The Virgin Soldiers

The Virgin Soldiers

3.69 (258 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback

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During the years 1948-1952 the Communist guerilla war in Malaya kept a whole British army occupied. Some of this army were good soldiers, others were not. This is a funny and erotic account of modern army life. The author also wrote "The Love Beach", "This Time Next Week" and "Orange Wednesday".show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 108 x 176 x 18mm | 140.61g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • 0140144269
  • 9780140144260

Review Text

The author wrote the well-received This Time Next Week (1964) in which he revealed a comic flair that underlined an unsentimental approach to the pathetic. The same blend is evident here in a book that seems familiar. It hasn't been done before quite this way in just this setting, but it's a form that's been around since Cain killed Abel. This is the misfit soldier novel and the scene is Malaya during the 1948-52 action fought by the British Army, but not this particular company. These are the clerks, close enough to hear but seldom see the actual fighting. The nearest thing to a central character in these barracks is Brigg, just nineteen, not really sure what he's in Malaya for, and writing letters home to his girl Joan and dying to lose his virginity in an area where native women for sale are cheap and girls of his background are rare. Brigg's frustration and confusions lead to moments of high comedy shafted by the horrific accidents of war in an entertainment that has proven appeal for men. (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

258 ratings
3.69 out of 5 stars
5 22% (58)
4 38% (99)
3 28% (73)
2 8% (21)
1 3% (7)
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