Week 1:”The Return of Captain Emmett”

You might wonder how a blog that was launched on Feb. 1 has two posts dated January. It’s because I’m participating in the War Through the Generations Reading Challenge.


I have pledged to read more than 11 books — but I intend to read a book a week. I didn’t want to lose track of the titles I’ve read so far.

So, “The Return of Captain Emmett,” by Elizabeth Speller, made for a pleasant afternoon read. The hero, Laurence Bartram, is asked by an a family friend to find out why her shell-shocked brother, John Emmett, shot himself. He seemed to be recovering — why did he die? Bartram is terrible depressed (so much so that the book starts to become depressing), but what else has he got to do? His first clue is the list of Emmett’s bequests. Who are these people, and what on earth do they have in common?

There’s a great deal more telling than showing in this novel — I nearly set it aside. But it hangs on an interesting story, an especially tragic facet of life at the front, and I certainly can recommend it for that.

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