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Two essential first hand accounts and histories of the French Army in 1914 Experienced British correspondent George Herbert Perris accompanied French troops during the opening campaigns of the First World War, and the two books he wrote concerning his observations and experiences have provided us with an essential view and history of the conflict. Accounts of the period, by those who were there, are usually written from the perspective of the writer's own country and armed forces, so there are a number of books by British writers about the B. E. F and its activities on the far western flank, including the retreat from Mons and stand around Le Cateau. These books, written in English but concerning the French at war are therefore fundamentally different. The first of these two linked accounts deals with the outbreak of war and the invasion of German forces through Flanders and into France. Particular attention is given to the activities of the French Army on the eastern end of the front and Perris provides us with perspectives on French Army actions that are free of the usual biased interpretations given by observers with the British Army. Interesting observations on British actions are also included. Perris' second book concerns the great turnaround before the gates of Paris, which confounded the momentum of the German plan for a quick, incisive and conclusive victory. There can be little doubt that the Battle of the Marne, which resulted in a massive reversal for German forces, the retreat back to Ypres and the war of stalemate and attrition which ensued, was the first step on the bloody path to eventual victory. Although British forces took part in the battle, it is usually accepted that the Marne was a French battle and victory, so Perris's observations are invaluable. Leonaur editions are newly typeset and are not facsimiles; each title is available in softcover and hardback with dustjacket.
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