All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque

87%

19 Critic Reviews

...it just goes to show how classics never fail to surprise me. Yes, it definitely falls under the ‘DEPRESSING WAR BOOK’ category, but it’s also funny, poignant, and so unbelievably BEAUTIFUL at the same time.
-Your Move, Dickens

Synopsis

Considered by many the greatest war novel of all time, All Quiet on the Western Front is Erich Maria Remarque’s masterpiece of the German experience during World War I.

I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. . . .

This is the testament of Paul Bäumer, who enlists with his classmates in the German army during World War I. They become soldiers with youthful enthusiasm. But the world of duty, culture, and progress they had been taught breaks in pieces under the first bombardment in the trenches.

Through years of vivid horror, Paul holds fast to a single vow: to fight against the principle of hate that meaninglessly pits young men of the same generation but different uniforms against one another . . .  if only he can come out of the war alive.

Look for special features inside. Join the Random House Reader’s Circle for author chats and more.

“The world has a great writer in Erich Maria Remarque. He is a craftsman of unquestionably first rank, a man who can bend language to his will. Whether he writes of men or of inanimate nature, his touch is sensitive, firm, and sure.”—The New York Times Book Review


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Erich Maria Remarque

See more books from this Author
In 1947, after eight successful years in the United States, Remarque became a U.S. citizen. During World War I he was drafted into the German army at the age of 18. After the war he tried various occupations and in his spare time wrote the antimilitaristic All Quiet on the Western Front (1929) that became a classic of modern warfare but was condemned as "defeatist" by the Nazis.The Road Back (1931) is the sequel. His later novels deal with World War II; they have had greater popularity than critical success.
 
Published September 3, 2013 by Random House. 307 pages
Genres: History, War, Literature & Fiction, Education & Reference, Travel, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Action & Adventure, Political & Social Sciences, Self Help, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science & Math, Children's Books. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for All Quiet on the Western Front
All: 19 | Positive: 19 | Negative: 0

The Independent

Good
Reviewed by Geoff Dyer on Aug 27 1994

Its power has not diminished over time. Reading A W Wheen's 1929 translation today one is stunned by the book's modernity. Widely praised for telling the truth about the war, its vivid battle scenes are imaginatively rather than literally accurate...

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Open Letters Monthly

Above average
Reviewed by Rohan Maitzen on Sep 02 2012

All Quiet on the Western Front is as bleak and compelling a version of the “lost generation” narrative of World War I as I’ve read so far.

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Open Letters Monthly

Good
Reviewed by Rohan Maitzen on Sep 02 2012

Battle is terrible, but it allows no time for reflection; Paul (and the reader) hurtles along, transformed from a thinking being to a “wild beast”...

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ABC Perth

Good
on May 30 2014

But what follows is an extraordinarily detailed evocation of life and death in the trenches of the Western Front.

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Teen Ink

Good
Reviewed by Ian T. on Jan 28 2014

The start and end of the novel are calm enough, but I will always remember the tragedies in between. Remarque has created a uniquely beautiful novel of incessant contrast from warfare and memoir stereotypes.

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http://www.bookdrum.com

Good
on Feb 21 2015

From beginning to end, All Quiet On the Western Front will captivate you and make you care for the fate of Paul and his friends.

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Fyrefly's Book Blog

Good
on Mar 06 2008

Not particularly enjoyable, but not a particularly hard read, either, and definitely an important one. Worth picking up if you didn’t get it in high school.

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Things Mean a Lot

Excellent
Reviewed by Ana S on Nov 16 2012

...for all its bleakness, this is an easy novel to fall in love with, particularly because of Paul Bäumer’s narrative voice. He’s thoughtful, deeply humane, warm in his telling despite all his disillusionment, and capable of highlighting both the little moments of connection the war brought about and all the darkness that underpinned them.

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Jules' Book Reviews

Good
Reviewed by Jules on Apr 09 2009

A fantastic story of the harsh realities of war, it’s a book that lingers with you, even after your finished.

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Vulpus Libris

Good
on Feb 21 2015

This is not an easy read – there are scenes that will make you put it down to gather yourself, some images that are too strong to truly contemplate for long. But if it is worth remembering those that were lost, it is worth reading this book to have some idea, however vague, of what they suffered...

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Impressions In Ink

Good
Reviewed by Annette on May 26 2010

This book is considered by the writer to be a tribute to all of those who did fight in this war. He has written a more than adequate portrayal, he has written an account that leaves the reader breathless and taut with anguish.

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Reading World

Good
Reviewed by Susan on Mar 14 2011

This is a truly powerful book. The writing is so descriptive, so beautiful, you are right inside Paul’s head as he experiences the war. His thoughts run the gamut from simple and animalistic to profound. I’m hardly qualified to judge "the greatest war novel of all time" but I can recommend this classic highly.

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Reading Matters

Excellent
Reviewed by kimbofo on Jan 29 2006

I found this book to be an incredibly sad, lump-in-the-throat read but one that is powerful and life-changing. If you haven't read it, then you must.

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Your Move, Dickens

Excellent
Reviewed by Darlyn on Aug 19 2011

...it just goes to show how classics never fail to surprise me. Yes, it definitely falls under the ‘DEPRESSING WAR BOOK’ category, but it’s also funny, poignant, and so unbelievably BEAUTIFUL at the same time.

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http://www.aartichapati.com

Good
on May 04 2010

More than any other book I've ever read, Remarque's novel showed me just how depressingly pointless war is, and how wasteful. For that reason, I will always recommend a person to read All Quiet on the Western Front because it is a great war novel. It does not glorify war, it reviles it.

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His Futile Preoccupations

Good
on Aug 24 2007

All Quiet on the Western Front is an amazing, unforgettable book–it’s just as relevant today as the day it was published.

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Just William's Luck

Good
Reviewed by William Rycroft on Jan 10 2012

...this great war novel is of course a great anti-war novel. One that retains a devastating impact and fully deserves its classic status.

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Rooftop Reviews

Good
Reviewed by Robert on Jul 24 2010

"All Quiet On the Western Front" has stood the test of time as a novel. It's characters are brilliantly painted, the story finely developed.

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The Nerd Reports

Excellent
on Jun 19 2012

All Quiet on the Western Front is one of those rare novels that hypnotically pulls you into the scenes and then forces you to face and to question what you have just seen.

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Reader Rating for All Quiet on the Western Front
89%

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