'There is a whistling sound behind us. Shells pass overhead and explode in a sheet of flame a hundred meters away.' When Paul Baumer and his classmates join the army, nothing has prepared them for the death and destruction that they witness. Machine guns, huge artillery shells and poison gas create a nightmare world for these young men and their older comrades. For months and years attack is followed by counter-attack. Will any of Paul's friends survive long enough to return to their families and loved ones? Will there be a place for them at home, when peace finally comes? Can any of these soldiers make sense of the massive conflict in which they are involved? Real Reads are accessible texts designed to support the literacy development of primary and lower secondary age children while introducing them to the riches of our international literary heritage. Each book is a retelling of a work of great literature from one of the world's greatest cultures, fitted into a 64-page book, making classic stories, dramas and histories available to intelligent young readers as a bridge to the full texts, to language students wanting access to other cultures, and to adult readers who are unlikely ever to read the original versions.