From here to eternity

Front Cover
Delta, Oct 13, 1998 - Fiction - 864 pages
35 Reviews
Diamond Head, Hawaii, 1941.  Pvt. Robert E. Lee Prewitt is a champion welterweight and a fine bugler.  But when he refuses to join the company's boxing team, he gets "the treatment" that may break him or kill him.  First Sgt. Milton Anthony Warden knows how to soldier better than almost anyone, yet he's risking his career to have an affair with the commanding officer's wife.  Both Warden and Prewitt are bound by a common bond:  the Army is their heart and blood . . .and, possibly, their death.

In this magnificent but brutal classic of a soldier's life, James Jones portrays the courage, violence and passions of men and women who live by unspoken codes and with unutterable despair. . .in the most important American novel to come out of World War II, a masterpiece that captures as no ther the honor and savagery of men.


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Review: From Here to Eternity

User Review  - John Alt - Goodreads

When James Jones died the Army lost one of its own. Here was a soldier, a man with an abiding regard for things military. Many novelists treat war and the Army but only with a passing interest. They ... Read full review

Review: From Here to Eternity

User Review  - Geoffrey Benn - Goodreads

“From Here to Eternity,” by James Jones, is an unusual novel in that its subject is life in the military, not during war, but in peacetime. Specifically, the novel follows the lives of two enlisted ... Read full review

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About the author (1998)

Born in Illinois, Jones was unable to afford college, so he enlisted in the Army in 1939. With the publication of Whistle (1978), it became apparent that Jones's main achievement was a trilogy of novels about U.S. Army life during World War II that may well stand among the best war fiction of all time. Jeffrey Helterman (Dictionary of Literary Biography) has said that Jones may well have "produced an immense, vital trilogy on men at war which should earn him the place he had always wanted---to be the Thomas Wolfe of his generation." The same main characters appear in From Here to Eternity (1951), The Thin Red Line (1962), and Whistle, though their names are changed. The first novel of the trilogy, From Here to Eternity, which won the National Book Award, was a controversial bestseller that was made into one of the best movies of 1953. Jones's novel is a brutal, almost ugly, picture of the peacetime army in Hawaii until the attack on Pearl Harbor. The Thin Red Line describes the Guadalcanal campaign, while Whistle, which was edited by Willie Morris from a nearly completed manuscript, shows Mort Winch ("Milt Warden" of From Here to Eternity) returning wounded to the United States with three of his men only to discover that neither the army nor their country has any significant place for them. Jones's other fiction is considered less successful. Some Came Running (1957) is an autobiographical novel about a veteran who returns to Illinois to write a war novel; it was condemned for its undisciplined length, verbal excesses, and naive philosophizing. The deliberately short and much tighter The Pistol (1959) proved to be the first of several works in which an almost obsessive concern with heavy symbolism suggested to some readers that Jones had veered too far away from the raw naturalism of his first novel. Go to the Widow-Maker (1967), about a civilian's effort to prove his masculinity and courage in skin diving and shark shooting, was likewise poorly received. Nevertheless, Jones's achievements in his trilogy continue to be admired by critics and eagerly read by new generations of readers.

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