By Ford Madox Ford
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Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford ranked # 57 on The Modern Library's Top 100 Novels list as selected by its Board Members.
Parade's End is a tetralogy (four related novels) by Ford Madox Ford published between 1924 and 1928. It is set in England and on the Western Front in World War I, where Ford served as an officer in the Royal Welch Fusiliers, a life vividly depicted in the novels. The four novels were originally published under the titles: Some Do Not... (1924), No More Parades (1925), A Man Could Stand Up (1926), and Last Post (1928).
The novel chronicles the life its hero Christopher Tietjens, "the last Tory," a government-employed statistician from a wealthy land-owning family who is serving in the British Army during World War I.
Tietjens may or may not be the father of the child of his wife, Sylvia, who seems intent on ruining him. Meanwhile, Tietjens affair with Valentine Wannop, a high-spirited suffragette, has not been consummated, despite what all their friends believe. Much of the novel is spent with Tietjens in French trenches as he ruminates on how to be a better soldier and untangle his strange social life.
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