The Ghost Road Chapter Summary

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Sander van Opheusden Title: The Ghost Road by Pat Barker. Published in London, England by publisher Penguin Books in 2008. Number of pages: 278 The finale of war and Regeneration In this third war novel in Pat Barker’s Regeneration trilogy, The Ghost Road tells a story about a group of shell shocked soldiers in World War I who are being treated by Dr. William Rivers at Craiglockhart War Hospital. The book features historical protagonists Dr. Rivers (1864 – 1922), psychiatrist and anthropologist, and poets Siegfried Sassoon (1886 – 1967) and Wilfred Owen (1893 – 1918). The book also features fictional characters, such as Lieutenant Billy Prior. Billy is a working class man who is elevated to the position of British officer. The story is told…show more content…
“The Ghost Road” talks about the internal struggles of two protagonists, Billy Prior and William Rivers. The story starts in 1918, during World War I, where Billy is participating in outpatient care, and through this kind of treatment, he is learning how to confront his emotional wounds. Dr. Rivers is confronting his own ghosts and demons, which includes a process of confronting flashbacks of his life spent on mission trips. The book’s thesis is about “Shell Shock” and the dawning, growing protest of the war’s insanity. Although the book has a clear storyline, it doesn’t feel complete without reading the first two books as well. It feels like there are a lot of blanks that you can only fill in when you have read the entire trilogy. But as a single entry, the book has almost everything in it. A lot of poetic intensity with the unpleasant reality of war, some humour, tragic drama. The Ghost Road both covers history and surpasses it. It is appealing to all audiences and all ages, although it is recommended to read the other two parts “Regeneration” and “The eye in the door” first. This will put all the pieces together when reading this final

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