Colonel Kopelman doesn't make it easy to follow his story. Like a butterfly in a flower field, he flits around, lighting on many places and times in his life without lingering. His memories of fighting in Iraq are mixed with descriptions of the stress of returning to U.S. society and of his love for Lava, a dog he smuggled back with him. Narrator Christopher Lane does nothing to distinguish the randomly placed letters to the author regarding his previous volume - From Baghdad with Love - making it difficult to tell where they begin and end. He does, however, portray to perfection an ex-Marine whose writing admits to anger, hostility, and personality damage resulting from his combat experiences. Lane creates a veteran characterized by chaotic thinking and disturbing unrest.
Kopelman now writes about what it's like to be home. He credits his canine best friend with finding his wife---in the park, Lava began playing with her dog and the two owners met---and for keeping him sane as he readjusted. With the same intelligence and insight he showed in From Baghdad, With Love, Kopelman sets forth more than a dozen lessons, including: Life can change in an instant, but you'll be able to handle it; passion for something can help you tap into your most powerful reserve of energy; have a standard operating procedure for everything; and never forget who you are or how you got here. Active and retired troops, soldiers' friends and families, and everyone who has ever loved a dog will embrace this book.
Would you listen to From Baghdad to America again? Why?
I would defo listen again. This was a great followup to From Baghdad with love as well it explored the topics on PTSD and TBI which are usually not spoken about with in the context of men and women serving in the forces. Working myself in the Mental Health field this was a wonderful admittance of the realities faced by returning Force memebers. I enjoyed this and Kopelman is hilarious!
Who was your favorite character and why?
Of course Kopelman. He is a ruff rugged Marine who finaly admits he needs help.
What does Christopher Lane bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
You can just imagine exactly what is going on as he reads it, the voices, the intonation was all just perfect!
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Yes but I listed to it in fouir... Two days in a row on the way to and from work!
Any additional comments?
Loved it and you should read it too.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
I really enjoyed the earlier book, about the travails of bringing the treasured dog to the US from Iraq, but this one is too much of a self-help book and, from this standpoint, not very original. It's really life lessons after Lava, not from Lava.I can understand why Mr. Kopelman would want to write a follow-up memoir about what happened to him upon returning to the US, but as much as I got through, I didn't see any real link to Lava, which was what interested me.
Not knowing much about the military and the war, I learned a tremendous amount from this book. The story is inspiring and will hopefully help others who have been through similar situations. Plus, I love dogs!
I read the book when it first came out, so was glad to see it in audio so I could listen to it. I still love the story. I know the Weider holds and Dennis Wood, so the book has special meaning for me. My only criticism is for the narrator. He has a good reading voice as far as enunciation; however, it is very monotone. At passages where there should be emotion or inflection, it was flat. Put some feeling into the narration.