Enemies by Richard Whitten Barnes
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Absentmindedly, Brian MacLennan left a bundle of sketches, that he drew during the Great War, in a hotel lobby. Jürgen Stern, in Canada on business, discovers those sketches and get quite a shock. Fifty years earlier he had taken one of them from the body of a Canadian soldier who he had killed in France. Apparently their lives had crossed paths more than once. The memories return of the mud, the vermin, the mindless killing, the deprivation and the mangled bodies, but the drawing he holds in hands makes him determined to meet his former enemy.
Richard Barnes has written more than a war story. Enemies is a story of redemption. It vividly recounts the horrors and futility of the First World War from the viewpoints of a young Canadian and German soldier. Then it takes an anecdote that the reader may think is merely filler, and turns it into a remarkable turn of events that restores honor to man wronged after fifty years.
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