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Thunder in the Skies: A Canadian Gunner in the Great War by Derek Grout


An extraordinary, newly discovered account from an ordinary Canadian on the ground in the crucial battles of the First World War.

What was it like to be a field gunner in the Great War?

Drawing on the unpublished letters and diary of field gunner Lt. Bert Sargent and his fellow soldiers, Thunder in the Skies takes the reader from enlistment in late 1914, through training camp, to the Somme, Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele, the Hundred Days Offensive, and home again with peace.

Posted just behind the front lines, Sargent and field gunners like him spent gruelling months supporting the infantry in the trenches. Theirs was a very different war, as dangerous or more at times as the one on the front lines. As an ordinary Canadian writing letters home to ordinary people, Sargent gives a wrenching, insightful account of a tight-knit band of soldiers swept up in some of the most important battles of the war that shaped the twentieth century.

Thunder in the Skies details the daily life of artillerymen fighting in the First World War in a way no other book has before.

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Canadian military history