The Grandfather I Never Met

By Janine Agzarian


This book is beautifully told and beautifully balanced.

It is a social history; a reflection on the multi-layered hurts of war; a revelation of the agony of family background. The author considers the difference between the dignity of death in war service and the struggle of society to recognise the needs of the ‘returned’.

The work began as the author’s need to walk the ‘walk’ of her grandfather war hero through the blighted battlefields of the Somme. It follows the trail as she revisits the French and English sites all extrapolated from a wonderful ‘war box’ that sat tantalisingly within her grasp when she was young.

The author’s ‘Nan’ was a story-teller who died aged 94, widowed for 59 years, still lucid, and still at the heart of her family.

The story is no fairy tale, yet is is a never-ending story. It is simply and directly written, lyrical in places, humorous in others.

It will not fail you.

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