Chickenhawk

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Robert Mason's bestselling account of his service as a chopper pilot in Vietnam--a no-holds-barred autobiography that reveals the war's shattering legacy in the heart of a returning vet.
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Chickenhawk

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Overview

Robert Mason's bestselling account of his service as a chopper pilot in Vietnam--a no-holds-barred autobiography that reveals the war's shattering legacy in the heart of a returning vet.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140072181
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/1/1984
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Pages: 480
  • Product dimensions: 5.18 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 51 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(39)

4 Star

(9)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 51 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2011

    Good read for Vietnam vets - compelling tale of helicopter pilots of that era.

    The author presents his view of a dirty war fought by men and women who were responsible soldiers and thought they were appropriately serving their country. The pilots unselfishly flew in extremely hazardous situations day and night trying to do their part in fighting this war. Not all who served experienced the same kind of trauma that troops serving today in the middle east experience. Most were fairly young,highly trained but inexperienced,and many had little moral character but served with pride even when their friends, neighbors, and country abandoned them in protest of the war.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 24, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Tough Reading, Fine Writing

    I have never had any desire to enter ground combat. I have read a few works about that experience. This is one of the best of them. I like Mason even better than I like Tim O'Brien, whose work very much impresses me. I want now to read more of his writing.I very much admire the later works. I do not usually like reading books about combat. I am glad not to have had to endure that experience and I am old now and not highly likely to endure it now. The writing is of a high order. The narrative is clear, persuasive, and engaging. Someone better than I am needs to review this work. I very highly recommend it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 7, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Helicopter Combat at it's best

    This is a book that truly puts you in the cockpit of a 'Huey Gunship' helicopter during the early days of Vietnam. The Author takes you on a month by month tour of helicopter battle starting in August, 1965 and concludes with Mason's disillusionment with the war that would ultimately claim 65,000 American lives and Mason's paralyzing bouts with P.S.T.D., alcoholism and unemployment when he returns to civilian life. The story concludes with a part II called 'Chickenshack:Back In The World' where he descends into criminal activity and the life of a drug smuggler. Needless to say, it is interesting to note Mason's gradual change from an aqggressive pro-war 'hawk' 'supporting the war' to at the end of his tour having paralyzing anxiety of dying, P.S.T.D flashbacks 'thus labelling himself a 'chicken' and the title of this book'. Mason concludes with the question:'why don't the S.Vietnamese fight the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese like the VC and N.V.A. fight the S. Vietnamese'? Mason answers this by putting forth the assertion that without the support of our allies (the S.Vietnamese)the U.S. was going to (and ultimately did) lose the war. And if the S. Vietnamese didn't care, why were we there in the first place and continuing to fight an unwinnable war? Mason states that the people in Washington must have known this. The signs were too obvious:plans leaked to the V.C., reluctant combatants, mutinies in the ARVN (the S. Vietnamese Army), political corruption, S. Vietnamese marines at Danang fighting S.Vietnamese marines, and the ubiquitous Vietnamese idea that the North's leader, Ho Chi Minh would eventually win. Regardless, all these ideas are intertwined in a personal story chock full of raging madness of death, frightening extractions of wounded and dying men and combat experience. This is one book I will reread many times.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2012

    The best ever book written

    This was a book that I couldn't put down until I finished. My uncle, Major Ed Behne, served from 1967-1970. Major Behne is the Vietnam War's second-most decorated army pilot, having received two Distinguished Flying Crosses, a Legion of Merit, a VN Cross of Gallantry with Silver Star and Palm, two Silver Stars, six Bronze Stars, VN Service Medal (9 campaigns), two Meritorious Unit Citations, and 80 Air Medals.

    He will always be my hero and an example of a True American. After I read this book I asked him if it was factual and he agreed it was. He passed away a few years ago and his death left a hole in my heart.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2011

    Outstanding

    As a crewchief and gunner with the First Cavalry Division 1968 to 1970, Robert Mason offeres the experience of the war and the feelings of the troops about it as it was, accurately and without embellishments

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 18, 2000

    Chickenhawk, a soldiers story

    A book that cannot be put down,however sad it may be. Mr. Mason is a soldiers soldier. His beginings were that of a chivalrous knight fighting the good fight in a troubled time. A time where being an American was not easily defined. An Army aviator is a special breed defined by Mason's character and narrated in minute detail. You can feel the pain he feels in the decisions he makes. This book puts you in the cockpit and at the basecamp. Whether you are in the military or not, if you have an interest in aviation, the military, or what it was like to be a soldier in one of the most troubled times in America, you need to read this book. The only down side is the ending.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2013

    Great read,

    I use to eod

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 26, 2013

    Buy now!

    I am 75 year old aviation aficionado. My book interests tend toward fiction writers such as Grisham, Elmore Leonard and Carl Hiassen. But I love flying stuff. I first heard of Chickenhawk some years ago. It had many positive reviews back then. So when I saw it at Amazon nook, I grabbed it.

    Mason describes what to him was an ordinary part of his life in an extraordinary way. It's a very personal story about an area of life most of us have no clue about. For me, it added much 'meat' to those evening news shots of slicks and gunships whumping their way back and forth across the landscape of Viet Nam. Who was in those slicks, what they were facing, doing, saying every day is here in Mason's book. It is harrowing and terrifying to say the least. But Mason makes it all sound like being a taxi driver in the middle of Manhattan. I can see why so many military and commercial pilots are so passionate about this book.

    For non aviators this is no less an absorbing and exciting story of helicopter warfare. Facing real death or dismemberment every day is only part of the narrative. I was grateful to Mason to include the bonds of love formed between the crews, knowing your buddies were likely to be gone tomorrow.

    What spoke greatly of Manson's character was the revelations of his doubts of the necessity of the Viet Nam war and who ensured its existence.

    I recommend to anyone, especially if you watched the news back then.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2013

    Excellent

    Wonderful read about a true American hero.

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  • Posted November 29, 2012

    Excellent book! . This is a firsthand no BS story about the heli

    Excellent book! . This is a firsthand no BS story about the helicopter war. I like it because Mason takes you with him on his flights.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    Mj

    Totally! My bestie calls Zayn her sex kitten...shes a weirdo. ~Tori

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2012

    Skai

    Hey do u wanna chat on dipper last result?? — Kat

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2012

    ZACHARY

    DONT LEAVE! *cough* ~SAM ps Destin has no idea i stole my nook back... i dont want u to go... Damon left already... plz dont go. *coughs* plz?

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2012

    Go to

    Nick result 7!!! Its cool

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2012

    MJ!!!!!!!!!!!!! LISTEN UP!!!!!

    Im dating a guy! His name is Joshua!!!! He is cute! :) Skai :) xx

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2012

    Great book!

    Great book!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2012

    Must Read

    I read about the needless death of our soldiers who fought for a country where most of the people of that country would not fight for. Brave American kids and career soldiers doing what was asked of them knowing that their death could be the end result. My father and friends were some of those soldiers and I am so proud of what they stood for and what they did. It is an honor to know any of our soldiers.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 5, 2011

    Excellent

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2011

    Highly recommended

    A shocking account of the Vietnam war through the eyes of an observation helicopter pilot. Those guys were absolutely fearless. A very good book and a worthwhile read.

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  • Posted February 1, 2011

    This is the best book I've ever read

    This book is honest, eloquent, carefully written and evocative. I have thousands of books. This is - without a doubt - the best book I've ever read, now at least 25 times.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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