Now, this is definitely more acceptable. A trilogy that's completed instead of leaving readers hanging for a year or two. Pat Barker's 'Regeneration'. Eponymous Book 1 'Regeneration', Book 2 'The Eye In The Door' and Book 3 'The Ghost Road'. The man walked by, saw what I was reading and sneered at it. I narrowed my eyes at him. He assumed it's a fantasy series and he's no fantasy lover. He'll watch the tv shows I presume, but he's not in love with books talking about worlds balanced on the back of four elephants and a giant turtle, or the recovery of an Orb to save the world. I'm aware of the existence of the Regeneration trilogy. I was busy devouring other books and left this on the back burner. I forgot to get around to it till now. And this isn't fantasy.
The trilogy adheres to major historical events, and includes some historical figures. Certainly, it holds depressing background macro happenings of war, politics, social divides, suffering and pain. I like. Then, there're themes of masculinity, homosexuality, madness, parenthood and entrapment. Madness is prevalent throughout, the analysis of the nature of madness. Many things in war within the Book 1 is symbolic. Trenches, mutism, and war itself. Poets abound in the central hospital Craiglockhart, military camps and just about everywhere else.
I'm not that interested in the individual characters per se, even though the trilogy follows shifting protagonists, especially Siegfried Sassoon's movement through the frontline and his anti-war sentiments which contrast with army psychiatrist Dr William Rivers' opinions. Book 2 looks at the aftermath of the war through Billy Prior, as the soldiers return to deal with trauma and delves into Dr Rivers' treatment methods, which succinctly summarizes the psyche of British society. Book 2 is definitely wayyy heavier than Book 1.
Book 3 is set in 1918, featuring Billy Prior who's about to return to combat in France with poet Wilfred Owen.
Peace talk goes on whether orders forbidding it are promulgated or no. On the night we heard the Germans had agreed to peace talks there was a great impromptu party, officers and men together. Everybody sang. And then the next day in John Bull there's Bottomley saying, No, no, no and once again no. We must fight to the bitter end. (Whose end?) I don't want any more talk about not being out to destroy the German nation - that is just what I am out for ...
But it doesn't wash with the men. Not this time. In fact some of them have taken to going to latrines waving copies of John Bull.
Nobody here sess the point of going on now.
But others do. We leave here today, going back into the line.