The book starts with his arrival at 'Slateford War Hospital' (based on Craiglockhart War Hospital). The famous neurologist W. H. R. Rivers is a major character in the book, having a profound influence on Sassoon in real life.
Sherston eventually returns to the army and is sent to Palestine and Ireland (where he is introduced to 'The Mister', an alcoholic, eccentric millionaire) and finally the Western Front in France. There he is shot in the head, survives and returns to recover in London, where he meets up with Rivers and sees the armistice celebrations.
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