“Patrick Dennis’ contribution is a myth-busting volume…Dennis provides a corrective, proving that draftees were a significant stream of reinforcements during periods when casualty rates kept Canadian units chronically understrength. Without the availability of conscripted soliders to fill the gaps in the ranks, the Canadian Corps could not have achieved its impressive victories in 1918.” Will Pratt, Prairie History: Number 2, Summer 2020.
“This is an important book…it is hard to imagine any book on Canadian land operations in the First World War not including Reluctant Warriors in its bibliography. Furthermore, it is just as difficult to imagine any teacher or academic not rushing to his or her lecture notes to change significant aspects of what is going to be taught hereafter.” Terry Loveridge, Royal Military College of Canada, Canadian Military Journal, Vol 18, No. 3
“Patrick M. Dennis’s Reluctant Warriors, another compelling entry in the UBC Press/Canadian War Museum Studies in Canadian Military History series, is a topical and long overdue examination of a fascinating chapter of Canada’s Great War experience … The work has immense emotional resonance, a welcome change from the detachment so common to operational history, buttressed by the author’s personal connection to the story … Reluctant Warriors is … a cri de coeurthat demolishes old assumptions about conscripts in combat and provides an important contribution to the larger question of what Canada gained – and lost – in the First World War.”
“Diligently researched and engagingly written, Dennis’s book adds significantly to our understanding of Canada and the First World War – in particular, the experiences of tens of thousands of men who served their country less than willingly during the conflict and the vital contributions they made to the great victories of the Canadian Corps in France and Belgium from August to November, 1918.”
“Conscription represented one of the most difficult problems Canada faced during the First World War. Consequently, the place of more than 100,000 conscripts in our memory of the conflict has always been unsettled. Patrick Dennis has done a great service by finally telling the story of Canada’s involuntary soldiers of the Great War, the conscripted thousands who arrived on the Western Front during the final, terrible months of 1918.”
“With his fine research and careful analysis, Patrick Dennis has corrected the story that I and others told for so long. Some conscripts may have been shirkers – so were some volunteers – but most did their duty in a succession of great and terrible battles that broke the German Army.”