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The Centurions

The Centurions

Lartéguy, Jean, 1920- author; Fielding, Xan, translator

WhenThe Centurionswas first published in 1960, readers were riveted by the thrilling account of soldiers fighting for survival in hostile environments. They were equally transfixed by the chilling moral question the novel posed: how to fight when the "age of heroics is over." As relevant today as it was half a century ago,The Centurionsis a gripping military adventure, an extended symposium on waging war in a new global order, and an essential investigation of the ethics of counterinsurgency. Featuring a foreword by renowned military expert Robert D. Kaplan, this important wartime novel will again spark debate about controversial tactics in hot spots around the world

Paperback, Book. English. War stories.
New edition.
Published New York: Penguin Books, 2015

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Statement of responsibility: Jean Larteguy ; translated by Xan Fielding ; foreword by Robert D. Kaplan
ISBN: 0143107445, 9780143107446
Note: Translated from the French.
Note: Previous edition of this translation: London: Hutchinson & Co., 1961.
Note: Formerly CIP.
Physical Description: xiv, 519 pages ; 20 cm
Subject: Prisoners of war France.; Prisoners of war Indochina.; Indochinese War, 1946-1954 Prisoners and prisons Fiction.; Algeria History Revolution, 1954-1962 Fiction.; Indochinese War, 1946-1954 Fiction.

Author note

JEAN LARTÉGUY (1920-2011) is the penname of Jean Pierre Lucien Osty, who served as a soldier in Korea and North Africa before becoming a distinguished journalist and novelist.

ALEXANDER (XAN) WALLACE FIELDING (1918-1991) served as a Special Operations Executive in the British Army in Crete, France, and the Far East. The author of several books, he also translated French works including Pierre Boulle'sThe Bridge over the River KwaiandPlanet of the Apes.

ROBERT D. KAPLAN is the author of many acclaimed books on the military, foreign affairs, and travel, includingBalkan Ghosts,The Revenge of Geography, andImperial Grunts.


It's impossible to fully comprehend the emotional impact of combat without having lived it. But reading The Centurions is a pretty good substitute