Goodbye to All That

Goodbye to All That

Book - 2000
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An autobiographical work that describes firsthand the great tectonic shifts in English society following the First World War, Robert Graves's Goodbye to All That is a matchless evocation of the Great War's haunting legacy, published in Penguin Modern Classics.In 1929 Robert Graves went to live abroad permanently, vowing 'never to make England my home again'. This is his superb account of his life up until that 'bitter leave-taking'- from his childhood and desperately unhappy school days at Charterhouse, to his time serving as a young officer in the First World War that was to haunt him throughout his life. It also contains memorable encounters with fellow writers and poets, including Siegfried Sassoon and Thomas Hardy, and covers his increasingly unhappy marriage to Nancy Nicholson. Goodbye to All That , with its vivid, harrowing descriptions of the Western Front, is a classic war document, and also has immense value as one of the most candid self-portraits of an artist ever written.Robert Ranke Graves (1895-1985) was a British poet, novelist, and critic. He is best known for the historical novel I, Claudius and the critical study of myth and poetry The White Goddess . His autobiography, Goodbye to All That , was published in 1929, quickly establishing itself as a modern classic. Graves also translated Apuleius, Lucan and Suetonius for the Penguin Classics, and compiled the first modern dictionary of Greek Mythology, The Greek Myths . His translation of The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam (with Omar Ali-Shah) is also published in Penguin Classics.If you enjoyed Goodbye to All That , you might like Ford Madox Ford's Parade's End , also available in Penguin Modern Classics.'His wonderful autobiography'Jeremy Paxman, Daily Mail
Publisher: London : Penguin, 2000.
ISBN: 9780141184593
Characteristics: 281 p, [8] p of plates :,ill ;,20 cm.


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Aw_19 Aug 18, 2017

Honestly, this book was something of a hit-and-miss for me. Parts were enjoyable and funny, but other parts just dragged on and I wasn't sure why he was telling me a particularly story or anecdote. At times it felt that he had just written down whatever he remembered. There's obvious historical value in recording memories, but it doesn't necessarily make for enjoyable reading.

To be even more honest, I gave reading this book about 2/3 of the way through.

P.S. I may give this another shot at a later date.

bibliotechnocrat Jun 12, 2016

In this terrific book, World War I poet and fiction writer (I, Claudius), Robert Graves, writes about his experiences as a young officer. Though the tone seems light, even amusing, it becomes apparent that this is a defense mechanism against the insanity, incompetence, and horrific waste of the First World War. Graves's involvement in rescuing Siegfried Sassoon from his ill-advised diatribe against the war is covered here as well. As an officer and a "gentleman" himself, Graves is well placed to observe the stupidity of relying on a class system for effective leadership. An anti-war book from an extraordinary writer.

May 20, 2015

An autobiographical look at the English class system and WWI by one of England's renowned poets of the time. Well written, interesting and detailed. Well worth reading if you are interested.

Jun 30, 2014

English poet, translator, novelist ("I, Claudius"), and man of letters Robert Graves's celebrated autobiography dwells largely on his service in World War I, but also discusses his upbringing, his unhappy school days, and his post-war years. Wry, observant, and understated, this is a textbook example of how to write a good memoir and his unsentimental views of war, heroism, and British values, which caused some controversy, is refreshing. Graves's literary career brought him into contact with many luminaries, including T.E. Lawrence, Thomas Hardy, George "Everest" Mallory, H.G. Wells, and fellow poet and veteran Siegfried Sassoon. You might also like Pat Barker's novel "Regeneration."


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Jun 17, 2015

An "eyes wide open" view of life in the trenches during World War I. Graves, the author of "I, Claudius", gives a graphic, tragic view of life on the front lines. It's dirty, bloody, frightening, and matter-of-fact. We get a view of "shell-shock" before it was PTSD and received the recognition and treatment it deserves.
History becomes real to me through accounts like this. I highly recommend it for history and WWI buffs, and anyone who appreciates a good memoir.

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