In The Proud Canaries David Johnson created an unforgettable portrait of fighting soldiers. Now again, he has brought to life the soldiers of the Anchevin Regiment of Infantry, concentrating his story on the weeks in the Spring of 1917, when General Nivelle launched the disastrous offensive above the River Aisne. The record is there- in the decimation of the ranks, the incredible heroism-today it would be called foolhardiness- of the officers. David Johnson has clothed the record in human forms, made men and officers live again, recaptured the spirit that animated them, and evoked too vivid memories of what war was like in those days. It all seems like senseless waste -- and yet he makes the reader understand, through pages in which even the intensity of the training makes its own reasonableness when the men are faced with the challenges of combat. The story is told in the words of one of the few officers who came through. One gets not only the preparation, the background, the combat itself, but the emotional reactions, the links with the women they loved, the touches of humor, along with the tragedy, that makes this read like an authentic record.