Non-Book Review: Pershing’s Crusaders

Pershing’s Crusaders:  The American Soldier In World War I, by Richard S. Faulkner

So this book is one of four books that I am reading and reviewing for an epic multi-book review on World War I history [1].  And speaking of epic, this book is an epic sort of work.  Admittedly, for personal reasons I have not tended to read a lot about World War I, but since the centennial of the end of WWI comes next year, this is a good opportunity to bring a largely forgotten conflict (at least in the United States) to light.  I’m not sure how many people the author is looking for as an audience for this book, but this volume is over 600 pages, and will take some time to read.  I’m not sure if it is a good book, as I have not read any sort of advanced press, but it looks like this book will give a great deal of context about the life of a soldier in World War I, and that alone should make it a worthwhile read.

In terms of its contents, this book contains chapters about the motivations of volunteers as well as conscription, life in training camps, what training was like in the United States, the food of the Doughboy, clothing and equipment, boarding ships for France, the relationship of the Doughboys with the French and English people.  After that there is a look at the weapons of the WWI soldier, the experiences of ethnic soldiers, the officers and NCOs of the AEF, the view of the soldiers of the Western allies as well as the Germans, training in trench warfare, life in logistical services, the temptation of sex for soldiers, religion, preparing for battle, the Doughboy in combat, the combat experience of artillerymen, tankers, combat engineers, and signalmen, morale and discipline, the sick the wounded, and the dead, and the armistice and occupation duty and returning home.  The contents of this book appear pretty appealing, both because the structure of the book is both chronological and topical and because a lot of attention is paid to the broader context of the American experience in World War I, something I consider worth learning, if only because the war was such a horror that it deserves to faced squarely and honestly.

[1] See, for example:

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/03/16/book-review-a-hobbit-a-wardrobe-and-a-great-war/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2016/11/17/book-review-a-short-time-to-stay-here/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2015/09/19/welcomed-home-again-the-sad-fate-of-svetozar-boroevic/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2015/01/15/non-book-review-a-handful-of-bullets/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2014/12/18/book-review-sketches-of-the-east-africa-campaign/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2014/06/28/today-in-history-on-june-28th-1914-the-world-went-mad/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2014/06/28/book-review-a-mad-catastrophe/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2014/02/09/book-review-wilson/

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About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in American History, Book Reviews, History, Military History and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Non-Book Review: Pershing’s Crusaders

  1. Pingback: Non-Book Review: Thunder And Flames | Edge Induced Cohesion

  2. Pingback: Non-Book Review: Forty-Seven Days | Edge Induced Cohesion

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