The Caught in Conflict Collection is an imprint of fast-paced, historically accurate, morally-complex quick reads for Adults and Teens. They can be read in any order.
Jim Hay, thinks war is a glorious adventure, and cannot wait for his turn to fight. But as his father marches off to battle in August 1914, Jim must be content to record his thoughts and dreams in his journal.
All too quickly, however, Jim's simple life begins to unravel. His father is killed in action, his mother suffers a breakdown, and when he does at last join up, it is as much to find a refuge as it is to seek glory.
What Jim discovers in the trenches of France is enough to dispel any romantic view of the war. Soon his longing for adventure is replaced by a basic need to survive, and the final tragic outcome is one he never could have imagined.
"Wilson brilliantly captures the thoughts, feelings, and naivete‚ of a young man caught up in a conflict he does not fully understand and is ill prepared to face. The format effectively draws readers into the narrative, and characterization is solid throughout. Historical anecdotes lend even more somber realism to the story. Jim's growth as a human being, his increasing self-awareness, and, especially, his shocking fate are not soon forgotten. A compelling, fascinating, and ultimately disturbing book that is not to be missed."
Robert Gray, East Central Regional Library, Cambridge, MN
"Although this novel focuses on World War I, it's a timely reflection on the realities of war that presents a powerful, timeless anti-war argument…the diary form lends immediacy and intimacy to the gripping story, which Wilson has based on actual diaries kept by members of the Highland Light Infantry. A terrific addition to a social studies or history curriculum." Connie Fletcher