Gallipoli: Our Last Man Standing by Jonathan King (John Wiley and Sons Australia, £18.99).

HERE'S another book about the First World War, this time from the rather neglected area of the Australian perspective.

Historian Jonathan King has certainly done sterling work as he traces the life and follows the fortunes of 16-year-old Outback boy Alec Campbell.

But this is not just another trawl through the Dardanelles fiasco and its sickening, futile loss of life.

For King illustrates how men and boys like Campbell would never be the same again after their experiences, the furnace of war forging a new Australia that would be destined to witness many changes.

In some ways, Campbell's baptism of five at Gallipoli was to prove to be only the start of a turbulent life, one in which trade unionism and Socialist politics would play a major role.

Alec Campbell's death at the age of 103 in May, 2002, meant that the last living link with Gallipoli was broken.

And that is why the testimony of survivors such as this remarkable man is so important - not just for historians and academics, but for Humanity as a whole.

John Phillpott