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Guzik 1“Book Review”Sarah GuzikHistory 1403E Dr. David J. NortonOctober 21, 2013
2Imagine a place where violence and fighting is a way of life. A place where the threat of death is real and the fear of death is nearly debilitating. It is war that has consumed this once peaceful dwelling and turned it into what most people would consider a dreadful nightmare. In 1917, Germany looked a lot like this place as the country was in the midst of a historical battle that is now known as World War I. That is the setting of Erich Remarque’s novel All Quiet on the Western Front. This novel follows the life of young Paul Bäumer who enlists in the German army with a few of his schoolmates in order to assist in fighting for his country.Bäumer and his comradesdevelop a very strong bond as they face the day-to-day uncertainties of war together. They are each other’s only support while positioned at the front line. As time goes on the soldiers face more struggles and losses. Bäumer must cope with losing his dearest friends to the war, and also learn to live with his personal injuries and sufferings.Through the character of Paul Bäumer, Remarque does an excellent job of portraying what the war is truly like mentally and physically for a soldier on the front lines. The author, Erich Remarque, was a soldier in battle during World War I. He experienced first hand the negative impact that war has on all the people involved. Remarque suffered five injuries while in battle, the last of which was very severe. After he returned home from the war, he began writing novels. These novels were meant to give the reader an idea of what war was really like. The civilians at home during war can only speculate about what the battlefield is truly like, so Remarque took it upon himself
Guzik 3to help those people understand. All Quiet on the Western Frontwas the first popular novel that he wrote depicting the “worst horrors of the age, war and inhumanity.”