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For Luis Carlos Montalvan, Until Tuesday is the story of how a service dog led him through the darkest days following his return from service in the United States Army in Iraq. For the listener, his narration of Until Tuesday offers the rare experience of hearing a soldier discuss his journey of coming home from war. To hear Montalvan narrate his own story of transition from constant emotional and physical pain to successfully integrating back into his “normal” life at home is riveting and unforgettable.
Montalvan is a returning veteran whose homecoming and assimilation back into society has proven to be one of the greatest struggles of his life. After years of daily experience with horrifying combat, a mere trip to the grocery store seems like an insurmountable task. Enter Tuesday a service dog trained to help veterans and the disabled put the pieces of their lives back together. Like Montalvan, Tuesday’s unethical training and serial abandonment suggest that he was treated as a soldier, too. Montalvan and Tuesday, wounded veteran and “broken” service dog, together find a way to bring each other back to life, to cope with the significant psychological damage that comes with post-traumatic stress. Montalvan’s erudite storytelling offers a deep exploration of what service dogs do for the disabled and of what it’s like for a soldier to come home from the war in Iraq. The profound impact of this service dog pervades the narration; Montalvan’s tone demonstrates his unwavering gratitude to Tuesday.
While Until Tuesday tells the story of a soldier’s experiences in Iraq, Montalvan does so without straying into too many political tangents. However, he does make clear his advocacy for veterans and disabled people, making a case for government-funded support for returning veterans and those who suffer from PTSD. Until Tuesday is an absorbing, accessible story of a war veteran’s struggles upon returning home and the therapeutic benefits of companionship from man’s best friend. Suzanne Day
"We aren't just service dog and master; Tuesday and I are also best friends. Kindred souls. Brothers. Whatever you want to call it. We weren't made for each other, but we turned out to be exactly what the other needed."
A highly decorated captain in the U.S. Army, Luis Montalvan never backed down from a challenge during his two tours of duty in Iraq. After returning home from combat, however, the pressures of his physical wounds, traumatic brain injury, and crippling post-traumatic stress disorder began to take their toll. Haunted by the war and in constant physical pain, he soon found himself unable to climb a simple flight of stairs or face a bus ride to the VA hospital. He drank; he argued; ultimately, he cut himself off from those he loved. Alienated and alone, unable to sleep or bend over without pain, he began to wonder if he would ever recover.
Then Luis met Tuesday, a beautiful and sensitive golden retriever trained to assist the disabled. Tuesday had lived amongst prisoners and at a home for troubled boys, blessing many lives; he could turn on lights, open doors, and sense the onset of anxiety and flashbacks. But because of a unique training situation and sensitive nature, he found it difficult to trust in or connect with a human being until Luis.
Until Tuesday is the story of how two wounded warriors, who had given so much and suffered the consequences, found salvation in each other. It is a story about war and peace, injury and recovery, psychological wounds and spiritual restoration. But more than that, it is a story about the love between a man and dog, and how together they healed each other's souls.
I loved this book. I do not agree at all with the few reviews who felt it was selfish and political. It is no secret that wounded vets have had a problem getting the type of treatment they need and the benefits they deserve. This has been happening since Vietnam. And PTSD is the most difficult to treat. Very few escape the PTSD at one level or another. After reading the book, I was totally disappointed in those who gave bad reviews. The book is about a very personal experience of one of our men in the military. There are hundreds of thousands dealing with many of the same issues from Iraq and Afghanistan. These wars seem to go on forever and they are taking a huge toll, particularly mentally. I hope that Luis writes another book about his continued progress and his life with Tuesday. I will read it and appreciate all of it. Very special book. Well written and I'm also very glad that Luis narrated the book himself. That made it even more personal. I will read this again one day and hope there is another to follow.
40 of 40 people found this review helpful
Much more than a dog story. Mr Montalvan takes us into Iraq for an inside look of the hardships our military personel and the Iraqis suffer every day.Tuesday endured his trials too and together they made this unforgettable story. If your'e not a dog person you should be after this.
36 of 37 people found this review helpful
I was very moved by this book. It made me aware of the difficulties our soliders go through on their return home. I have recommended this book to all my friends. Everyone needs a Tuesday in their life.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
Let me preface this by warning you that I am a dog lover.
This story is mostly about PTSD, then about service dogs and then about discrimination and finally politics.
I learned a lot about PTSD and I think the education will help me in the future. I learned a lot about service dogs and believe they are a must, especially for Vets. I was not aware of the discrimination, but recognize it after reading about it. I probably was a little guilty myself. I am not an Al Franken fan and am semi-warm on Obama, but this helped me see that these are people who can help and who are trying to help. I heard on the news lately that congress is going to quit providing Vets with service dogs and believe that is a slap in the face to men who have risked there lives for our freedom. I know we need to make cuts, but if we have to cut benefits to Vets, we can no longer be proud to be Americans.
LM does a great job narrating.
The book was pretty good most of the way, but toward the end he started repeating himself and it felt like he was just trying to lengthen the book.
11 of 11 people found this review helpful
Tuesday and Capt. Montalvan's story, hit home in so many ways. My P.T.S.D hidden and controlled for many years after returning from two tours of duty in Vietnam, surfaced into full blown nightmares after open heart surgery later in life. I learned from the heart surgeon afterwards, it is something that happens quite often to veterans after undergoing such an event.
Capt. Montalvan's journey to function in society, with the help of his dog Tuesday confirmed my belief that you must be "All IN" in the relationship between dog and person. Those events in Tuesday's life of bonding himself to his handler's during training, only to loose that connection at some point, underscores the issue that dog's are fully aware emotionally who is committed 100% to a relationship. I too have a service dog for my PTSD, and I cannot imagine my life without him. I am "all in," and so is he. Thank you Captain for explaining so well that bond and relationship, and the importance of service dogs to veterans that suffer from the trauma of war for the rest of their lives. Most of all thank you for your service to our nation, and for the issues concerning veterans you so gallantly and intelligently speak about and support. I salute you!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
Where does Until Tuesday rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
Until Tuesday was a great book to listen to. As well as being a heart warming story about a service dog, it is also an eye opener to several problems our vets, and the handicap, face. I learned that there is much more to training and having a service dog than I had thought, but there is also a tremendous amount of joy. Tuesday is a fantastic dog!
What did you like best about this story?
One of the things I enjoyed best about hearing the story was having the author reading the book himself. Montalvan gives a great performance, and shows emotion in his narration of the book.
What does Luis Carlos Montalvan bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
By listening to the author read the book you get a true feeling of the frustration, anger and sorrow Luis experienced. Luis writes a very honest story and gives just as honest a performance when narrating the book.
Any additional comments?
It's a shame that our veterans, from any war, must be put through so much red tape to acquire the services needed. Hopefully one day that will change. Thank you to people like Luis Montalvan that are trying to make a difference.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
This is a moving memoir about overcoming obstacles, finding love and finding a way to heal. This honest look at one veteran's life imparted a message that I will never forget. As an active duty Army officer myself, I salute my fellow brother in arms for having the courage to tell this story. I think it is fair to say that through his own story, Luis Carlos Montalvan speaks on behalf of so many others who haven't found their own voice yet. People can survive PTSD...it takes a lot of love and support! What can I say about this memoir's hero...Tuesday is truly a ROCK STAR!
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
I loved this book. Tuesday & Luis were just suited for each other. You will remember this story for a long time.
8 of 9 people found this review helpful
Montalvan has written a captivating book that keeps me coming back for more. I wish every federal government official who is involved with deploying troops to Afghanistan and Iraq could read this. They need to understand what is happening to the men and women who are involved in the fighting!
Excellent book! Very enjoyable listening!
12 of 14 people found this review helpful
What made the experience of listening to Until Tuesday the most enjoyable?
Knowing that it is true. This could be happening close to our home, so be patient with those who so quickly come into, then leave our lives.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful