Monday, November 11, 2019

Review of Boots on the Ground: America's War in Vietnam by Elizabeth Partridge

Read for: Requested Review/ Veteran's Day

Synopsis: "In March 1965 President Lyndon B. Johnson sent troops into Vietnam. 57,939 American soldiers would be killed and seventeen years would pass before this controversial chapter of American history concluded with the dedication of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in 1982.

The history of this era is complex; the cultural impact extraordinary. But it's the personal stories of eight people--six American soldiers, one American nurse, and one Vietnamese refugee--that form the heartbeat of Boots on the Ground. From dense jungles and terrifying firefights to chaotic medic rescues and evacuations, each individual's story reveals a different facet of the war and moves readers forward in time. Alternating with these chapters are profiles of key American leaders and events, reminding readers what was happening at home, including Kent State, Woodstock, and Watergate."

My Review: I have had this book sitting on my TBR shelf for far too long. I believe this is marketed towards Middle Grade readers and while it can be a great resource for them, I don't know if younger readers of MG would be able to fully grasp the scope of this book (maybe older readers 12+). With that said this is a really great, honest look at the war in Vietnam. If I remember correctly, this war was really glazed over when I was in school, basically all that was said was it was a long war that we shouldn't have been involved in at all and that the soldiers were ridiculed when they returned. This book dives so much deeper and takes a real look at why we were there and how it continued for so long. We get to see a lot of the political influences and the disruption of checks and balances that allowed for so many lives to be lost. We also get to see the effects on those soldiers who were there and the toll it took on them and those closest to them, as well as the return to the US and the further suffering they went through upon returning home. I love how we also get how as time has gone on, how the nation has learned to support the soldiers, never enough but at least to honor them and come to some understanding of the long term effects war has on them.

My Rating: In honor of Veteran's Day, I wanted to post a book that brings further understanding to what the men and women who serve our country go through, and have suffered in the past. I hope that you are all able to take some time today to thank those who have served our country!  Back to this book though, I really appreciate how much research Partridge did to put this book together, pulling from stories from individuals and White House records. She gave us such an honest but disturbing look at the war in Vietnam.  I can honestly say that I won't be forgetting this book any time soon.  I give it a rating of Four Paws!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher.  The above is my honest opinion and review.

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