Friday, November 16, 2018

Fact Friday: Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood by Nathan Hale

Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood: a World War I tale by Nathan Hale. Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales series #4. 126 p. Amulet Books/ Abrams, May, 2014. 9781419708084. (Own)

Fact Friday concludes our week devoted to books about World War I with Treaties, Trenches, Mud and Blood: a World War I tale by Nathan Hale. This is book number four in the Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales series. Though technically this book is historical fiction because it is narrated by the (dead) historical figure, Nathan Hale, all the history in these books is factually correct and often includes direct quotations. In case you are unfamiliar with the series, in One Dead Spy, the first book, Nathan Hale is heading to the gallows but since he was a historical figure, he's in future history books and has absorbed all the American history that happened (happens?) after his demise (in the future?) Yeah, it's mind-bendy, but go with it. This is sort an Americanized 1001 Arabian Nights with Hale delaying his execution with one more story.

The causes of World War I are complex but Hale does a good job of distilling them. The war was also notable for the advancements of military technology, such as poison gas and tanks. The horrors of this war were gruesome and the loss of life on both sides was extremely high. Hale manages to convey that without bludgeoning the reader. The palette is mostly earth tones, the art is crowded and filled with detail. The representation of the countries is signified by animal heads, Bulldog = England and Rooster = France. 

The entire series is quite well done and highly recommended. 

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