Bringing Mulligan Home: The Other Side of the Good War

( 2 )

Overview


Sergeant Steve Maharidge returned from World War II an angry man. For a long time, the only evidence that remained of his service in the Marines was a photograph of himself and a buddy that he tacked to the basement wall. When his son, Dale Maharidge, set out to discover what happened to the friend in the photograph, he found that wars do not end when the guns go quiet. The scars and demons remain for decades. Bringing Mulligan Home is a story...
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Bringing Mulligan Home: The Other Side of the Good War

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Overview


Sergeant Steve Maharidge returned from World War II an angry man. For a long time, the only evidence that remained of his service in the Marines was a photograph of himself and a buddy that he tacked to the basement wall. When his son, Dale Maharidge, set out to discover what happened to the friend in the photograph, he found that wars do not end when the guns go quiet. The scars and demons remain for decades. Bringing Mulligan Home is a story of fathers and sons, war, and what was, for some, a long postwar.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Helen Benedict, author of The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq and Sand Queen
“Through deep and sensitive interviewing, Dale Maharidge has achieved what many have previously thought impossible: he has opened up the "silent generation" of World War Two veterans and enabled them to tell their stories. These veterans, US marines and Japanese who met as enemies in the Pacific, are no mythologized heroes or villains, but flesh-and-blood humans describing the true horror that has always been, and always will be, war. Maharidge enables these survivors to speak of the war with such honesty that they strip away all its glamour, break your heart and win it all at once. Part memoir, part vivid history, part a searing examination of war trauma, Bringing Mulligan Home gives us an entirely fresh look at "The Good War" that may well change our view of it forever.”

Kirkus
“A moving memoir. . .A powerful narrative of the dark side of American combat in the Pacific theater and the persistence of resulting injuries decades after the war ended.”

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Rhodes
“Gripping and unforgettable—a son’s search for his father in the shattered ruins of the Pacific War”

New York Post
“A scrupulous and heartfelt analysis of what it was like to be “a cog in the biggest battle in the Pacific.”

Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Mulligan is that rare thing: a book propelled into being by heartfelt urgency and prodigious skill, a mission truly accomplished.”

Wall Street Journal
Bringing Mulligan Home offers bracing eyewitness and some fine writing.”

Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Unexpectedly uplifting”

Huntington News

“A wonderful story. The author brings to the art of non-fiction the rhythm and suspense of a tall tale. Masterfully written.”

Sea Classics Magazine
“Wrenching, powerful….This is a reflective work that will prove of great interest to all war veterans, their families, and others interested in them.”

BookPage
“Excellently performed by Pete Larkin.”
BookPage
Library Bookwatch
“Portrays not only the battles of war, but the lasting impact they had on the lives of those who served, and the dark memories they would have to carry for the rest of their lives. Highly recommended.”
Library Bookwatch
Minneapolis Star Tribune
“Mulligan is that rare thing: a book propelled into being by heartfelt urgency and prodigious skill, a mission truly accomplished.”
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Kirkus Reviews
The story of a distinguished journalist's search for his father's war. Pulitzer Prize winner Maharidge's (Journalism/Columbia Univ.; Homeland, 2011, etc.) father was a Marine sergeant who fought on Okinawa, where he suffered brain damage in an explosion that killed one of the men in his command, Herman Mulligan. Among the souvenirs the elder Maharidge brought home was an omnipresent photograph of himself and Mulligan, as well as sporadic explosive rages that terrified the author throughout his childhood. Maharidge received no diagnosis or treatment for his injury and refused to talk about the war to the end of his days. After his death, the author, "a person obsessed with the past and what I could not heal," set out to discover the truth about his father's wartime experiences, learn who Mulligan was and, if possible, locate his inexplicably unidentified gravesite. He conducted interviews with almost 30 elderly members of his father's company, and he presents 12 of them at length. He also traveled to Okinawa to visit the site of his father's injury and meet with civilian survivors of the battle in an effort to lay his father's demons to rest. The result is a moving memoir of the war by someone who wasn't there but who suffered from wartime injuries just as surely as his father had. The veterans' interviews are sensitively conducted, powerful and disturbing, graphic descriptions of brutal and largely unnecessary combat with a suicidally determined enemy, and frank accounts of atrocities committed by both sides. Equally importantly, some also explore the men's difficulties in re-entering civilian life, placing in context the elder Maharidge's often unsuccessful struggles to live with his experiences among people who could not imagine or understand them. A powerful narrative of the dark side of American combat in the Pacific theater and the persistence of resulting injuries decades after the war ended.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781610393713
  • Publisher: PublicAffairs
  • Publication date: 4/8/2014
  • Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 359,899
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

PETE LARKIN has wide and deep voiceover and on-camera experience and has worked in virtually all media. In addition to his extensive narration and theater work, he has served as the public address announcer for the New York Mets from 1988-1993 and as a radio personality in Baltimore, Washington and New York.

DALE MAHARIDGE teaches at the Columbia Journalism School. Before that, he was a visiting professor at Stanford University for ten years and spent fifteen years as a newspaperman. Several of his hooks are illustrated with the work of photographer Michael S. Williamson. The first book, Journey to Nowhere: The Saga of the New Underclass (1985) later inspired Bruce Springsteen to write two songs. It was reissued in 1996 with an introduction by Springsteen. His second book, And Their Children After Them, won the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction in 1990.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 1, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Bring It Home

    This is one man's journey to honor his father's memory and that of his father's friend lost on a battlefield in the Pacific. At the same time the author is attempting to find the reasons for his father's periods of rage and his inability to communicate with his family, what he had witnessed on those war ravaged islands. If you know a veteran who has returned from war, any war, and refuses to talk about his experiences, you should read this book. If you have any illusions about war being good, or honorable, or just, you should read this book. If you think of the cost of war only in terms of dollars and cents or material items, you should read this book. If you think war ends when when a piece of paper is signed or the last bullets stop whizzing over the battlefield, you should read this book. The cost of war is not only measured by the casualties lying on the battlefield. It continues to be measured by countless veterans and their families who must deal with the trauma and destruction forced upon their lives by senseless and often unimaginable violence. Be prepared for some raw language and descriptions of war in it's stark and brutal reality. The descriptions of the violence, by men who stood toe to toe with the horror of it, is not a pretty thing. The necessity for these men to relieve themselves of the burdens they have carried from the battlefields is real and needed. This is a deeply moving book that cuts to the bone. Book provided for review by the well read folks at Library Thing and the publisher, Public Affairs.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 12, 2013

    Loved it.

    A great book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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