After the Nivelle Offensive –   bookscover2cover

Another story of mine has been posted at bookscover2cover. This one is called After the Nivelle Offensive and can be read by clicking on the link.

The story was written last year, 100 years after the outbreak of World War 1, and the historical background, courtesy of Wikipedia, is as follows –

The Nivelle Offensive in April 1917 was a Franco-British offensive on the Western Front in the First World War. The French part of the offensive was intended to be strategically decisive, by breaking through the German defences on the Aisne within 48 hours, with casualties expected to be around 10,000 men.

The operation had been planned as a decisive blow to the Germans; by 20 April it was clear that the strategic intent of the offensive had not been achieved. By 25 April most of the fighting had ended. On 3 May the French 2nd Division refused to follow its orders to attack and this mutiny soon spread throughout the army.

In 1919 Pierrefeu gave French casualties from 16–25 April as 118,000 of whom 28,000 were killed, 5,000 died of wounds, 80,000 were wounded, 20,000 of whom were fit to return to their units by 30 April and 5,000 were taken prisoner. In 1920 Hayes wrote that British casualties were 160,000 and Russian casualties 5,183 men.

Nivelle was sacked as French Commander-in-Chief and moved to North Africa. He was replaced by the considerably more cautious Pétain with Foch as chief of the General Staff; the new commanders abandoned the strategy of decisive battle to one of recuperation and defence, to avoid high casualties and to restore morale. Pétain had 40–62 mutineers shot as examples.

Six Word Novel

At Six Word Memoirs they are currently running a competition to write a novel in six words. The competition is in honour of Ernest Hemingway’s birthday (July 21st) and the anniversary of his death (July 2nd), since literary legend has it that he was once challenged to write a novel in just six words. Hemingway’s response was a beaut, so it’s well worth following the link, settling down and investing the time to savour all six of the words he used.

Here’s my own, fairly flippant, contribution to the genre:

“Six words is too much” – Editor.