Great Writers on the Great War: Buchan’s War
By (author) John Buchan
John Buchan, author of The Thirty-Nine Steps, spent the First World War serving in a variety of official positions, but he also helped to produce a monthly magazine chronicling the history of the war, which was later published in twenty-four volumes as Nelson’s History of the War. With his access to secret information about the course of the war, Buchan had a clear grasp of the situation and in this book he puts it across to the reader with all the narrative skill of a novelist. Buchan’s War takes us through some of the key campaigns and battles of the war, from the opening of the fighting and the Battle of the Marne via Verdun, Jutland and the Somme to the last German offensives in 1918 and the Armistice, in the words of one of Britain’s greatest thriller writers.
Born in Perth in 1875, John Buchan served in government in what is now South Africa before returning to London and working as editor of The Spectator. His first novel, Prester John, was published in 1910 and his most famous work, The Thirty-Nine Steps, came out in 1915. In 1935 he was elevated to the peerage as Baron Tweedsmuir and appointed Governor General of Canada by King George V. He died in 1940.