THE SECOND WORLD WAR THROUGH SOLDIERS’ EYES, by James Goulty. Published by Pen and Sword Books ( £19.99. Hardback.

HEXHAM author James Goulty is a military historian with a special interest in the training and combat experience of the British army during the 20th century. This book gives a soldier’s view – from recruitment and training to the brutal realities of combat – and reconstructs the experiences of the men and women involved.
The army which emerged victorious in 1945 was vastly different from the poorly funded force of 865,000 men which heard Neville Chamberlain declare war in 1939. With an influx of civilian volunteers and conscripts, the army became a ‘citizen’s force’ and its character and size were transformed. By D-Day Britain had a well-equipped, disciplined army of over three million men and women.