In the Line of Fire, by Rex Sadler and Tom Hayllar

In the years since Federation, a large element of Australia’s national identity has been forged by our role in international conflicts. In In the Line of Fire, authors Rex Sadler and Tom Hayllar explore this role. What sets this book apart from other such books is that much of the talking is done by the very men (and women) who fought in these conflicts.

Focussing on on the two world wars, Korea and Vietnam, the book details the important events of each conflict and then shares stories from these conflicts. These stories include first-hand accounts – recollections, biographies, letters home and extracts from other book-length accounts. There are also more than 60 photographs included to add visual weight to the words.

As well as focussing on different campaigns – including Gallipoli, the Kokokoda Trail and Tobruk – there are also chapters devoted to the role of women, war photographers, and Victoria Cross recipients.

The use of first-hand accounts makes this a highly personalised, very real offering, providing personal insights into the hardships of war.

In the line of Fire, by Rex Sadler and Tom Hayllar
Macmillan, 2005