In 1936 Eric Blair, a novelist, critic and political satirist known by the pseudonym George Orwell, went to Spain to write about the Spanish Civil War. This book is his eyewitness account of that conflict. Nothing written since is as moving and alive with the terrors and triumphs of that time past. Orwell battled totalitarianism through his novels ANIMAL FARM and 1984, but for immediacy and passion nothing surpasses this chronicle.
"I wonder what is the appropriate first action when you come from a country at war and set foot on peaceful soil. Mine was to rush to the tobacco-kiosk and buy as many cigars and cigarettes as I could stuff into my pockets." Most war correspondents observe wars and then tell stories about the battles, the soldiers and the civilians. George Orwell--novelist, journalist, sometime socialist--actually traded his press pass for a uniform and fought against Franco's Fascists in the Spanish Civil War during 1936 and 1937. He put his politics and his formidable conscience to the toughest tests during those days in the trenches in the Catalan section of Spain. Then, after nearly getting killed, he went back to England and wrote a gripping account of his experiences, as well as a complex analysis of the political machinations that led to the defeat of the socialist Republicans and the victory of the Fascists.