No Man's Land

No Man's Land

A Novel

eBook - 2017
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"Inspired by the real-life experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I, Simon Tolkien delivers a perfectly rendered novel rife with class tension, period detail, and stirring action, ranging from the sharply divided society of northern England to the trenches of the Somme. Adam Raine is a boy cursed by misfortune. His impoverished childhood in turn-of-the-century London comes to a sudden and tragic end when his mother is killed in a workers' protest march. His father, Daniel, is barely able to cope with the loss. But a job offer in the coal mining town of Scarsdale presents one last chance, so father and son head north. The relocation is hard on Adam: the local boys prove difficult to befriend, and he never quite fits in. Meanwhile tensions between the miners and their employer, Sir John Scarsdale, escalate, and finally explode with terrible consequences. In the aftermath, Adam's fate shifts once again, and he finds himself drawn into the opulent Scarsdale family home where he makes an enemy of Sir John's son, Brice, who subjects Adam to a succession of petty cruelties for daring to step above his station. However, Adam finds consolation in the company of Miriam, the local parson's beautiful daughter with whom he falls in love. When they become engaged and Adam wins a scholarship to Oxford, he starts to feel that his life is finally coming together--until the outbreak of war threatens to tear everything apart. From the slums of London to the riches of an Edwardian country house; from the hot, dark seams of a Yorkshire coal mine to the exposed terrors of the trenches in France; Adam's journey from boy to man is set against the backdrop of a society violently entering the modern world"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Nan A. Talese/Doubleday,, 2017
Edition: First American edition
Copyright Date: u2016
ISBN: 9780385541985
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Alternative Title: Axis 360 eBooks


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Jul 22, 2017

The dead should be heard – or as Simon Tolkein puts it, the dead should not be buried in lies. “No Man’s Land” is a powerful evocation of Edwardian England largely from the ground level, almost an anti-“Downton Abbey.” His heroes are coal miners struggling to survive life in the Pit, socialist organizers fighting class warfare, unsung infantrymen in the trenches and fields of the Somme and a few tragically sympathetic officers, destitute mothers and widows, pastors driven mad by the overabundance of shallow graves to dig. This is an emotional read, an finely-wrought and epic tale of the attempt to remain human in the face of de-humanization on a massive and industrial scale.

Apr 09, 2017

Love these sagas and Simon Tolkien is a fine writer. It was very long thru the war battles, with extreme details of the awful trench warfare. This was an English story, but most appropriate as today is the 100th Anniversary of Vimy Ridge and Canadians experienced the exact same horrors.
Adam was an honourable, young, main character who experienced many changes in himself and saw it in friends and adversaries as well. They grew to heroes.


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