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Private Peaceful

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From the Children's Laureate of England, a stunning novel of the First World War, a boy who is on its front lines, and a childhood remembered. "They've gone now, and I'm alone at last. I have the whole night ahead of me, and I won't waste a single moment of it . . . I want tonight to be long, as long as my life . . ." For young Private Peaceful, looking back over his childh From the Children's Laureate of England, a stunning novel of the First World War, a boy who is on its front lines, and a childhood remembered. "They've gone now, and I'm alone at last. I have the whole night ahead of me, and I won't waste a single moment of it . . . I want tonight to be long, as long as my life . . ." For young Private Peaceful, looking back over his childhood while he is on night watch in the battlefields of the First World War, his memories are full of family life deep in the countryside: his mother, Charlie, Big Joe, and Molly, the love of his life. Too young to be enlisted, Thomas has followed his brother to war and now, every moment he spends thinking about his life, means another moment closer to danger.

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From the Children's Laureate of England, a stunning novel of the First World War, a boy who is on its front lines, and a childhood remembered. "They've gone now, and I'm alone at last. I have the whole night ahead of me, and I won't waste a single moment of it . . . I want tonight to be long, as long as my life . . ." For young Private Peaceful, looking back over his childh From the Children's Laureate of England, a stunning novel of the First World War, a boy who is on its front lines, and a childhood remembered. "They've gone now, and I'm alone at last. I have the whole night ahead of me, and I won't waste a single moment of it . . . I want tonight to be long, as long as my life . . ." For young Private Peaceful, looking back over his childhood while he is on night watch in the battlefields of the First World War, his memories are full of family life deep in the countryside: his mother, Charlie, Big Joe, and Molly, the love of his life. Too young to be enlisted, Thomas has followed his brother to war and now, every moment he spends thinking about his life, means another moment closer to danger.

30 review for Private Peaceful

  1. 4 out of 5

    Dem

    A bookclub read which I really enjoyed. Set against the backdrop of World War One, the story follows brothers Charlie and Tommo as they grow up and enlist in Britain's army to fight in the war. Each chapter begins sometime during a long night as Tommo recalls all the adventures and trials he and his family endured together. This book is aimed at 10-14 year olds however adults seem to really enjoy it and it is a great discussion book.

  2. 5 out of 5

    *Rayne - The HeartBreaker*

    The sadest book I have ever read. I would reccommend this to you all who like to cry over a book, but I warn you to have a tissue when your near the end, because you'll cry your heart out. This book is passionate and brings you deep, letting you know how the characthers feeling and wishing it could change to a happy ending, but it also tells you what war and true love and brotherly friendship is about. It tells you how Charlie and Tommo Peaceful come to at the end, and I wish I have never read this The sadest book I have ever read. I would reccommend this to you all who like to cry over a book, but I warn you to have a tissue when your near the end, because you'll cry your heart out. This book is passionate and brings you deep, letting you know how the characthers feeling and wishing it could change to a happy ending, but it also tells you what war and true love and brotherly friendship is about. It tells you how Charlie and Tommo Peaceful come to at the end, and I wish I have never read this book because my heart aches over it, but I am also glad.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    Words can't even describe how much this book means to me. I would recommend it to anyone, especially to other history 'nerds' like me. As it is the type of book that lives on even after you turn the last page. No matter how many times I've read it, it never seems to lose my interest. It is a very popular book used in schools, but I think people of all ages can relate and feel connected in some way to this story and the characters within it, not just children. After reading I can't help but think Words can't even describe how much this book means to me. I would recommend it to anyone, especially to other history 'nerds' like me. As it is the type of book that lives on even after you turn the last page. No matter how many times I've read it, it never seems to lose my interest. It is a very popular book used in schools, but I think people of all ages can relate and feel connected in some way to this story and the characters within it, not just children. After reading I can't help but think about the characters and I feel sympathy for them, particularly Tommo. I imagine him still fighting for survival at the front, still grieving. Did he survive? I would like to 'yes' for his family's sake, so that he can live out a final dying wish. However with a war like that he has a lot to live up to. A very interesting issue is raised by the Author, and that is the unfairness of war. This was shown particularly in Charlie's unjustified death. As reading it I couldn't help but feel helpless, just like Tommo. It just goes to show, there are no good guys or bad guys in war, just some very innocent people.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Katie.dorny

    I always finish this boom with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat. Definitely an all time favourite. The life of Tommy peaceful and his brother Charlie are documented in this 187 page book. It’s a very quick read as well. I’ve read this many times throughout my life and will continue to do so as it is so well written and it isn’t just a kids book but a book for everyone. The novels follows their childhood up to their conscription into the army to fight in World War 1 and the difficulties o I always finish this boom with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat. Definitely an all time favourite. The life of Tommy peaceful and his brother Charlie are documented in this 187 page book. It’s a very quick read as well. I’ve read this many times throughout my life and will continue to do so as it is so well written and it isn’t just a kids book but a book for everyone. The novels follows their childhood up to their conscription into the army to fight in World War 1 and the difficulties of surviving and finding fleeting happiness together in their lives as soldiers. It’s a beautifully written book that will make you emotionally. But I highly recommend to everyone

  5. 4 out of 5

    Olivia McMullan

    This is the second book I have read of Michael Morpurgo and I loved it. I love it just like the first book. It has left a mark on me, a very deep that will stay with me forever. The writing was amazing and the plot was just so good. When reading this I felt all the feelings and I felt extremely attached to all the characters, maybe not the horrible ones but all the nice ones. It has certainly made me feel that what they did and how the soilders were being treating during the first world war. It wa This is the second book I have read of Michael Morpurgo and I loved it. I love it just like the first book. It has left a mark on me, a very deep that will stay with me forever. The writing was amazing and the plot was just so good. When reading this I felt all the feelings and I felt extremely attached to all the characters, maybe not the horrible ones but all the nice ones. It has certainly made me feel that what they did and how the soilders were being treating during the first world war. It was horrendous and disgraceful. It really makes me think about my life and how lucky I am. All those soilders who died for us. True Heroes. This book made me laugh, cry, feel angry, hurt, betrayed. It truly was a breathtaking novel. I feel like my heart has been ripped out of my chest and thrown on the floor. Thanks Michael. 😭😢 I look forward to reading more of his books. They have not let me down. If anyone is looking for a heart wrenching story to read. I recommend this one.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kate

    Im 13, and we read this book in my english class. Before I read this I never understood WW1 and WW2 but it opened my eyes to the suffering and sadness of it all. I think the author was brilliant to not go straight to the trenches, but go through Tommo's whole life first. I became to love Tommo alot as he grew up, and Charlie too. When they go to war it is just so miserable and sad and I now think all soldiers in the war, and ww2 were complete heroes and dont get enough credit for what they did f Im 13, and we read this book in my english class. Before I read this I never understood WW1 and WW2 but it opened my eyes to the suffering and sadness of it all. I think the author was brilliant to not go straight to the trenches, but go through Tommo's whole life first. I became to love Tommo alot as he grew up, and Charlie too. When they go to war it is just so miserable and sad and I now think all soldiers in the war, and ww2 were complete heroes and dont get enough credit for what they did for us! If you know a soldier, knew one, or were one, thankyou so much! Private Peaceful opened my eyes. Infact I couldnt stop crying over war and those brave soldiers :( I find it sad how Private Peaceful was a real person! He had a life, he wasnt just a guy who died. Right before he died in world war 1 he probably remembered his first day of school, all the loves and losses he experienced. And before this book was written he would never have been remembered, like the thousands of other soldiers that are now just a grave. I will always remember them. Tommo is such a nice character, he and Charlie are both so brave. Because you follow them from such a young age it is hard to imagine them as young men fighting for their country. This inspired me to learn more about war. I went on to watch Saving Private Ryan about WW2 which is so sad and horrific. Its strange because you only hear about it in books and watch movies about it but this actually happened to good people. Some were only 16. They had their whole life ahead of them, but they were just shot down :) I dont think we should ever forget the bravery and pain. So the next time you see an old man walking really slow down the street.. Dont underestimate him, just think of what he might have went through :)

  7. 5 out of 5

    Book Concierge

    Adapted from the book jacket: Private Thomas Peaceful has lied about his age and left his family behind to follow his older brother, Charlie, to France to fight in the First World War. Now, Tommo has one almost unendurable night, alone, fighting sleep, to reflect on his life. As the minutes slowly tick by, his memories are full of his childhood in the English countryside. His father, mother, brothers, and first love, Molly, come vividly alive in his mind. But every moment Tommo spends thinking a Adapted from the book jacket: Private Thomas Peaceful has lied about his age and left his family behind to follow his older brother, Charlie, to France to fight in the First World War. Now, Tommo has one almost unendurable night, alone, fighting sleep, to reflect on his life. As the minutes slowly tick by, his memories are full of his childhood in the English countryside. His father, mother, brothers, and first love, Molly, come vividly alive in his mind. But every moment Tommo spends thinking about his life means another moment closer to something he cannot bear to think about – a time when the war and its horrific consequences will change his life forever. My Reactions This is a gut-wrenching tale of brotherhood, loyalty, duty, love, courage and forgiveness. I loved the close bond between the brothers, both Tommo and Charlie, but also their brain-damaged brother Big Joe. I applauded their mother’s moral courage in the face of adversity. I felt uncomfortable with the actions of the Colonel, but recognized the British class system at work in the early 20th century. (Thank you, Downton Abbey.) This is not the first book about World War I that I have read, so I was familiar with the horrors of trench warfare and the brutal realities of a long siege, but I still cringed with fear and anxiety as I read about these young men (hardly older than boys) and what they faced. My heart about broke for Tommo and Charlie; I certainly didn’t see that end coming. I was very glad that Morpurgo added a Postscript and Author’s Note explaining some of the realities of this period in history and how the governments of Britain, New Zealand, Australia and the United States had such different responses to the soldiers who suffered psychological trauma on the battlefields. This is the third novel I’ve read by Morpurgo, after War Horse (also set in WWI), and An Elephant in the Garden (Dresden, during WW2). My reaction to the former was lukewarm, but I loved the latter. Private Peaceful is closer to “elephant” than “horse.”

  8. 5 out of 5

    Chelsea

    • review also posted on Wordpress! • rating: 1.5 stars *warning: review contains spoilers!* Don't let my new rating system fool you: this is not an awful book. However, at times, I really disliked reading it. That's why I could only rate this one star. I had to read this for college, but didn't have time to post a review yet. I had to evaluate whether this could be used in the classroom and create an activity based on the book. Please note I am going to review my own enjoyment (or lack thereof), n • review also posted on Wordpress! • rating: 1.5 stars *warning: review contains spoilers!* Don't let my new rating system fool you: this is not an awful book. However, at times, I really disliked reading it. That's why I could only rate this one star. I had to read this for college, but didn't have time to post a review yet. I had to evaluate whether this could be used in the classroom and create an activity based on the book. Please note I am going to review my own enjoyment (or lack thereof), not its usefulness during an English lesson. The main character's voice seemed targeted towards young children. Therefore, I could not connect to him, the other characters and the story. At the beginning, Thomas is still a boy. I'd say he's twelve years old, tops. And you can definitely tell. When Thomas gets older, I didn't even notice it. His voice remained childish. Thomas claims he loves Charlie and Molly, but actually complains about them most of the time. He puts them on a pedestal, but is constantly jealous of them. The author felt the need to confirm how straight Thomas actually is. By no means am I saying that children cannot realise their sexuality at a young age. Neither do I claim that kids don't get crushes. However, there was only one female character (besides his mother) and of course, Thomas 'loves' her. His attitude towards her really bothered me. When he thinks he is going to die, he wants Molly to be his last thought. This girl is married to his brother and pregnant with his child! Do I even need to explain how disturbing this is? Thomas never gets over his childhood crush and it is creepy. Furthermore, he never once explains why he 'loves' Molly. We know nothing about her personality. One might think the only reason he likes her, is because she is a girl. Either the characters are portrayed as saints or they were evil villains. That is not realistic. Every person does both good and bad things. I am not even talking about the war here. I know people where capable of doing terrible things then. But let's talk about Colonel for example. The reason why he hates the Peaceful's is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. He wants to evict them because a boy with special needs blows raspberries at him?! He actually murders his dog?! Someone call Days of Our Lives and The Bold and the Beautiful, they are missing one of their writers! It was so dramatic, I couldn't take it seriously. I even came across a plot hole: Molly was not allowed to see any of the Peaceful's anymore. Yet she meets Thomas in secret in the woods, to give him letters he has to hand over to Charlie. Why don't Charlie and Molly just meet instead? She isn't allowed to see Thomas either, so this doesn't make any sense. If I don't like a character, I won't enjoy the story. So, when Charlie died, I did not feel bad for him. I don't want to blame the victim, but he really could have avoided things getting too far. But no, he chose to be arrogant and insult his sergeant instead. I do think the postcript's message was beautiful. Unfortunately, this book focussed much more on Thomas' childhood instead. conclusion: I was excited to start this, because a lot of people ended up feeling heartbroken after finishing it. Sadly, I did not feel the same, as I did not care about any of the characters and the plot.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Krista the Krazy Kataloguer

    A British teenage boy follows his brother into the army during World War I and is sent to the trenches in France. Describes how men who broke under the stress of war were shot as deserters. Pair this with Marcus Sedgwick's The Foreshadowing for a grim picture of the realities of war.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Naomi

    I first read "Private Peaceful" when I was about ten years old and I remember that it had a great impression on me. I borrowed it from the school library without particularly high expectations. I had read some of Morpurgo's work before and although I had enjoyed it I recall thinking that this book looked decidely dull. However, when I began to read the story I found it to be both historically interesting and fantastically gripping. It was the first book that really made me cry which just goes to I first read "Private Peaceful" when I was about ten years old and I remember that it had a great impression on me. I borrowed it from the school library without particularly high expectations. I had read some of Morpurgo's work before and although I had enjoyed it I recall thinking that this book looked decidely dull. However, when I began to read the story I found it to be both historically interesting and fantastically gripping. It was the first book that really made me cry which just goes to show how effective it was emotionally. It also sparked off a fascination with World War One which continues to this day as I prepare to take my History GCSE. For a long time after reading the book I continued to name it as my favourite ever book. Unlike many other books that have had a large effect on me I have only read "Private Peaceful" once because I am worried that if I reread it I will be disappointed and that my memories of this wonderful book will be tainted by an underwhelming second reading. However, I would definately recommend the book to anyone and I will always remember the enjoyment it provided for my ten year old self.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Oziel Bispo

    Tommo e Charlie são dois irmãos, apaixonados pela mesma garota, que vivem em um pequeno vilarejo da Inglaterra no princípio da primeira guerra mundial. Ambos se alistam para a guerra deixando para trás o amor de suas vidas. Esse livro teve grande influência , pois através do seu autor , que mostrou os efeitos psicológicos da guerra, do campo de batalha, fez com que o governo britânico perdoasse postumamente os que foram acusados de covardia. Aproximadamente 300 Britânicos foram levados à corte m Tommo e Charlie são dois irmãos, apaixonados pela mesma garota, que vivem em um pequeno vilarejo da Inglaterra no princípio da primeira guerra mundial. Ambos se alistam para a guerra deixando para trás o amor de suas vidas. Esse livro teve grande influência , pois através do seu autor , que mostrou os efeitos psicológicos da guerra, do campo de batalha, fez com que o governo britânico perdoasse postumamente os que foram acusados de covardia. Aproximadamente 300 Britânicos foram levados à corte marcial e condenados com fuzilamentos. Os julgamentos eram feitos em menos de uma hora sem nenhuma chance de defesa...na verdade um julgamento viciado, injusto. Um livro emocionante!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rob Twinem

    One of the most tragic events of the 20th century was the senseless slaughter and sacrifice of many young men on the battlefields of the Somme,Verdun and Passchendaele. The iconic 1914 recruitment poster of Lord Kitchener, wearing a cap of a British Field Marshall, stares and points at the viewer pleading to their sense of allegiance and responsibility by declaring..."Your country needs you" The specially constituted "pals battalions" resulted in friends, neighbours and colleagues enlisting toge One of the most tragic events of the 20th century was the senseless slaughter and sacrifice of many young men on the battlefields of the Somme,Verdun and Passchendaele. The iconic 1914 recruitment poster of Lord Kitchener, wearing a cap of a British Field Marshall, stares and points at the viewer pleading to their sense of allegiance and responsibility by declaring..."Your country needs you" The specially constituted "pals battalions" resulted in friends, neighbours and colleagues enlisting together at local recruiting drives with the promise that they could serve alongside each other. However many of these battalions sustained heavy causalities and this had a significant impact on their communities at home. In the small Devon town of Hatherleigh lives young Tommo Peaceful with his brother Charlie and the girl they both adore, Molly. This is family life, village life, captured in the idyllic Devon countryside before the encroachment and black clouds of world war 1 destroys the dreams and aspirations of so many in pointless sacrifice ensuring that life would never be the same again....."We'd lie amongst the grass and buttercups of the water meadows and look up at the clouds scudding across the sky, at the wind-whipped crows chasing a mewing buzzard"....Tommo and Charlie are gripped in the romantic notion of helping to eradicate the threat of the Hun who were attempting to grow their military might and realize their imperialistic ambitions. So the two brothers and close friends from the village march blindly off to war where the initial patriotic enthusiasm dies tragically amidst pointless butchering when the reality of war is revealed...."I could no longer pretend to myself that I believed in a merciful god nor in a heaven, not anymore, not after I had seen what men could do to one another. I could believe only in the hell I was living in, a hell on earth and it was man-made, not God-made"......."the terror that is engulfing me and invading me, destroying any last glimmer of courage and composure I may have left. All I have left now is my fear".... Michael Morpurgo expertly portrays the senseless slaughter and sacrifice of world war 1 to a young impressionable adult audience. This is achieved by comparing the beauty and peacefulness of the English countryside with the shell ravaged mud filled trenches of France....this was the raw reality of war. Private Peaceful is a sombre novel to be read by young and old. It's simplistic language is very effective in creating an image of a time when the romantic notion of war quickly became a vision of hell and where the loss of millions was seen as an acceptable price for the march of imperialism and the misguided ambitions of WW1 military leaders. Highly Recommended.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ginny Potter

    In Private Peaceful, a sixteen-year-old boy by the name of Thomas Peaceful lies about his age and goes to fight in the war with his older brother Charlie. There, all they have is each other, even if they have to often be careful what they say around each other. Many unwanted emotions could come up if one of them mentions their mother, who is still back at home, or Thomas's first love, Molly, who ended up marrying Charlie. However, they soon start to worry endlessly about their futures. After all In Private Peaceful, a sixteen-year-old boy by the name of Thomas Peaceful lies about his age and goes to fight in the war with his older brother Charlie. There, all they have is each other, even if they have to often be careful what they say around each other. Many unwanted emotions could come up if one of them mentions their mother, who is still back at home, or Thomas's first love, Molly, who ended up marrying Charlie. However, they soon start to worry endlessly about their futures. After all, this is war, and people get hurt and die. If something happens to one of them, how will the other one be able to move on? Private Peaceful was seriously an amazing story. I feel like it really made me appreciate everything that I have in life, especially the things I would usually take for granted, such as good health, family, and a home. I hope this book helps others appreciate the simple things in life, just like it did for me. Prior to reading this book, I had always thought that in order for something to be beautiful, it had to be something that made people happy. However, after reading Private Peaceful, I have realized that so many thing in life can be beautiful, yet sad at the same time. This is evident all throughout the story, but especially at the end of it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Nathaniel_E1

    This book is a realistic historical fiction novel about a man called Thomas Peaceful. He and his brother are called to fight in WW1, and this book is about the horrors of war and the disasters that destroy Thomas Peaceful's life. I think you would like this book if you like historical fiction and learning about other's lives.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Private peaceful is set in the WWI era, and time of sorrow for many countries. It takes place in Iddesleigh. In the beginning you have no idea the book is about war if you didn't keep reading, or look at the title first. It talks about the characters' child hoods, and eventually how the war starts to change things as they get older. There are many great characters in the book but one that stands out most is Charlie Peaceful. He always stands up for what he thinks is right, and it really encourag Private peaceful is set in the WWI era, and time of sorrow for many countries. It takes place in Iddesleigh. In the beginning you have no idea the book is about war if you didn't keep reading, or look at the title first. It talks about the characters' child hoods, and eventually how the war starts to change things as they get older. There are many great characters in the book but one that stands out most is Charlie Peaceful. He always stands up for what he thinks is right, and it really encourages me to do the same. Even with the consequences he faces, he does what's best. It's really incredible to read. Tommo Peaceful, Charlie's younger brother really looks up to him. He goes through the most emotional stress that you know of in this story. In the beginning he blames himself for killing his father, after he rescued him from a falling tree. Then there's Molly. Molly makes the trio complete. In their childhood every day Tommo, Charlie, and Molly hang out together. It's perfect until Tommo realizes Molly and Charlie are in love, for he loves her too. You also meet their other brother Big Joe, who has a mental disability. He loves to sing Oranges and Lemons, which has a great significance at the end. When Molly gets kicked out of her house for being pregnant with Charlie's son, she comes to live with Mama, and Big Joe. Charlie must go off to war, and Tommo joins him. He wants to be with Charlie again. To be his best friend. The rest of the story is about them fighting at war. Charlie at the end stays with the hurt Tommo, disobeying orders, and get the death sentence. He asks Tommo to take care of Molly and Little Tommo, and is killed at the end singing Oranges and Lemons, and the really demonstrates his bravery. Tommo never gives up his promise, and takes care of the family. I believe one theme here is to always cherish what you have. charlie did, and was always happy. he never whined or complained about anything. Next, everything happens for a reason. Don't let guilt suck you up. Tommo had a seriously hard time with this. In the end he realizes it's not his fault, with the help of Charlie, which I'm sure raises a lot of weight off his shoulders. I think we all need to know and remember these things like Charlie and Tommo. "He closed his eyes and as he waits he sings softly 'Oranges and Lemons, say the bells of St. Clements.'" This is significant because that is what Charlie does as he's about to die. Showing bravery, and a remembrance of home. These couple sentences point out the big the theme in the book, and that's why they're so important. I just wonder how Charlie does it. It's crazy to think you could sing after all he lived through and is about to die for no reason. I'm very glad that Tommo find peace at the end. Charlie is the greatest brother out there I'd say. I think everyone would love this book. We could recommend it to many soldiers who know what they're going through in the story, and who need a bit of reassurance and courage that everything will be okay in the end.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn Grabowski

    Priavate Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo, is rich in history and leaves the reader pondering the next sequence of events. In World War One the Peaceful's are struggling to keep a house on the Colonel's property with the recent death of their father. A strong possible option is war.Morpurgo develops both the main character, Thomas, also known as Tommo, and sub characters like real people. The characters are engaging with their human strengths and weaknesses. The characters are developed directly; mo Priavate Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo, is rich in history and leaves the reader pondering the next sequence of events. In World War One the Peaceful's are struggling to keep a house on the Colonel's property with the recent death of their father. A strong possible option is war.Morpurgo develops both the main character, Thomas, also known as Tommo, and sub characters like real people. The characters are engaging with their human strengths and weaknesses. The characters are developed directly; mostly through Tommo and Charlie's conversations and interactions. Charlie, Tommo's older brother, helps reveal an implied theme; one's courage doesn't necessarily help in a time of war. With the choice of enlisting for the war in the minds of the brothers, courage is racing through their blood. The brothers choose combat, and on the battle field Charlie more than ever is courageous and bold towards his Sergeant. However, will his courage help or hurt in the long run in the bitter time of war?Michael Morpurgo's purpose of Private Peaceful, was to engross the reader in a book while teaching one about life and choices families dealt with in World War One. Morpurgo's purpose was only partly achieved. The story was at points boring and seemed unrelated to what the book was about. The first quarter of the story had nothing to do with war and the word was only mentioned once or twice leaving one wondering if war was ever going to occur. Although Morpurgo failed to captivate the reader, he did succeed in incorporating facts about World War One. The setting helped Morpurgo, from the battlefield, to no man's land, the home front and trenches, all helped him achieve the task of intertwining the history of World War One. The plot was yet another element that achieved the history aspect of Morpurgo's purpose. The inciting incident of the possible enlistment of soldiers and Charlie and Tommo's acceptance leaves one to wonder what will happen to the brothers on the break of war. After the choice is made Morpurgo has set himself up to fire out facts. As Morpurgo sets himself to beyond achieve his purpose in incorporating facts, he leaves some readers uninterested, but somehow grabs their attention again with the rising action and climax. Morgpurgo does a fantastic job with his skills of incorporation, but he loses his readers in the beginning, with what seems like an on going sequence of pointless events.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Chloe

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Private Peaceful is an engaging, quick read that captures the heartbreak, love, and loss associated with World War I. The book takes place in England both before and during the war. The setting feels authentic and fits the story perfectly, letting you be fully enthralled in it's beauty . Tommo, the main character, hasn't had an easy life. His father died in front of him when he was a child, and this brought a sense of darkness that he hadn't seen before. Ever sense, Tommo was a changed person, a Private Peaceful is an engaging, quick read that captures the heartbreak, love, and loss associated with World War I. The book takes place in England both before and during the war. The setting feels authentic and fits the story perfectly, letting you be fully enthralled in it's beauty . Tommo, the main character, hasn't had an easy life. His father died in front of him when he was a child, and this brought a sense of darkness that he hadn't seen before. Ever sense, Tommo was a changed person, and even blamed himself for what happened. The beginning of the book follows Tommo as a child, coping with the loss of his father and living in a financially unstable family. He and his older brother, Charlie, shared one friend, Molly. They were the perfect trio, always playing games and enjoying each others company. The boys both loved Molly. This part of the book was very enjoyable to read, and showcases a side of Tommo where he really just wants to be happy. As they get older, Tommo starts to feel like the odd one out in the trio. Tommo's emotions were very believable and enforced my belief that all the characters in this book were incredibly dynamic as a whole. Being the third one out was a feeling Tommo had for years until it finally hit the breaking point. This was when Molly became pregnant as a teenager with Charlie's baby. Tommo felt betrayed and resentful as the couple got married, but tried to stay happy, as he loved them both deeply. Shortly after this, the war started to impact their lives severely. Charlie was forced to go to war, and Tommo volunteered. This outlines the theme of bravery and courage that laces through the pages. The rest of the book deals with the war and how it effects the boys. The atmosphere is now gloomy and heavy. A feeling of desperation hangs in the air. The climax of the book sets in, and suspense becomes a strong element. The war is intense and believable, like a nightmare. The tense changes to the present during the resolution, and Tommo is heartbroken, but still optimistic. Overall, this is a fantastic book that made me laugh and shed tears of emotion. I could appreciate the thoughtfulness the author put into his characters and this made the book that much better. Reading this was an experience I won't soon forget.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Joey Gyarmathy

    Set in Britain in the early 1900s a young boy named Thomas Peaceful, nicknamed Tommo, is faced with incredible hardship. Tommo lives on an estate of a bitterly mean Colonel with his brother Charlie, who often seems to be a hero in the face of figures who threaten Tommo, and their peers,Big Joe, their older brother, who suffers from a mental disability,and their mother who takes good care of all the boys in their mischievous excursions.When Tommo first started school he was faced with difficulty Set in Britain in the early 1900s a young boy named Thomas Peaceful, nicknamed Tommo, is faced with incredible hardship. Tommo lives on an estate of a bitterly mean Colonel with his brother Charlie, who often seems to be a hero in the face of figures who threaten Tommo, and their peers,Big Joe, their older brother, who suffers from a mental disability,and their mother who takes good care of all the boys in their mischievous excursions.When Tommo first started school he was faced with difficulty finding friends, soon after he finds friendship and security in a girl, older than him who is currently friends with his brother, Charlie. This girl, named Molly becomes a lifelong friend, and Tommo soon develops a love interest with her. These three friends go on adventures and do anything they can to help their mother keep the home. As time goes on, Molly becomes closer to the Peaceful's family, and Charlie and Molly develop a romantic relationship.Faced with strong jealousy and feelings of betrayal towards his brother, Tommo tries to find a way to prove himself. After several weeks, the family is offered an ultimatum. The Colonel tells the Peaceful's mother that unless Charlie joins the military, the family will be evicted. Charlie decides that he will join, and with an attempt of courage, Tommo says he will join also. Again, through boot camp, Charlie showcases his heroic side, when being wise to his sour officers. Continuing to protect Tommo, Charlie continues to share a strong bond with his younger brother. Soon later the boys are deployed to fight off the Germans in Belgium. At this point, the boys are finally exposed to the conditions of the front lines. This novel showcases the less valiant side of war. It shows the hardships and unsanitary conditions soldiers faced on the front lines, the almost constant, and incredible fear these troops had, and the bond of brotherhood in the military. In this novel, the dishonorable and unjustifiable actions within the military are displayed, and the reader will learn of the unjust scenarios that were far from rare within the army. I would absolutely recommend this novel to everyone that enjoys an eye-opening story

  19. 5 out of 5

    CoryHoneyBadger SlapAAshliTribeVickers

    Thomas Peaceful’s life has not been easy. His father died in a logging accident while saving his life. Thomas's family endures much hardship at the hands of his father's former employer and a great-aunt. Thomas also has to protect his mentally challenged oldest brother, Big Joe. Through the trials and tribulations of his young life, Thomas has his older brother and best friend Charlie by his side.The First World War is at hand when they age up and become madely in love with a girl named Molly.Th Thomas Peaceful’s life has not been easy. His father died in a logging accident while saving his life. Thomas's family endures much hardship at the hands of his father's former employer and a great-aunt. Thomas also has to protect his mentally challenged oldest brother, Big Joe. Through the trials and tribulations of his young life, Thomas has his older brother and best friend Charlie by his side.The First World War is at hand when they age up and become madely in love with a girl named Molly.The brothers enlist into the military and Are glad to hea they are going to the front lines but, worry hen they will be able to see their family again. I realy enjoyed reading this book and give it 5 stars in my review! *Plot Discussions and Spoilers Below* Characters: Thomas:A mature young boy that feels guilty for the death of his dad and is in love with Molly and becomes jealous of his older Brother and enlists in the Army underaged. Charlie: The older brother who is force to enlist. Gets molly pregnant and protects his brothers from anything, even if it means disobeying orders to save his brothers life that thratens his. Momma: A strong women who is forced to take a job and deals with the hardships of being a widow Pappa: The dad who is killed in a logging accedent by saving his son. The Colonel: Rich retired man who served in the army and has his own estates. Sgt.Blackburn : Sgt. who dislikes Charlie and forces the harshest punishment upon him when he does wrong. Protagonist; Charlie @ Thomas : They deal with the harshest of problems at young age and do it together. Antgaonist: The harshnes of the world @ Sgt.Blackburn: they both have no mercy upon the 2 brothers and end up taking many lives and a love. The way they struggle through the war and are forced into a suicide attempt to cross a bunker way called "No Mans Land",that is guarded by a turret of Germans. They disobey orders from their commander and end up taking the death penalty from the court of Army and take Charlies life by saving Thomas by not going. This is a truley amazing book that caught my short intension spand and was glad that i took the time to read this.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Leora Cohen-Tigör

    Leora Cohen-Tigör Period 5 2/25/14 The stage is set on the harrowing battlefield. A young man, Private Peaceful, as he is known, is counting down the hours until his untimely death. As the minutes tick by, he watches his life flash in front of his own eyes. He sees how unsure of himself he was as a little child; his ultimate loneliness as his brother leaves him to go off to school. When his brother joins the “Bigguns” in the upper school, he is left stranded with the “Tiddlers”, the lower school Leora Cohen-Tigör Period 5 2/25/14 The stage is set on the harrowing battlefield. A young man, Private Peaceful, as he is known, is counting down the hours until his untimely death. As the minutes tick by, he watches his life flash in front of his own eyes. He sees how unsure of himself he was as a little child; his ultimate loneliness as his brother leaves him to go off to school. When his brother joins the “Bigguns” in the upper school, he is left stranded with the “Tiddlers”, the lower school. However, he finds his true joy in Molly, his only friend in the school. He knows from the moment that he met her that he would love her forever. Even though his love for Molly is strong, his hatred for himself is stronger. He believes he sent his own father to his untimely death, by a mistake with a falling tree. So when his older brother Charlie’s dog dies, Molly gets pregnant by Charlie’s hand, and Charlie leaves for the army, Thomas, or as he likes to be called, Tommo feels as if his life is crumbling before his very eyes. So in a vain attempt to gain his control back in his life, he illegally joins the army, him being underage and is left with his complex feelings and his brother on and off the battlefield. This is a story of love, law, and the true meaning of war. War is not only waged on the battleground, but inside the hearts of others. Author Michael Morpurgo exquisitely paints a picture of the life on and off the battlefield. He makes the reader feel the excruciating losses and tremendous gains that all the characters within his tale endure. He creates a connection between the players in his story and the readers, that ties in all the emotions through that link, making the book an enticing and wonderful read. He not only shows the views through the eyes of the characters on the battle field, but also through those left at home; where the heart of the family is. This story is divinely written by a very capable author who portraits the dimensions of life; the loss, the affection, and the complexity that makes us all human.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Austin St.

    The story is about a young teenager named Tomas "Tommo" Peaceful. He tells us about the experiences he had living in his home village during World War I. His oldest brother, Big Joe, has learning disabilities and is often times looked out by his younger brothers. Thomas had another brother named Charlie, whom he spent a lot of his time with prior to the war. Before the war, he tells us about the pretty girl named Molly, a wonderful girl he met on the first day of school. Tommo knew from the mome The story is about a young teenager named Tomas "Tommo" Peaceful. He tells us about the experiences he had living in his home village during World War I. His oldest brother, Big Joe, has learning disabilities and is often times looked out by his younger brothers. Thomas had another brother named Charlie, whom he spent a lot of his time with prior to the war. Before the war, he tells us about the pretty girl named Molly, a wonderful girl he met on the first day of school. Tommo knew from the moment that he met her that he would love her forever. However, his brother Charlie feels the same way about Molly. Thomas, Charlie, and Molly do everything together, and everything seems to be falling into place until Molly begins to fall in love with Charlie. This breaks Tommo's heart and he feels isolated from the two of them. Molly's parents forbade her seeing Charlie and Tommo. Despite this, Molly and Charlie continue to see each other by meeting in secret. Tommo would help send letters they would write to each other. Soon after, Molly is kicked out of her house for being pregnant with Charlie's child. Following this, the Colonel who is the owner of the Peaceful's household forces Charlie to go to war or their house would be taken from them. Tommo has followed Charlie through thick and thin and this is no exception, Tommo also joins the war with Charlie. The real question emerges from this, will the two brother be able to hold on to their courage through out the war? I enjoyed reading Micheal Morpugo's "Private Peaceful". The book really hooked me from the first couple of chapters. The book very engaging to read, and has a unimaginable ending. Despite the time period from which this book in written, the reader can relate some of the characters struggles in to their own daily lives. The book displays the true hardships of war, and shows us the loses and gains of war. As well as the emotion pain as a result of the war. This book is a great read for really annoying for enjoys a fairly short but action pact novel.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Derek Bruce

    Charlie, an eighteen year old boy was living a good life, is struck in the face of war, specifically World War I, and is forced to go. The real question is should his younger brother, Tommo, go with him. Tommo and Charlie lived a happy life in England, in a simple little town where no big problems really occur. With the brink of war at hand however, the army is recruiting any boy of age to fight, which Charlie was. Tommo, however, was not. Tommo is sixteen years old at the time, and the military Charlie, an eighteen year old boy was living a good life, is struck in the face of war, specifically World War I, and is forced to go. The real question is should his younger brother, Tommo, go with him. Tommo and Charlie lived a happy life in England, in a simple little town where no big problems really occur. With the brink of war at hand however, the army is recruiting any boy of age to fight, which Charlie was. Tommo, however, was not. Tommo is sixteen years old at the time, and the military cutoff is seventeen years of age. He still decides to go, because he wanted to be with his brother when times were hard. In war, the two brothers spent several hardships together, spending weeks in the miserable conditions that came with the use of trench warfare. Several of their friends died right in front of their eyes, and witnessed both enemies and allies shot down and killed. They both made sure the two of them would stick together to the very end. Private Peaceful gives a perfect description of a regular boy who goes through all of the perils of war. The book is filled to the brim with death, struggle, torture, and heart-wrenching tragedies. The characters are really well developed, where you could tell what was going through each character's mind at any moment, and understand who they were as a person. The problems soldiers had fighting in the war with the new weapons and methods of fighting that were even more deadly than ever before in war were perfectly described. The boys never knew what would happen the next day, and when they may get shot, and wouldn’t be able to see the next time the sun rises. When I picked the book up at first, I couldn’t put it down, and I don’t particularly find war books as my cup of tea. I couldn’t believe how well-written the book was and how into reading the book I was. Private Peaceful is a great book for teenagers my age, whether you are a war freak or not.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Alexa Benware

    Private peaceful is a book that gives each word a new meaning, something that gives the reader a new perspective on a family living through difficult times. What you thought you knew about life during war, alters. Private Peaceful tells of one's journey through life through the eyes of two brothers, Thomas, referred to as Tommo, and his older brother Charlie- the bold-minded boy who is not afraid to speak his mind to anyone about anything. As these two grow up with war in the backs of their mind Private peaceful is a book that gives each word a new meaning, something that gives the reader a new perspective on a family living through difficult times. What you thought you knew about life during war, alters. Private Peaceful tells of one's journey through life through the eyes of two brothers, Thomas, referred to as Tommo, and his older brother Charlie- the bold-minded boy who is not afraid to speak his mind to anyone about anything. As these two grow up with war in the backs of their mind, and their family in the middle of their heart, they make life and death decisions that could end up getting them executed-and not by the enemy. After the death of their father, the Peaceful family lives in a cottage on the Colonel's property, trying to make ends meet. These brothers are raised by their widowed mother, along with their special and loud brother Big Joe. They grow up alongside a girl named Molly, who is a bit older than Tommo. Over the years she transforms into the family's light of hope. For she holds onto hope for the entire family in times of despair. The Peaceful family raises Molly as practically one of their own. Through triumph and loss, the Peaceful struggles to keep their family together when World War I is invading their homes and personal lives. The author's purpose of writing Private Peaceful was to likely describe in great detail the state of mind of a family in a war where their family is divided. This book gave each character a well developed personality, which was a great strength of the author in this piece. However, I felt that Private Peaceful dragged in some parts of the story... I would only recommend this book to those who enjoy history and reading about it. Some other flaws I noticed in the story were that many parts repeated, not creating much diversity in the story. So, that is the main reason I would give Private Peaceful only three stars.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    I seem to have read quite a few novels about the 1914-18 war. It is a subject which interests me - novels which detail the personal experiences of its characters in the war. This novel is ostensibly written for older children/young adults by the author of the more famous War Horse (which I have also read). It is, however, worth adding this novel to the library of anyone having an interest in the subject. Even though the novel is aimed at the younger reader, it doesn't shy away from telling a hard I seem to have read quite a few novels about the 1914-18 war. It is a subject which interests me - novels which detail the personal experiences of its characters in the war. This novel is ostensibly written for older children/young adults by the author of the more famous War Horse (which I have also read). It is, however, worth adding this novel to the library of anyone having an interest in the subject. Even though the novel is aimed at the younger reader, it doesn't shy away from telling a hard hitting story, which is often harrowing. The central characters, Charlie Peaceful and his younger brother Thomas, and their older brother Joe (who is disabled) have been brought up by their widowed mother in rural Devon. Life has been tough for the family financially and they are beholden to the elderly Colonel on whose estate they live (tied cottage) and for whom Mrs Peaceful works in order to retain their home. The Colonel exerts a huge influence over the people who work on his estate and it is he who forces the two brothers to enlist despite Tommo being under age and Charlie having just married his pregnant girlfriend, Molly. Charlie is a very confident, often outspoken, young man who is unafraid of standing up to authority when he senses an injustice. This does not bode well in the army. His encounters with the brutal Sergeant Hanley at the training camp in Etaples leave his card marked. Each chapter is entitled with a time, beginning with "Five Past Ten" and ending with "One Minute to Six". The introductory paragraph to each chapter builds the picture gradually so that the reader slowly begins to realise where this is heading. It is nevertheless a shock. Whilst I enjoyed the novel, I would have serious misgivings about my children reading it until quite a bit older.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Grace

    Thomas (Tommo) Peaceful has always lived within the footsteps of his older brother, Charlie Peaceful. The two brothers do everything together, and whenever something happens to Tommo, Charlie is always right there to protect him. But the one thing Charlie can't protect him from is the guilt he feels for his father's death, which was an accident when a tree fell on him; but he can try to help him through it. On his first day on school, Thomas meets his soon to be, love of his life, Molly. Coincid Thomas (Tommo) Peaceful has always lived within the footsteps of his older brother, Charlie Peaceful. The two brothers do everything together, and whenever something happens to Tommo, Charlie is always right there to protect him. But the one thing Charlie can't protect him from is the guilt he feels for his father's death, which was an accident when a tree fell on him; but he can try to help him through it. On his first day on school, Thomas meets his soon to be, love of his life, Molly. Coincidentally, Charlie falls in love with her too. The three do everything together after that, and everything seems perfect, until Molly falls in love with Charlie. Molly's parents forbade her from seeing the Peacefuls, but Charlie and Molly continue meeting in secret, and sending letters. Molly is soon kicked out of their house, since she has become pregnant; with Charlie's baby. The Colonel, their employer and owner of their house, forces Charlie to go to war, and Tommo follows, like always. Will they both be strong enough to survive the war? I thoroughly enjoyed reading Michael Morpugo's 'Private Peaceful.' It was an engaging, historically accurate book, with a riveting plot. It wholly narrates the emotions and thoughts of all sides during the war. Although this book is set in the past, the reader is able to relate some of the characters' experiences to their own today. 'Private Peaceful' also illustrates the costs and gains of war, and the physical and emotional pain dealt with as a result of the war. Morpugo is a savvy author, and 'Private Peaceful' is definitely a worthwhile read for anyone that enjoys a good story, but also can appreciate some of the historical references woven in.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Igor

    • Igor Kovalyov • APA citation: Morpurgo, M. (2003). Private Peaceful. London: Collins. • Genre: Historical Fiction • Awards (If applicable): N/A • Format: Print • Selection Process: Recommendation • Review: Private Peaceful is a wonderful read for any age. Targeted to pre-teens this story takes place during World War I and is told by Thomas. Thomas is the younger brother to Charlie. We are treated to this story through a series of Thomas' memories of growing up with their older brother Big Joe and par • Igor Kovalyov • APA citation: Morpurgo, M. (2003). Private Peaceful. London: Collins. • Genre: Historical Fiction • Awards (If applicable): N/A • Format: Print • Selection Process: Recommendation • Review: Private Peaceful is a wonderful read for any age. Targeted to pre-teens this story takes place during World War I and is told by Thomas. Thomas is the younger brother to Charlie. We are treated to this story through a series of Thomas' memories of growing up with their older brother Big Joe and parents. The story is one that will tug at your heart as we watch characters go through the hardest ordeals in life, love and death. This book takes us on a roller coaster of emotion as we grow are put into the lives of these loveable characters. The story enters World War I and the brothers enlist. As Thomas recalls this terrible event of his brother and his death we see some amazing emotion throughout the book, simply a delightful read due to the well developed and realistic characters found throughout. The book contains twists to keep the reader entertained. The story shows Thomas and the emotion that he has towards everyone around him. It really is a warm look into the lives of these characters. Morpurgo does an amazing job at allowing the reader to connect to these characters that are ever evolving throughout the story as time passes. Personally I loved this story because it shows how strong love and a bond can be between people. As we find in the end of this story their brotherly bond was stronger than anything else and the consequences didn't matter. Simply a great read especially if you enjoy a good emotional trip into a time almost 100 years ago and despite the age difference the love and emotion resonates to today. • Recommendation: Highly Recommended

  27. 4 out of 5

    Anne

    I have been a fan of Michael Murpurgo for some time now and have enjoyed every book of his that I've read so far, but Private Peaceful takes his writing to another level. It's a long time since I've been moved so much by a story, this one left me with the same feeling as the end of 'The Boy In Striped Pyjamas'. I smiled and I cried and I wont forget this for a very long time - if ever. The story begins with Private Tommo Peaceful reflecting life from the battlefields of the First World War. He th I have been a fan of Michael Murpurgo for some time now and have enjoyed every book of his that I've read so far, but Private Peaceful takes his writing to another level. It's a long time since I've been moved so much by a story, this one left me with the same feeling as the end of 'The Boy In Striped Pyjamas'. I smiled and I cried and I wont forget this for a very long time - if ever. The story begins with Private Tommo Peaceful reflecting life from the battlefields of the First World War. He thinks back to his childhood fondly - memories of his late father, his loving mother, his much respected older brother Charlie, his slow but gentle brother Big Joe and not least his childhood love - Molly. His memories are those of innocence and friendship, hard-luck and love. As his story progresses, Tommo and Charlie join up to fight in the Great War - Tommo is only 15. They fight side by side and look after each other all the way. Each chapter is full of Tommo's memories, but each chapter also brings the reader closer to the present time - and to the life-changing moment that leaves you breathless. The ending of the story is stark, brutal, heart-rending and tragic. The tenderness of the writing and the loss felt by the reader is stunning. Although a book that is aimed at children and young adults - I would recommend that every adult read this - it's not a long story, but the message of the almost forgotten heroes of the First World War is vitally important - especially as the young men of our country are still giving their lives on a daily basis.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Michèle Velthuizen

    Interest level: 5th + Reading level: easy, short book Genre: historical fiction, World War I, WWI, soldiers Read alikes: War Horse, Kensuke's Kingdom Michael Morpurgo is one of my favorite authors, and this book is, in my opinion, one of his best. Incredibly, "Private Peaceful" is Michael Morpurgo's 100th book. "Private Peaceful"is a short and easy read but, boy, the story will stay with you for a long, long time. It takes place during WWI when many young men were eager to take part in the war. Some Interest level: 5th + Reading level: easy, short book Genre: historical fiction, World War I, WWI, soldiers Read alikes: War Horse, Kensuke's Kingdom Michael Morpurgo is one of my favorite authors, and this book is, in my opinion, one of his best. Incredibly, "Private Peaceful" is Michael Morpurgo's 100th book. "Private Peaceful"is a short and easy read but, boy, the story will stay with you for a long, long time. It takes place during WWI when many young men were eager to take part in the war. Some even faked their age to get enlisted. Thomas was one of these boys - he was only 14 when he followed his older brother, Charlie, to Europe as a soldier. The book describes all the horrors of the war and what life was like in the trenches (mud, rats, gas attacks, etc). The ending comes as a real shock, so beware..... If you enjoy this book try "War Horse" as well - it's an account of a horse that moves from a life on a farm to the battle fields of WWI. This is my second favorite book by Morpurgo. My third favorite book is "Kensuke's Kingdom" which is about a shipwrecked boy who discovers a Japanese soldier from WWII who has been living on the deserted island alone for decades without realizing that WWII was long over (based on true stories). Go to Michael Morpurgo's [ http://www.michaelmorpurgo.org/about_... ]website to find out more.... His website has good biographical information about him, it lists all his books, and it includes a top ten Q&A section.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    From BBC Radio 4 Extra: In WW1 over 300 British soldiers were executed by firing squad, some for desertion and cowardice. Many were traumatised by shell-shock. Some 90 years later they received posthumous pardons from the British Government, after a campaign helped by Michael Morpurgo's novel Private Peaceful .

  30. 4 out of 5

    Aryan Bhargava

    Awesome read. Definitely recommended. Full review up soon.

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