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All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich…

All Quiet on the Western Front (original 1929; edition 1987)

by Erich Maria Remarque

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10,468220273 (4.08)1 / 712
Title:All Quiet on the Western Front
Authors:Erich Maria Remarque
Info:Ballantine Books (1987), Edition: 1, Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library, 1001 books to read before you die
Tags:WW1, antiwar, historical fiction, German Literature, classic

Work details

All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque (1929)

1001 (64) 1001 books (51) 20th century (170) anti-war (97) classic (336) classics (235) Europe (40) fiction (1,359) Folio Society (41) German (249) German fiction (41) German literature (267) Germany (323) historical (68) historical fiction (349) history (188) literature (282) military (86) novel (296) own (48) read (174) Roman (60) soldiers (53) to-read (148) translation (46) trench warfare (51) unread (61) war (678) WWI (1,284) WWII (54)
  1. 60
    The Road Back by Erich Maria Remarque (DeDeNoel)
    DeDeNoel: Also by Remarque, The Road Back is often considered a sequel to All Quiet. It has some of the same characters and alludes to others.
  2. 50
    Storm of Steel by Ernst Jünger (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Taken together, Jünger's memoir and Remarque's novel present a pair of radically different views of the German experience in World War I.
  3. 62
    Goodbye to All That by Robert Graves (Nickelini, chrisharpe)
  4. 41
    Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks (Simone2)
  5. 31
    Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo (usnmm2)
  6. 32
    The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien (chrisharpe)
  7. 00
    1948: A Soldier's Tale - The Bloody Road to Jerusalem by Uri Avnery (Polaris-)
  8. 11
    Fall of Giants by Ken Follett (mcenroeucsb)
  9. 00
    Beaufort by Ron Leshem (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books look at the personal toll of war.
  10. 11
    The Unknown Soldier by Väinö Linna (andejons)
  11. 01
    Border Crossings - An Aid Worker's Journey into Bosnia by Aubrey Verboven (Aubrey_Verboven)
  12. 01
    The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers (aliklein)
  13. 01
    Life in the tomb by Stratēs Myrivēlēs (ten_floors_up)
    ten_floors_up: A different perspective on trench warfare in the First World War. Fictional experiences of a Greek soldier on the Macedonian front, written in a less earthy, more florid style by a veteran of that campaign.
  14. 01
    Soldier from the Wars Returning by Charles Carrington (John_Vaughan)
    John_Vaughan: As a contrast and comparison All Quiet is written from the experiences of a soldier in the German trenches.
  15. 01
    Heeresbericht by Edlef Köppen (Dekki)
  16. 01
    Adjusting Sights by Haim Sabato (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books look at war without mentioning the politics that go along with it.
  17. 01
    Johnny the Partisan by Beppe Fenoglio (UrliMancati)
  18. 01
    Zero Hour by Georg Grabenhorst (lmichet)
  19. 01
    A Long, Long Way by Sebastian Barry (starfishian)
  20. 01
    Going After Cacciato by Tim O'Brien (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: Both books take a personal look at war.

(see all 21 recommendations)


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English (196)  French (5)  Dutch (3)  German (3)  Yiddish (3)  Finnish (2)  Spanish (2)  Swedish (2)  Portuguese (1)  Hebrew (1)  Czech (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (220)
Showing 1-5 of 196 (next | show all)
This book, by Erich Maria Remarque, is a classic book and a classic example of innocence lost in youth. This book follows the endeavors of Paul Baümer and his friends who join the German front lines in World War 1, he constantly faces danger and also returns but not without some sort of loss, faith, a friend, or a limb.
The book starts with Paul and his friends being urged to go help the war by his school teacher, and he is soon deployed with them, Tjaden, Albert, Müller and a few others. They meet a older veteran who becomes Paul's mentor and guidance through the war. Each battle they are sent into seem to have no significance and are either when and then lost the next day, and this only serves as a way to show what Paul is to the war, just a insignificant soul and no one would care if he died or not, everyday he sees new recruits that he says, "Haven't even learned what cover means" come in and be slaughtered, this isn't helped by the poor conditions that he is already lived in and he often remarks that hey are lucky to have died, and not have seen what it was really like. Not bravery or courage were shown in battles, but pure fight for survival.
Paul receives new that he will be given a couple weeks of leave, he isn't joyed by the fact of it, but saddened, as he would not know when he would ever see his friends again, and he wonders how he village is fairing opposed to the war. Upon arrival he finds that nothing has changed, and that he feels he doesn't belong here, it's a foreign world to the front lines, his father asks him questions of his experiences, and fights though he doesn't know that, as Paul says, " A man cannot talk of such things". The only person he still connects to is his dying mother who understands what he feels, and they share concern for each other while the others only talk of the physical part.
Upon return he is glad to return as most of his friends are alive par Müller, and they accept a patrol job, and Paul kills a man for the first time I hand to hand combat, this shakes Paul mentally and he stays in the trench for hours withy the body asking it for forgiveness, and when he tells Albert about it he just says it's for the good of the war. They then take a job on a very heavily bombed village, to evacuate villagers, they find a pig and multiple foods and cook and share. But the enemy see the smoke and start bombing, in their greed and lust for the succulent food they try and carry it out but Paul and Albert a injured. They are then taken to a church hospital where they're needs are attended to at a basic level and he finally sees the full extent if the misery that the war has done to everyone, when Albert's leg is amputated.
Paul is released from the Church and returns to his former station after his leg healed. He returns to find that from the 7 of his classmates who joined he is the last one left, or the last one he knows of as Albert most likely committed suicide, as he threatens it in the Church, Müller was shot, Kemmerich was killed in the beginning, and Tjaden is missing. Kat is the he only one left and he soon dies in Paul's arms as a piece of shrapnel pierced his head and killed him. Paul realizes that his death and his friends deaths mean nothing to war, as it is almost over and Germany has lost.
He kills himself and on that day , the war was pretty much over, and it was so quiet the headlines on that days paper was "All Quiet On The Western Front" symbolizing that even though he and his friends died no one really noticed or cared in the scheme of things.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book, Its beginning really pulls you in with the youth and optimism of the young soldiers and then while you read it, yourself seems to realize their horrors, and the harsh conditions they are facing. The book is paced fantastically and when the action is heating up you know its going to live up to your expectations, then even overcomes it at times. The overall theme was constantly there and you could feel it the whole way through, the constantly diminishing innocence and heart of the soldiers on the front lines, as they realize more and more of their part in the war. Eric Remarque does a wonderful job portraying something he himself was a part of, and it shows in the words and the actions of not just Paul, but everyone in the war. ( )
  br14alre | May 22, 2014 |
A highly evocative account of life as a soldier in WW1- fabulous and disturbing. ( )
  sianpr | May 5, 2014 |
Fantastic view of the war from the losing side. An image of what starving soldiers experienced as their country lost ground and started to collapse from within. ( )
  mccandlessn | Apr 24, 2014 |
All Quiet on the Western Front
(This translation by Brian Murdoch 1994)
All Quiet on the Western Front – is one of those modern classics that I have always been aware of but never actually thought about reading. However the Librarything Great War theme read is highlighting a lot of great books for me this year – which I may otherwise never have read.
"This book is intended neither as an accusation nor a confession, but simply as an attempt to give an account of a generation that was destroyed by the war – even those of it who survived the shelling”
There are so many great novels of World War 1 out there – the majority perhaps focusing on the British/American side. Depicting the horrors of warfare, life in the trenches and military field hospitals, and the effect of these realities on our young men who sacrificed their lives, it becomes easy to forget about the young men on the other side. What was it like on the other side of No man’s land? Were the trenches any the less uncomfortable? Were the horrors of death and destruction any less traumatising? was the sacrifice any the less terrible?
All Quiet on the Western Front, is a classic novel of German literature, first published as a newspaper serialisation in 1928 it was published as a novel a year later. Author Eric Maria Remarque – was himself a World War 1 veteran. This is not a story of heroic deeds undertaken in the name of war, but rather it is a story of comradeship, and the conditions in which soldiers find themselves: The struggle to find food, the monotony of camp life between military engagements and the widening distance between their old lives and their existence in the trenches.
The novel is narrated by nineteen year old Paul Bäumer who goaded by his school master to do so, joins the army soon after the outbreak of war, accompanying Paul to the trenches are several school friends. Paul and his friends, Tjaden, Müller and Kropp are joined in the trenches of the western front by soldier comrades from all walks of life; they form some unbreakable bonds with these men. The older Stanislaus Katczinsky – known to all as Kat – becomes a particular friend of Paul’s and something of a mentor to him. Together these young men experience all the horrors of trench warfare, the constant expectation of death, the terror of new recruits who are ill prepared for the realities of war. The constant shelling, hiding in mud filled holes, the disease, rats the size of cats and the loss of their friends. Ramarque’s war torn landscape is described with extraordinary vividness, we see it though, through the eyes of these heartbreakingly ordinary young men, forced to grow up during one of the most brutal conflicts in history.
“The evening benediction starts. Night falls, and mist rises out of the shell holes. It looks as if the craters are full of ghostly secrets. The white vapour creeps around fearfully before it dares to float up over the edge and away. Then long streaks drift from one shell hole to the next”

Alongside the slaughter and brutality, there are more mundane concerns, usually concerning food, finding it, cooking it, and sharing it out. Great excitement surrounds the capture of a goose and the making of potato pancakes, this new world, makes trading bread with Russian prisoners for boots seem matter of fact.
When Paul is given leave – he travels home to see his dying mother, father and sister. This short sojourn affects Paul psychologically – he feels closer to his friends back at the front, wanting only to get back to them, adrift now from the world he once knew. Paul seems to understand that things will never be the same again for him and his friends.
“I am young, I am twenty years of age; but I know nothing of life except despair, death, fear and the combination of completely mindless superficiality with an abyss of suffering. I see people being driven against one another, and silently, uncomprehendingly, foolishly, obediently and innocently killing one another.”
This novel is unsurprisingly deeply poignant – its power coming particularly from the relationships between these young men. There are moments when it is almost hard to read – Ramarque doesn’t pull any punches, the details of war never gratuitous, do feel terribly real. Finishing ‘All Quiet on the Western Front’ I felt haunted by the images of the western front, and the young men who fought and died there, it is a quietly devastating novel, beautifully written and unforgettable. ( )
  Heaven-Ali | Apr 22, 2014 |
Good story, but the translation leaves a little to be desired. One of the few examples where a motion picture adaptation (1979) actually improved on a book. Now I'm working my way through the original, in German. ( )
  christineplouvier | Apr 20, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (76 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Erich Maria Remarqueprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Murdoch, BrianTranslatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wheen, A.W.Translatormain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Groth, JohnIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hansen, HarryTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hämäläinen, ArmasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jacini, StefanoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Westphalen, TilmanAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This book is to be neither an accusation nor a confession, and least of all an adventure, for death is not an adventure to those who stand face to face with it. It will try simply to tell of a generation of men who, even though they may have escaped shells, were destroyed by the war.
First words
We are at rest five miles behind the front.
The war has ruined us for everything.
We were eighteen and had begun to love life and the world; and we had to shoot it to pieces. The first bomb, the first explosion, burst in our hearts. We are cut off from activity, from striving, from progress. We believe in such things no longer, we believe in the war.
But now, for the first time, I see you are a man like me. I thought of your hand-grenades, of your bayonet, of your rifle; now I see your wife and your face and our fellowship. Forgive me, comrade. We always see it too late. Why do they never tell us that you are poor devils like us, that your mothers are just as anxious as ours, and that we have the same fear of death, and the same dying and the same agony.
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Haiku summary
Men are committed,
Slouching toward Bethlehem.
Death is generous.

Boys go off to war;
Surprise! Germans have feelings.
Disregard all flags.


Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0449213943, Mass Market Paperback)

Paul Baumer enlisted with his classmates in the German army of World War I. Youthful, enthusiastic, they become soldiers. But despite what they have learned, they break into pieces under the first bombardment in the trenches. And as horrible war plods on year after year, Paul holds fast to a single vow: to fight against the principles of hate that meaninglessly pits young men of the same generation but different uniforms against each other--if only he can come out of the war alive.
"The world has a great writer in Erich Maria Remarque. He is a craftsman of unquestionably first trank, a man who can bend language to his will. Whether he writes of men or of inanimate nature, his touch is sensitive, firm, and sure."

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:27:39 -0400)

(see all 11 descriptions)

The testament of Paul Baumer, who enlists with his classmates in the German army of World War I, illuminates the savagery and futility of war.

(summary from another edition)

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