|About the Book|
With lofty dreams of becoming a great success in the financial world, twenty-year-old Dai Bowen leaves his small Welsh village to seek a career with Lloyds Bank in London. When World War I breaks out and the banks are forced to close, Dai enlists inMoreWith lofty dreams of becoming a great success in the financial world, twenty-year-old Dai Bowen leaves his small Welsh village to seek a career with Lloyds Bank in London. When World War I breaks out and the banks are forced to close, Dai enlists in the army, hopeful that the war will be over before he is called on to fight. However, The Great War will not end for another four years and Dai finds himself marching to the front lines and fighting the Germans in trench warfare.While Dai is in the army, his teenage love, Gwyneth Hughes, waits for him, although her parents are pressuring her to marry Rhys Davis, a successful young doctor. After a devastating incident, Gwyneth is forced to conceal a shameful secret from Dai and her family. Although Gwyneth is never far from his thoughts, Dai reconnects with Kathleen Coleman, a clerk from Lloyd’s Bank, who is now serving as a Red Cross nurse. After a particularly gruesome tour in the trenches, Dai shares with Kathleen his fear of dying, and, in a moment of weakness, becomes intimate with her. During the Christmas Truce, the British and Germans lay down their guns and venture into no-man’s land to gather their dead. Once the battlefield is clear, the two sides celebrate the holiday. Through their interactions, Dai discovers that those he has been taught to hate are truly no different from him and his comrades, with hopes, dreams and loved ones back home. However, when the fighting resumes, the British break through German lines and Dai is forced to kill those with whom he has just celebrated Christmas. It is during this bloody exchange that he comes face-to-face with Adolf Hitler, and makes a decision that could change the course of history.What Passing Bells by Julian Moss is not just a compelling and dramatic story of a restless young man with the Great War as a backdrop, but also a balanced and relatable view of a war that transcends generations. When readers first meet Dai Bowen, he is an innocent young man, unaffected by the outside world, but when peer pressure and economics drive him to join the army he soon discovers from the horrors of war just how brutal the world can be. Moss also draws on the newly discovered research on Adolf Hitler in Thomas Weber’s book Hitler’s First War to piece together a fictionalized but realistic view of the future dictator. What Passing Bells skillfully weaves in the young Hitler’s perspective of the conflict and the world at large, providing readers insight into his uneasy relationship with his fellow soldiers in the List Regiment.The ideal read for lovers of historical fiction, history buffs and war-story aficionados, What Passing Bells is an unforgettable novel that brings the reader directly into the trenches.