Edith Cavell: Faith Before the Firing Squad

Thanks are due to the publishers, Monarch Books, who provided a pre-publicationcopy of this book for review via Netgalley.

I was really looking forward to reading this book – Edith Cavell has interested me as a woman playing an active part in the allied cause during World War 1 at a time when most women were expected to stay at home and support the cause from there. Some of the more adventurous went to be nurses, but we hear little about those who worked fearlessly in the face of real danger to help people escape. 
Catherine Butcher does indeed give an interesting account of the life of Edith Cavell, but, like some other reviewers, I found the repeated quotation of large passages of other publications to be quite disconcerting. The Book of Common Prayer, the Communion Service etc. are likely to be familiar with many readers, and possibly not that interesting to those who are not familiar with them. It really felt like this was ‘padding’ to make a short book longer, and this is a shame, because it’s a well written story of a fascinating woman. 
I enjoyed reading about Edith Cavell, and will seek out another biography of her, for more detail.


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