Married (1975), Vietnam-era (not in-country) vet (USN Retired), 4 sons, 11 grandkids, love riding my Harley.
Explains in detail the thought processes, human needs, and resultant feelings of survivor guilt. I really don't know what Marlantes' qualifications are to expound on these. Definitely NOT as good as his novel "Matterhorn".
This was a good book. It increased my compassion and empathy for our citizen soldiers. Vietnam and our current crop of wars leave scars that are with us forever.
Different approach but similar to "The Things They Carried" as both books write about the scars war leaves on our mind and soul - on our very existance.
I did not have a favorite, but I had compassion for each of them.
Wounds of war
Marlantes went through some painful times. I appreciate his sharing them with us.
I felt the pain and shame of war.
Facing the enemy eye to eye and someone must die. In a way we die or part of us dies.
Felt like he wrote the book - he was the authors voice.
Too many to single out.
I highly recommend reading this one.
PSavage MD CAPT USN retired
Thought provoking account of the Marine experience in Vietnam and psychological effects of war on young men.Found myself remembering memories and feelings I thought long forgotten.Sould be required reading for current military leaders and those thinking of joining the military.Content applies to all wars.
I loved his honesty, how Karl told the truth even though our socity does not accept the truth. It was very refreshing as he showed the truth underneath throughout the book
Canada, I think they can make a movie out of that guy. But it would be a sad ending
What a good solider goes through
I thank you the reader Bronson Pinchot who read the book like he wrote it. Because of the way he read the book, I thought he had written it. very well done. However, in all of Kar's truth and feeling put into the book, I believe Karl wasn't honest in one part of the story he told. I think he wrote what people wanted to hear and I was very disapointed.
Tell us about yourself!
The most enjoyable and informative book I have ever read
The author's skill at combining personal and acedemic views of experiences.
The Mass for the Dead
things we should all know for a better world.
The Viet Nam War was "my" war, I loved and love the boys/men who journeyed there. I have never understood them (or my father in WW2). I am so much closer to that now and have learned so much about humanity. The reader was perfect
I didn't like this book...I LOVED this book!!! So informative, and so from-the-heart! I have an even deeper respect for the Marines and ALL of our military personnel!!
I liked the honesty and candor with which the author wrote. It truly helped open my eyes.
Thought you knew what happened in 'Nam, get a REAL inside feel for it here!!
This book was certainly not what I was expecting and was a big disappointment. The story was slow and confusing at times.
This book was brilliant! Marlantes is one of the preeminent writers of war for our time. After reading Matterhorn, which I loved, I listened to this. There were times I had to stop and take a break because it is quite heavy. Marlantes writes about killing, maiming, death, grief, shame, guilt, courage, loyalty and heroism. He covers Jungian philosophy, Catholic and tribal traditions, Greek myth and classical history. He has killed, been responsible for his own men being killed and has the self-knowledge, education and command of language to express the different states and emotions he has experienced in the past forty years. He is a warrior and a Rhodes scholar, and his scholastic background helps him communicate the experiences that normally transcend words. Marlantes has put a lot of though into this subject for decades now and has chosen his words beautifully.
His brutal self-honesty was shocking, and too me, took more courage than running head on into a barrage of fire. He lays his soul bare for all of us too see so that our society can learn from the perpetual state of war we seem to find ourselves in generation after generation and so that our warriors can return intact physically as well as emotionally and spiritually.
I would listen again. I would recommend this book to those who have experienced combat and those who are about to become involved in combat. I don't pretend to understand what Vietnam veterans lime Marlantes went through. He provides insight with the benefit of coming to grips with his own demons from Vietnam. Marlantes sometimes wanders into a spiritual analysis of warfare that felt strangely foreign to me. His insights were always interesting even when I had trouble comprehending his intended impact on the reader. I was made well aware of the fact that he was a man who had been forever changed by war. With that in mind, I had no problem letting him run into strange views and interpretations about life in general. It is a good book, but do not go into it expecting a story you might hear sitting at the local VFW with a few cold brews extolling the glory of war.
I look forward to reading Marlates' book, Matterhorn. I would definitely encourage those who are dealing with their own war demons. I think some of his views are dead on, while I can only raise eye brows at others. Again, I have not reservations about letting him go on with his thoughts. He has been there and he deserves his right to talk about it from his point of view. Some of his fellow veterans might disagree with him, and they have earned that right as well. I feel that Marlantes has a deep love for his country, the Corps, and those men and women who are called upon to engage in "policy by other means.
I was especially touched by some of his descriptions of actual combat experiences and his responsibility to make life and death decisions for his men.
I was greatly moved by his discussion of moral obstacles he faced in going to war. The Vietnam war forced men who were too young to make conscious decisions that would have been challenging for even the wisest among us. The fact that Marlantes seems to be still on a journey of resolving these issues forty years later helped me get a better grasp of just how much combat experiences steeps into ones marrow, and becomes one with the mind and Psyche.
I found his discussion of religious issues strange (not necessarily in a bad way). He is a great story teller; however, there were points in his story where I simply had to dismiss what he was saying and conclude that I have reference point to understand nor jude the validity of his statements. I felt Bronson Pinchot did an excellent job of narrating the story. If you are easily offended by the "f" word, you may want to steer clear. Marlantes was a Marine, and the language sometimes brought back my own flashbacks of being with the Marines at Camp LeJeune. I gave the story a modest three due to the fact that he sometimes went on rants, and at other times the overall story was disjointed, however, I did find the book worthwhile, and I will likely revisit parts of it again as I do more research on the war in Vietnam.