Author Topic: WAR!!! (or: What are some good depictions of it?)  (Read 478 times)

fardawg

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WAR!!! (or: What are some good depictions of it?)
« on: June 16, 2011, 12:58:34 AM »
For a long time I have had the idea for a fantasy series that takes place over several large wars in the history of the region (Revolutionary, Civil, and possibly World). The problem comes in how to narratively depict realistic warfare. I need help finding some inspiration for how to depict this.

So... What are some good novels (preferably modern and shorter ones - parts of a long series are fine, but I need to get through them quickly, so specific chapters for these would be nice) that depict large scale, mostly terrestrial, battle scenes (any period or genre is fine, but I prefer sci-fi or fantasy - steampunk would be good) and/or ones that take place during large wars but focus on characters that aren't necessarily participating in them directly, e.g. they are fleeing from them or making their way through battle zones?

Also, if you can recommend non-fiction books on strategy that are comprehensive yet easy to understand for the novice, that would be great. 

Thanks for any help
 
« Last Edit: June 16, 2011, 01:51:09 AM by fardawg »

fireflyz

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Re: WAR!!! (or: What are some good depictions of it?)
« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2011, 01:25:25 AM »
Reading works of fiction about war are only going to be as good as the author that wrote them.  In many cases those who've never experienced war/combat dont' write all that well about it in my opinion. The good news is that most readers don't know what's real and what isn't and so you can get away with a surprising amount of things.  I'd reccomend nonfiction first hand accounts.


Good Soldiers by David Finkell is a great one about the Iraq War and an infantry unit trying to win the hearts and minds while defeating the insurgency.  Crack and Thump! With a Combat Infantry Officer in WWII by Barry Basden is another good one.  Honestly, look for memoirs on amazon with good reviews and you can find just about any period from the Revolutionary War to the current day.  It all depends on how true you want to be to reality.  I like to believe that those that do know what they are talking about add a subtle, intangible layer of reality that elevates their work above others.  It could also just be that having experienced what they're talking about I can recognize the truth from the dross.

Just my two cents.
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fardawg

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Re: WAR!!! (or: What are some good depictions of it?)
« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2011, 01:49:11 AM »
Thanks, fireflyz

I guess I wasn't that clear since I used "realistic". My primary reason for looking at war in fiction is not for the realism of actual battle but more for how they plot battles narratively and how they use characterization within large scale battle scenes. And also for how they have characters who are not directly involved interact with them. For the actual strategy part I would look to non-fiction, which is why I asked that also.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2011, 02:30:25 AM by fardawg »

fireflyz

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Re: WAR!!! (or: What are some good depictions of it?)
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2011, 12:09:25 PM »
The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie, Killer Angels (can't remembe author name...trilogy following Civil War in the East.
Follow my journey from aspiring author to published phenom.  Along the way we'll discover the dos and don'ts of successful writing!

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