[EPUB] ✻ The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945 By Charles Ritchie – Motyourdrive.co.uk

The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945 summary The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945, series The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945, book The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945, pdf The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945, The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945 e476d094f6 Charles Ritchie, One Of Canada S Most Distinguished Diplomats, Was A Born Diarist, A Man Whose Daily Record Of His Life Is So Well Written That It Leaps From The Page In Wartime England, Ritchie, As Second Secretary At The Canadian High Commission, Served As Private Secretary To Vincent Massey, Whose Second In Command Was Lester B Pearson, Future Prime Minister Of Canada In A Perfect Position To Observe Both Statecraft And The London Social Whirl That Continued Even During The War, Ritchie Provides A Fascinating, Perceptive, And Surprisingly Humorous Picture Of The London Blitz The People In The Parks, The Shabby Streets, The Heightened Love Affairs And The Vagaries Of The British At War There Are Also Glimpses Of The Great, And Portraits Of Noted Artists And Writers That He Knew WellA Vivid Document Of A Period And A Wonderful Piece Of Writing, The Siren Years Has Become A Classic


10 thoughts on “The Siren Years: A Canadian Diplomat Abroad 1937-1945

  1. says:

    a university owned student run secondhand bookshop close to our old home decided one day, three years ago, to get rid of stagnant stock basically, you could come in and take whatever you wanted so my father descended on the store and, in effect, cleaned it out he took away so many books that one undergrad attendant, looking a little stunned, offered him a wheelie my father said thanks but no thanks why else do you think he d bought two children and a minivan with him.this was one of the books he brought home on the face of it, it looks like an interesting enough book so why can t i get through it i don t know i ve been trying for the last three years i keep picking it up, reading a few pages, and putting it down he writes well enough, though it s a bit smug, the kind of writing you d expect from a professional young male mingler he made me want to hit him across the head when he talked about his encounters with a black manservant in washington i suppose his sense of entitlement goes with the terrority he s a white guy working a fairly stable job in england, and he is selfconsciously aware of how little said job actually does, but hey, it has a lot of perks, so it must be worth something, right or not so he is droll about it droll can get irritating quickly basically, a hipster before his time.maybe i d appreciate it if i knew about the specific details of WWII, like the names of the canadian and british diplomats he mentions, and the dates that crop up as important to him, anyway there are lots of i feel today is the day everything changes that s what you d expect in an immediate account of things like war, or life maybe i just don t care about eurocentred narrative of WWII that s probably it the book was required reading for some course or another, likely an undergrad polsci course my copy s heavily marked up with green highlighting all over the place the highlighting was occasionally interesting the text why it is important that he went on a date and her skin was the softest thing he ever touched or that he had lunch one day with his former tutor maybe the kid was just trying to stay awake and thought randomly marking things would help him keep afloat i can relate i ve already wiled away too many hours over this book with my eyes closed and my mouth agape.anyway, i never finished the book and i likely never will, because it s off to goodwill.


  2. says:

    I m not sure where I first heard about this book but after learning it was the diary of a Canadian diplomat in the UK during WWII I was sold I d never read a direct account of someone in London during the blitz The fact that Ritchie was Canadian was a bonus.Charles Ritchie was a diplomat who acted as Ambassador to the United States and then the United Kingdom He lived through the London bombings and managed to paint a picture of public opinion that was contrary to Allied propaganda Something to consider is what Ritchie says about his own book Thinking over what I have written What a pack of lies intimate journals are, particularly if one tries too hard to be truthful The Good Reading personal diaries can be as exciting as watching grass grow but Ritchie s writing is engaging, descriptive and informative In another life he would have made a good journalist.The book was popular when published and even won the Governor General s Award for non fiction in 1974.Here s a sample of his delicious prose A week of air raids Our ears have grown sharp for the sounds of danger the humming menace that sweeps the sky, the long whistle like an indrawn breath as the bomb falls We are as continually alive to danger as animals in the jungle One alarming fact was how prescient Ritchie was in terms of the post war world Ten months after it began, May 1940 he wrote they tell us that the greatest battle in history is beginning London is sultry with the rumour of it The possibility of defeat appears in whispers and averted glances This idea of defeat and how public opinion evolved over the course of the war were most interesting parts for me.February 23, 1941 It is being dinned into my mind with persistence that after all we may be going to lost this war No one admits the possibility publicly but you could hardly expect us to do that May 2, 1941 We are in danger of losing the war As for england she will be outflanked on a world scale and left like the Maginot line, a graveyard of equipment and static armies with nothing to defend except herself In three months Ritchie went from may to are and you can be sure that his opinion was in keeping with popular opinion I know the propaganda machine made it look like the Allies couldn t be anything but triumphant so it s nice to see the real thoughts of the people Ritchie doesn t go so far as to elaborate on his feelings but you can detect undertones of alarm in his words.It was also interesting to see Ritchie interacting and working with famous historical figures like Mike Pearson and Vincent Massey This is where his biting wit really comes into play He described Mackenzie King as a fat, little conjurer with his flickering, shifty eyes and said Harry Truman looks like a sparrowy, little, old, small town, American housewife who could shut the door very firmly in the face of traveling salesmen and tramps The Bad I was really looking for of the big events of the war to be included in this diary In fact, it s one of the main reasons I decided to read the book We do get a good descriptions of the bombings and Ritchie evens manages to sneak into France during D Day Operations The problem is we only get hints of the aftermath, we only really see Allied camps and the country from the seat of a vehicle This is understandable as Ritchie wasn t a soldier but he doesn t even write about the end of the war Surely this event would have merited a mention.The Ugly I had some issues with Ritchie s opinion of Americans, despite the fact this is a personal diary All the same I feel that I never shall forgive the Americans for not being in this war I understand the frustration and anger at the American s isolationist policies but at times he goes too far The attack on Pearl Harbour has caused very human sardonic satisfaction to everyone I have happened to see today This will take the Americans by the scruff of the neck and bounce them into the war While this was the incident that brought America into the war, the fact that Ritchie was so callous about the incident was off putting Thousands of people lost their lives in that attack, a fact he seems to ignore.I also thought Ritchie s opinion of his girlfriends painted him to be something of a jerk She has sense and feeling than one would give her credit for at first What is shocking about her is the contrast between her romantic looks and her flat commonplace mind Like many completely uninhibited bores she wins in the end by sheer persistence The ballerina leaves today with the ballet company on tour I am looking forward to early and varied infidelities during her absence.


  3. says:

    volume two of Charles Ritchie s published diariesthis volume set in World War IIas well written as the first volume, as filled with anecdote, this volume has the added vividness of being written during a remarkable period in World History by a keen observer of Canada coming of age.


  4. says:

    This is a marvelous book.


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