"The Boys' Crusade is the great historian Paul Fussell's
unflinching and unforgettable account of the American infantryman's
experiences in Europe during World War II. Based in part on the
author's own experiences, it provides a stirring narrative of what
the war was actually like, from the point of view of the
children--for children they were--who fought it. While dealing
definitively with issues of strategy, leadership, context, and
tactics, Fussell has an additional purpose: to tear away the veil
of feel-good mythology that so often obscures and sanitizes war's
"A chronicle should deal with nothing but the truth," Fussell
writes in his Preface. Accord-ingly, he eschews every kind of
sentimentalism, focusing instead on the raw action and human
emotion triggered by the intimacy, horror, and intense sorrows of
war, and honestly addressing the errors, waste, fear, misery, and
resentments that plagued both sides. In the vast literature on
World War II, "The Boys' Crusade stands wholly apart. Fussell's
profoundly honest portrayal of these boy soldiers underscores their
bravery even as it deepens our awareness of their experiences. This
book is both a tribute to their noble service and a valuable lesson
for future generations.
"From the Hardcover edition.
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