“All I needed to do was tick off the list of the old sins - lust, greed, anger, laziness, gluttony, and pride. At least three of those were going to cause trouble. And then, of course, there was the seventh, the most destructive of them all. Envy.
We’d come to that one before the end.”
It is 1916 and the war in France is hot and about to get hotter. Embedded undercover in a British infantry regiment on the Western Front, Anson Scott, an American newspaperman, watches, waits and writes his articles in secret, sending them out uncensored for his readers in the USA. But life in the trenches is far from what he had first expected. While the soldiers are raring to fight, the commanding officer is antiquated and the officers themselves are divided into factions. Only Scott’s friend, the elegant, dandified David Alexander is impervious to the murderous rages of the Company Captain Tollman, a monstrous man who victimises anyone who dares oppose him. And when the battalion is on leave away from the front, there is Beatrice Tempest – the most beautiful woman Scott has ever laid eyes on, but who is engaged to Alexander.
As the regiment readies itself for battle, Scott is in ever greater danger. If his real occupation is discovered, he will be shot as a spy. If he antagonises Tollman, he risks his own life. If he allows himself to become close to Beatrice, he will lose his one great friend. But then there is also David Alexander himself, who is pursuing his own highly dangerous obsession. Soon the opposing forces of love and hate are every bit as dangerous as the enemy gunfire, and the great battle on the Somme grows ever closer. Finally, the intensities of hope and fear cannot be evaded…
The Sins of Soldiers is a captivating tale of love, loss and the First World War. It will particularly appeal to those interested in the period and the human impact that occurred as a result of war.