The life of Siegfried Sassoon has been recorded and interpreted in literature and film for over half a century. He is one of the great figures of the First World War, and "Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man" and "Memoirs of an Infantry Officer" are still widely read, as are his poems, which did much to shape our present ideas about the Great War. Sassoon was a genuine hero, a brave young officer who also became the war's most famous opponent, risking imprisonment and even a death sentence by throwing his Military Cross into the Mersey. He was friend to Robert Graves, mentor to Wilfred Owen and much admired by Churchill. But Sassoon was more than the embodiment of a romantic ideal; he was in many senses the perfect product of a vanished age. And many questions about his character, unique experience and motivations have remained unanswered until now.
Max Egremont was born in 1948 and studied Modern History at Oxford University. As well as four novels, he is the author of two biographical studies, The Cousins, which won the Yorkshire Post First Book Award, and Balfour: A Life of James Arthur Balfour. Max Egremont lives in West Sussex with his wife and four children.