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An Accidental Soldier

In times of war, love can be found in the most unlikely of places.

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In times of war, love can be found in the most unlikely of places.

During World War I, Harry Lambert, a shy and gentle baker from rural Victoria, finds himself fighting for his life on the Western Front in Europe. Watching his mates die around him, Harry can’t bear the thought of dying before ever having truly known love. Making a life-changing decision, he walks away from the battlefield into an unfamiliar and hostile French countryside. Desperately trying to avoid capture, he meets Colombe, a stoic farm-wife bowed by hard work and tragedy, who risks everything to save his life.

John Charalambous, author of An Accidental Soldier, Two Greeks, Furies, and Silent Parts

John Charalambous

John Charalambous was born and educated in Melbourne. He grew up in a culturally mixed family - Greek Cypriot on his father’s side, Anglo-Australian on his mother’s. Following an interest in painting, he obtained a teaching degree in fine arts from Melbourne State College. While teaching art in secondary schools he began to write fiction, at the same time studying literature and creative writing at Melbourne University. After spending time in Cyprus and Greece, he took up a teaching appointment in the central Victorian town of Wedderburn, where he remained for thirteen years, no longer as a teacher but running a small business. This experience of rural life became the basis for his first novel Furies, UQP, 2004, which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize Best First Book (South East Asia and South Pacific region).
His second novel Silent Parts, UQP, 2006, explores a family’s private myths about a WW1 soldier who didn’t come home. Silent Parts was long-listed for the Miles Franklin Award in 2007. John now lives in Bendigo, Victoria, where he is completing an English Honours year at La Trobe University. His third novel Two Greeks will be published in August 2011.