One of the rawest, most poignant and sometimes heartbreaking commentaries on the war that I have ever seen. The human cost of the war in Afghanistan has not been forgotten, but it would be hard to think of a more forceful way of highlighting it" Adrian Weale, Literary Review, May 2015. Also described in the international press as "groundbreaking" and "staggering" Diary Rooms records the innermost feelings and emotions of those on the front line in Afghanistan. Author Derek Eland spent a month on the front line in Helmand, Afghanistan, in 2011 where he set up three Big Brother style 'Diary Rooms' and asked everyone he met to write their story on a postcard. Over the course of a month hundreds of postcards were collected from British and Irish soldiers, Afghan soldiers and civilians and other Western troops including from the USA and Denmark. This book is a collection of these emotional and heart rendering postcards and stories together with photographs the author took whilst in Afghanistan. Everyday life on the front line is recorded, from the mundane to the brutal, courageous to the caring. Above all these handwritten accounts have an honesty which is rarely found. One soldier writes that there are 'two wars' bring fought: one involving the bombs and the bullets and the one 'which goes on in a soldier's head when the fighting stops'. The book has been supported by Arts Council England and proceeds from the sale will go to the Veterans' mental health charity Combat Stress.
Diary Rooms - Being Human on the Front Line in Afghanistan book
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