PRE-ORDER The Unknown Warrior by John Nichol (Signed)
City Books

PRE-ORDER The Unknown Warrior by John Nichol (Signed)

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This title is due to be published 26th September. 

***Pre-ordered titles will be shipped in the week of publication. If you place a pre-order alongside a title we have in stock, they will be shipped separately and you will be charged accordingly at checkout***

Over one million British Empire soldiers were killed during the First World War. More than a century later, more than half a million still have no known grave.

The scale of the fighting, the destructive power of high explosive, and the combination of relentless military engagement and glutinous mud meant that many of the dead were never recovered or identified. Names were left without bodies, and bodies, or fragments of bodies, without names. In an emotional personal journey, Sunday Times bestselling author John Nichol uncovers the dramatic story of the Unknown Warrior who lies in Westminster Abbey, and our nation’s deep-seated need to honour and mourn the fallen.

‘A Soldier of the Great War Known Unto God.’ Rudyard Kipling In the aftermath of the First World War, an idea was born for a single ‘Unknown Warrior’ to commemorate every one of the missing, and help staunch the tidal flow of national grief. Echoed most recently by the funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, each phase of his burial ceremony was choreographed with military precision, love, and respect. Former RAF Tornado Navigator and Gulf War prisoner-of-war John Nichol, retraces the Warrior’s journey home from the battlefields of Northern France to Westminster Abbey, talking to relatives of those involved and researching long-forgotten archives.

How did the plan take shape? Who was this ‘unknown’ man? How was he chosen, and from where? What were the logistical challenges of repatriating a single body, whilst retaining its total anonymity? To help shine light on the 100-year-old story, John seeks out modern experts in battlefield trauma, the recovery of the slain, and the complexities of ceremonial interment on a grand scale. And speaking to those who have lost loved ones in more recent conflicts, he meditates upon our continuing need of a tangible resting place at which to truly grieve the fallen. Drawing on his own experience of military service and combat, Nichol explores the way individuals and nations have marked the sacrifice of their dead across the ages.

Above all, The Unknown Warrior is a search for the true meaning of camaraderie, service and remembrance.