Born on the Fourth of July

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Overview

“A great, courageous fellow, a man of deep moral convictions and an uncompromising disposition.”—John Kerry on Ron Kovic

“As relevant as ever, this book is an education. Ron is a true American, and his great heart and hard-won wisdom shine through these pages.” —Oliver Stone, filmmaker

Born on the Fourth of July brings back the era of the Vietnam War at a time when the Establishment is trying to make the nation forget what they call the “Vietnam syndrome.” Ron Kovic’s memoir is written with poetic passion and ...

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Born on the Fourth of July

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Overview

“A great, courageous fellow, a man of deep moral convictions and an uncompromising disposition.”—John Kerry on Ron Kovic

“As relevant as ever, this book is an education. Ron is a true American, and his great heart and hard-won wisdom shine through these pages.” —Oliver Stone, filmmaker

Born on the Fourth of July brings back the era of the Vietnam War at a time when the Establishment is trying to make the nation forget what they call the “Vietnam syndrome.” Ron Kovic’s memoir is written with poetic passion and grips your attention from the very first page to the last. It is a classic of antiwar literature and I hope it will be read by large numbers of young people, who will be both sobered and inspired by his story. —Howard Zinn

“If you want to understand the everlasting reverberations of our war in Vietnam and how it impacts our current events, you must read this book.” —LARRY HEINEMANN

“There is no book more relevant in the 21st century to healing the wound of Vietnam, which continues to bring so much pain to our country, as reflected in the last presidential election . . . It remains to Kovic to remind us that history matters, and that the cost of our high follies persists.” —ROBERT SCHEER, Los Angeles Times columnist

This New York Times bestseller (more than one million copies sold) details the author's life story (portrayed by Tom Cruise in the Oliver Stone film version)--from a patriotic soldier in Vietnam, to his severe battlefield injury, to his role as the country's most outspoken anti-Vietnam War advocate, spreading his message from his wheelchair.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Now a benchmark of anti-Vietnam War literature, Kovic's best seller debuted in 1976. In a new introduction, Kovic draws parallels to the Iraq war. As powerful as ever. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780671681494
  • Publisher: Pocket Books
  • Publication date: 11/15/1989
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 224

Meet the Author


Ron Kovic served two tours of duty during the Vietnam War. He was paralyzed from his chest down in combat in 1968 and has been in a wheelchair ever since. Along with Oliver Stone, Kovic was the co-screenwriter of the 1989 Academy Award-winning film based on the book (Tom Cruise plays the role of Kovic).
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 10 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(3)

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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2014

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book for a p

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book for a project.  
    This book changed my views. Knowing a Veteran I never understood why the Veteran I know never liked to talk about the war he was in,
    and after reading this book, I understand. The way Kovic talks about his experiences throughout his life; before, during, and after the war,
    is so amazing, it's like you're there experiencing these things with him. I liked the way everything in the book was paced, like how he talks 
    about his life right after the war rather than during or before the war. You can tell how passionate he is about the war just by reading
     through a chapter or two. While reading it I was in awe about how well written Born on the Fourth of July was. It's amazing to see what 
    stories one man can tell. And I absolutely loved the way he talks about his childhood in this book, it truly is like you're there. Although
    I loved the way he talked about his childhood and  life after the war, I wish he would've talked more about the war itself. I was also
     confused also about some of the events taking place because in the book he would go from story to story in different tenses and in points
     of view. Other than that, the book was great. Overall I'd give this book a B+/ A- 
     

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2014

    I am a high school sophomore and I chose to read this chose to r

    I am a high school sophomore and I chose to read this chose to read this book for my research project.Born on the Fourth of July is a




    very influential book. Ron Kovic is very patriotic person and he sticks up for what he believes in. This book shows the point of view of what it would be like to be a Vietnam Veteran. It made me realize that many veterans were treated badly when they came back from the war. Ron Kovic had us experience what his life was before, during, and after the war. This book makes you feel like you are with him through his lifetime. He describes how he felt about the war and how it was like being paralyzed. You experience his life from when he was a kid to when he stood up for himself and other veterans at President Nixon’s acceptance speech. Kovic always has been a patriotic American; he loved his country and was willing to die for it too. Born on The fourth of July was entertaining, a fast read and very descriptive. It feels like you are experiencing his life.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2011

    Life Changing

    With out a doubt this was the best book I have ever read. I read it three times over starting when I was in High school. Ron kovics story turned me off from enlisting in the service and seeking a life of peace instead. This book changed my life forever and reshaped my views on how I see life, my government and how I live from day to day. Ron Kovic is truly a honest hero who made a horrible sacrafice that has changed the world for the better.

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  • Posted February 21, 2010

    A terrific, true tale that need's to be told over and over and will never grow outdated.

    An interesting read. A scary look at a position we put ourselves in, a (should be) lesson in the future. Thought provoking story of the times, the shameful times. Inspired me to wonder, "what makes us think like we do."
    As a veteran, I support the writing and enjoyed the book immensely. As a person that enjoys reading a good story I also support the writing....and salute the author.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2009

    I LOVE to read, and I HATED this

    I was forced to read this book for school, and it was one of the worst experiences of my life. Typically the reading material in school, while sometime boring, is always an example of good literature: well written with realistic dialogue, evolving characters, and sufficient symbolism and metaphor to have an essay writing field day. This book however, was not an example of good literature, or even a good story. The fact of the matter is, you could have the greatest story in the world, but if it¿s not written well, then it¿s not good literature. <BR/> And frankly this is not the greatest story in the world; it¿s not even that unique. A boy is really enthusiastic about the war, and comes home paralyzed; it happened to a lot of people. Which is not to say I don¿t feel for the guy, without a doubt his situation sucks. But that does not mean that he should vent all his rage, frustration and pent up feelings in a 200 page novel. If you want to expose the horror of war, or the mistreatment of veterans, feel free, but that is not what this novel is, this is some type of psychiatric stress reliever filled with both crude imagery and language, chiefly concerned with his inability to screw a woman. If you need catharsis, fine, write it down in a diary and stick it under your mattress, don¿t send it to a publisher and force me to read it. <BR/> In the end, this is an uncreative story written by a bitter man, who felt the need to inflict his suffering on readers everywhere with more than two hundred pages of angry drivel. If you want good war novels, try Slaughterhouse Five or The Things They Carried.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2007

    Important Read

    I could not stop reading this book, once I started it. Kovic's memoir is a must read for every American and Marine. I learned so much from such a small book! Thank you Mr. Kovic for your honest opinions about a terrible time in American history.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2003

    unbelievable

    i was shocked reading this book because it left me anticipating to turn the page. It takes you on a first-hand journey of Kovic's life's aftermath of the Vietnam war as he is left paralyzed. It is absolutely breathtaking and deep to see the change and the feelings he expresses that it almost makes you feel like you're part of it

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2003

    good book to read

    I read the book, and I thought it was great.The book tells you about Ron Kovik, a young man who was very athletic and decided to join the army to get an early career. He found out that war is hell and he had become paralyzed from waist down. There would be a lot of young athletes and war veterans that would love to read this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2001

    Kovic's powerful autobiography

    BOTFOJ tells all about the hell of war. This book is the personal tale of it's author Ron Kovic, that shows his dramatic transfer or coming of age if you will... He makes a complete 180 beginning the story as a Hawk and ending up a Dove. He is the typical all american boy, and loves his country, but all that changes in Vietnam. When he is wounded almost fatally, he becomes a parapalegic, and gets neglected in the veteran's hospitals in Vietnam. This is when the metamorphisis occurs. This is a must read for anyone studying the Vietnam war as a valuable first hand account. Some parallels can also be drawn between Kovic and Lieutenant Dan from Forrest Gump.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2000

    Great book

    This book was the best book that I have ever read and I will never forgit it

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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