Sunday, 21 October 2012

The Trumpet Major

On Trafalgar Day, we like to remember the Thomas Hardy book, The Trumpet Major. Just a minor place in his canon - very little in the way of pitiless Providence, no grinning Fate playing with his pawns in the same kind of way that, for example, Hardy himself does.

Nope, instead tales of young and middle-aged love, press-gangs, the other Thomas Hardy (of "Kiss me" fame), Trafalgar and later Napoleonic campaigns. Where greater love has no man than that he gives us his girlfriend for his brother, and goes off to idea on the battlefield. I recommend it. A story that tells us, while romantic love is great, it's not the only virtue in this world.

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