Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Richer Dust: Review

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A Richer Dust: Family, Memory and the Second World War, by Robert Calder, is a touching, sad story of a Canadian soldier who returns from the dehumanizing of WWII only to find his wife no longer his. The impact of those two lives on multiple generations in multiple familes could have been fascinating. Unfortunately, the author, who happened to be the soldier's nephew, couldn't get out of its way long enough to really be told.

Does he really think we care that his first marriage failed and his second wife (and former student) does great research? Does it add ANYTHING to our understanding of the war, Canadian culture, or why things happen the way they do? No. It's just an annoying distraction from an otherwise compelling story.


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