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Brothers Far from Home: The World War I Diary of Eliza Bates is the eighth book in the Dear Canada series by Scholastic Canada. It was published in August 2003. The book is Jean Little's second in the series after Orphan at My Door. It was followed by An Ocean Apart by Gillian Chan. The book was also translated into French in February 2006.


"In memory of my uncle Lieutenant Gordon Smith Mellis Gauld M.C., who was killed when his plane crashed in March, 1918. He was twenty-five and he called my mother "Monkeyshines."
For my cousin Ailsa Margaret Little, who remembers Eliza's war and shares her memories with me.

Book description[]

"Sunday, January 7, 1916
War is confusing. One minute you are excited. The flags are flying and the march music makes you stride out. You can feel your eyes sparkle and your arms swing to the thumping of the drums or the drone of the bagpipes (Father says the right word is "skirl" but I am not so sure and this is
my journal.) Then you hear about the wounded men and you see the lists of missing and dead. I cannot understand how it can all be part of the same thing. Why were Hugo and Jack in such a hurry to go, as if it were all a huge adventure, when it might end so terribly? Is it the flags flying and the band music and the uniforms? God could not let anything terrible happen to Hugo or Jack or Rufus."

"Le 7 janvier 1917
C'est bizarre, la guerre. D'abord, c'est excitant, avec les drapeaux qui flottent au vent et les marches militaires qui vous donnent plein d'entrain. Vos yeux se mettent à pétiller, et vos bras, à se balancer au rythme des tambours ou au ronronnement des cornemuses. (Papa dit que les cornemuses ne ronronnent pas, mais qu'elles bourdonnent. Je n'en suis pas absolument sûre, et d'ailleurs, ceci est mon journal.) Mais l'instant d'après, vous entendez parler des blessés ou vous avez sous le nez la liste des morts et des portés disparus. Je n'arrive pas à comprendre que la guerre puisse être tout ça. Pourquoi Hugo et Jack étaient-ils si pressés de partir, comme s'il s'agissait d'une formidable aventure, alors que ça pourrait se terminer très mal pour eux? Est-ce que c'est à cause des drapeaux et de la fanfare et des uniformes? Dieu ne permettra jamais qu'il arrive malheur à Hugo, à Jack ou à Rufus. Jamais!



Historical Note[]


Main article: List of Brothers Far from Home characters


Main article: Jean Little




"The author thanks, first and foremost, her editor, Sandy Bogart Johnston, whose research and inspired editing were of enormous help in shaping Eliza's story. Reference librarians at the Guelph Public Library were always patient and wonderful at answering questions and locating song lyrics. The author's thank s go to Laurel Marsolais, Cathy Taylor, Mary Ramatar and Nancy Clarke. Thanks also to Claire Mackay, who helped with information and moral support.
Thanks to Barbara Hehner for her careful checking of the manuscript; to Allan McGillivray, curator of the Uxbridge-Scott Museum; and to Dr. Desmond Morton, historian and author of such books
Marching to Armageddon, for sharing his vast expertise so willing."


  • The portrait on the cover is a detail from a 1904 photograph produced by Waldren Studios, depicting a girl referred to as the daughter of a Mrs. McLean. The background is a detail from a 1918 photograph depicting the 28th Battalion.[7][8][9]


See also[]

Dear Canada

Orphan at My Door | A Prairie as Wide as the Sea | With Nothing But Our Courage | Footsteps in the Snow
A Ribbon of Shining Steel | Whispers of War | Alone in an Untamed Land | Brothers Far from Home | An Ocean Apart
A Trail of Broken Dreams | Banished from Our Home | Winter of Peril | Turned Away | The Death of My Country
No Safe Harbour | A Rebel's Daughter | A Season for Miracles | If I Die Before I Wake | Not a Nickel to Spare
Prisoners in the Promised Land | Days of Toil and Tears | Where the River Takes Me | Blood Upon Our Land
A Desperate Road to Freedom | A Christmas to Remember | Exiles from the War | To Stand On My Own
Hoping for Home | That Fatal Night | Torn Apart | A Sea of Sorrows | Pieces of the Past | A Country of Our Own
All Fall Down | Flame and Ashes | A Time for Giving | These Are My Words

External links[]