Hunger and its Relationship to War
"... munch on slabs of chocolate and stale biscuits. We have slept like logs through the evening meal-all except Tosh, who never misses a food-call on principle. It is her turn to make the Bovril. We gloatingly watch her light the little spirit lamp. We are hungry; but we are used to the hunger. We are always hungry in varying degrees-hungry, starving, or ravenous." (9-10)
Smith uses this passage in the very first pages to set the tone for the entire novel. Not only does she create a theme for her novel, but describes a theme of the entire war. The men on the fronts, as well as the women helping them are "always hungry." ...