The military cult classic with resonance to the wars in Iraq and Vietnam—now back in print When The Centurions was first published in. The military cult classic with resonance to the wars in Iraq and Vietnam – now back in print. When The Centurions was first published in , readers were. Jean Larteguy (the pen name of Jean Pierre Lucien Osty, ) spent time in prison in Spain in , the year I was born. He then joined.

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There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Perhaps this book suggests that they are.

I told Myke Cole he should read it, and he told me he was reading the Builders already, and I said this was better than the Builders, and he told me that was the sort of thing I shouldn’t write in public, and then I went ahead and ignored him.

How many times has the story recounted in this classic novel about war been writ in the history of mankind?


The book lartguy surely required reading for all who are puzzled by the failure of conventional militaries in the face of rebels. Many died on the mile death march into Camp One and many subsequently from starvation and illness. The Annual register of world events, Volume It has too its moments of perverted humor, of sensitivity, of poignancy. But he had to get accustomed to it, to harden himself and shed all those deeply ingrained, out-of-date notions which make for the greatness of Western man but at the same centutions prevent him from protecting himself.

This page was last edited on 19 Juneat One of those books was this one. To kill thousands of creatures in the name of a fashion! It has a vivid relevance and feel even now. And why are we drawing that line at all? In that work I believe the officers of this novel are brought back to France to be tried for crimes committed while combating the Algerian terrorist group. With more than 1, titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines.


It is a bitter indictment of a system.

Good dialogue seems to suffer the same fate. It has its moments of horror, depravity, cenfurions. The lands, languages, uniforms, and personalities were different—but the themes and emotions were constant. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

So I was shocked at how much I enjoyed this book.

The Centurions (Lartéguy novel) – Wikipedia

Although it did depress—Larteguy’s portrait of a society utterly consumed by hedonistic excess and bereft of a moral code; and of the men sworn to defend that society, who defend but are secretly loathed by it; both hit home in uncomfortable ways.

Recommended to David by: Looking for More Great Reads? One thing to take away – the Basques that provide the hero in this story represent the hill- and mountain-folk of every country. You can reach into history and come away with dou Even when the story itself was hard to follow I loved the ideas behind the narrative, the presentation of guerrilla and counter-guerrilla theory – really the clash of societies – found in the discussions between Vietnamese, French, and Algerians.

May 17, David rated it it was amazing. The men of The Centurions are as noble and isolated as their Roman precursors.

Here are resonant echoes of European literature going all the way back to The Song of Roland and the Crusades, if not to the Iliad — and little of the light mockery that appears as early as Orlando Furioso and Don Quixote a hundred years later or the black comedy of antiwar literature in the 20th century. But that success often comes from an amoral bloodthirstiness and willingness to do anything to win. And these particular soldiers, as the name of the book strongly implies and specific events in the book make explicit, are atavisms of a kind of man that emerged from the aristocracy from which the French aristocracy was born, the Roman aristocracy.


Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. But the whole is wholly worthwhile. I’ll limit my review to a few comments because I don’t want to spoil the story itself. We see them, warts and all, and we feel for them. The writing, its style, the content and psychological explanations of character are excellent. Additionally, the vast majority of the time, characters are referred to only by their last names Esclavier, Glatigny, etc.

The Centurions by Jean Larteguy

There’s not much place for women or love in The Centurionsalthough I count two true loves, one of a woman unreturned, and fatal for the soldier she is caring for, and another of a man surprised for a rich woman whose Algerian farm is burned down by rebels. LitFlash The eBooks you want at the lowest prices. It is easy to see why this book is the classic it has become.

All of this is very specifically twentieth century history. No, but there was ceturions well-written, unheroic, realistic-seeming action, as would be appropriate for a book of this sort.

While the book is a little disjointed in the telling, and the characters at times hard to sort out, it is worth read This is a book about soldiers, but not so much about war.

Each one emerges as sharply defined. You can reach into history and come away with double-handfuls of people – as individuals, mighty warriors, as groups, fearsome soldiers – that support an argument for the martial excellence of highlanders. Penguin Classics has just reissued this title with a Foreword by Robert D.

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