Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks is a moving, passionate, shocking, thought provoking and heartbreaking novel. A novel that manages to create a passionate and erotic love story combined with the horrors of war.
Set before and during the Great War, Birdsong tells the story of Stephen, starting in pre-war France and taking us right through the war and through a terrible period of history.
Faulks delivers a moving and shocking account of Stephen and his love affair and the trials and hardships of trench life and it seems as though at times you are seeing this all through the characters eyes.
This is a powerful novel, and certainly not for the faint hearted. I read this for my local book club and I can imagine when we meet in February this book is going to make for great discussion.
The battlefield scenes are so descriptive and cleverly written and at times make harrowing reading but the author makes sure you are in that trench and you are witnessing the vivid descriptions of carnage and brutalities of War.
I loved the characters and they are so well developed that I found they not only had faces but voices and I had such a connection with each and every one of them.
I learned so much from this book and I really enjoyed the story of the tunnellers, the descriptions of how both sides dug tunnels underground and lay mines under enemy lines was something that I had not been aware of and did some research on since.
This is a book that will stay with me for a long time as it has all the elements of a 5 star read for me. Its got the passion, the history and a great plot. It has the ability to make the reader exclaim out loud and to remember a time when precious lives were lost in the name of war.
I could go on and on but you just have to read it for yourself !