sheds light on English home counties’ life in his ‘what if’ diary of young Billy who together with his friend John, join a messenger service, get captured by the Germans and end up working on a farm.
And not to be forgotten is that wonderful tome which many read but not quite finish or understand – Catch 22 by Jospeh Heller.