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Smoky Joe's Cafe | [Bryce Courtenay]

Smoky Joe's Cafe

Thommo returns from Vietnam to an Australia that regards him as a mercenary guilty of war crimes. He begins to develop all kinds of physical and mental problems, and thinks it must only be him until he finds he is not alone. Ten mates, all who remain of his platoon who fought and died in the Battle of Long Tan, are affected the same way.
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Publisher's Summary

Thommo returns from Vietnam to an Australia that regards him as a mercenary guilty of war crimes. He begins to develop all kinds of physical and mental problems, and thinks it must only be him until he finds he is not alone. Ten mates, all who remain of his platoon who fought and died in the Battle of Long Tan, are affected the same way.

Now Thommo and his mates are 11 angry men out for revenge. They rope in an ex-Viet Cong with 'special skills' and his own secret agenda. They're the 'Dirty Dozen', just like the movie. Only it's real life, and they're so screwed up they couldn't fight their way out of a wet paper bag. That is, until a woman of character steps in. Wendy's infant daughter is dying and needs a bone-marrow transplant. Hell hath no fury, as she sets out to mould this bunch of ex-jungle fighters into a unit that will fight for justice, by fair means or foul.

©2001 Bruce Courtenay; (P)2001 Bolinda Publishing Pyt Ltd by arrangement with Penguin Group (Australia)

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    Kathleen Minneapolis, MN, USA 10-01-12
    Kathleen Minneapolis, MN, USA 10-01-12 Member Since 2015
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    "Australian Vietnam vet with Agent Orange"

    book is set, I believe in the 1980’s. The vet is suffering from Agent Orange exposure, but it is before either the U.S. or Australia are admitting that Agent Orange is the cause of so much damage. So in this book, a group of Vietnam vets who served together decide to grow hashish and sell it in has honey to earn enough to help vets who have been harmed and who aren’t getting help from the government. It’s totally illegal, but they have this enterprise for a year, raise a lot of money and help a lot of people. It’s a very interesting book with the vet and his wife coming back together after having almost been separated by the events of the war because he can’t talk about them. Also, some interesting contrasts between experiences of Australian Vietnam vets and American Vietnam vets.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marcus 12-19-09
    Marcus 12-19-09 Member Since 2015
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    "Unworthy"

    This book is totally unworthy of Bryce - of whom I am a great fan.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nikkola The Rock, Australia 05-01-07
    Nikkola The Rock, Australia 05-01-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    22
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    "Excellent"

    Bryce has lived up to all expectations. Loved this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sunny 07-12-15
    Sunny 07-12-15 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
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    Story
    "Short but still good"

    Can get enough of this author, I set out to listen to all of them.
    This was one of theist I had left, it is good, but too short to be as good as his others.
    Still worth a listen!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Reich Northern, CA 01-11-10
    Chris Reich Northern, CA 01-11-10 Member Since 2009

    Business Physicist and Astronomer

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    "Weakest of the Bryce Courtenay I've Read"

    It's an entertaining story but very contrived and borders on trite. This is pap compared to the maser work of Tandia.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jordan CHEVY CHASE, MD, United States 11-27-05
    Jordan CHEVY CHASE, MD, United States 11-27-05 Member Since 2012
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    "A GUT WRENCHER"

    THIS IS A WELL TOLD, HEARTWARMING STORY. I'M TEMPTED TO READ OTHER BOOKS BY THIS AUTHOR WHEN I HAVE TIME

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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