In Pharaoh's Army: Memories of the Lost War

In Pharaoh's Army: Memories of the Lost War

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by Tobias Wolff
     
 

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Whether he is evoking the blind carnage of the Tet offensive, the theatrics of his fellow Americans, or the unraveling of his own illusions, Wolff brings to this work the same uncanny eye for detail, pitiless candor and mordant wit that made This Boy's Life a modern classic.


From the Trade Paperback edition.  See more details below

Overview

Whether he is evoking the blind carnage of the Tet offensive, the theatrics of his fellow Americans, or the unraveling of his own illusions, Wolff brings to this work the same uncanny eye for detail, pitiless candor and mordant wit that made This Boy's Life a modern classic.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Wolff's memoir of his disillusioning experience as a soldier in Vietnam was a finalist for the NBA. (Oct.)
Library Journal
Novelist and short story writer Wolff, who recounted his early years in This Boy's Life (LJ 1/89), served as a junior officer adviser to a South Vietnamese army unit in the Mekong Delta for his tour in Vietnam. Wolff, a reluctant warrior at best, now offers an idiosyncratic, witty, and thoroughly enjoyable glimpse into his military service and his civilian life immediately before and after Vietnam. This extended essay is not so much a combat narrative as the story of a young man's struggle to reach maturity and coming to terms with his family, his loves, his America, and himself. Wolff's characters (most especially his father and the long-suffering Sergeant Benet) and the American and Vietnamese settings are vividly depicted in a style only a skilled craftsman could devise. An excellent addition to American literature and Vietnam collections for academic and public libraries.-John R. Vallely, Siena Coll. Lib., Loudonville, N.Y.
John Mort
Though trained for the Special Forces, Wolff--the acclaimed author of "This Boy's Life" (1989)--wasn't much of a warrior, spending his entire tour of duty in a muddy, obscure village in the delta. His most crucial assignment was to trade an authentic ChiCom rifle for a Zenith television so that he and the veteran sergeant who worked for him could watch "Bonanza" in color. He weaves into his Vietnam narrative the story of his sad, ne'er-do-well father and of a hopeless romance he enjoyed (and suffered) during his quasi-civilian year of language study in Washington, D.C. His is an extremely literary memoir, full of rueful, gracefully rendered anecdotes, most of them centering on his ineptness as a soldier. Back from language study, Wolff was first assigned to lead an airborne company on a jump. He couldn't remember how it was done except that the jump should begin at the appearance of yellow smoke. The smoke Wolff did see wasn't yellow, but he ordered his men out anyhow; they landed in a slimy landfill five miles short of the target. There's the story, too, of a hapless dog Wolff saved from a barbecue, only to have it end up on his plate at a farewell dinner. Wolff also delivers vivid accounts of close calls and a graphic report of the destruction of one small village in the aftermath of the Tet Offensive, but he never loses his pleasant, self-effacing tone, and because of his immaculate prose, his unlikely mix of memories is seamless. In fact, though it may seem an odd adjective for a war memoir, it's charming and could appeal to almost anyone.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307763754
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/01/2010
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
321,151
File size:
2 MB

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In Pharaoh's Army: Memories of the Lost War 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had to read this book for a school project and absolutley adored it! It was filled with a dry humor that I could really relate and just an incredible read. I could not put it down. Well worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
john pattwell More than 1 year ago
This book is a great sequel to Tobias Wolffs This boys life.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He shook his head. He suddenly felt dizzy and sick. Blood seemed to clog his ears and nose and a river of red swirled around his paws. He looked up and saw the moon was at its peak which meant it wad midnight. Blood red frost covered the ground. Suddenly darkness fell. Flamingfur could not see but a bright flame apeared and lit the Darkness. It burned away the blood and melted the frost. Then he woke up. 'What was it i jst saw?' He thought. 'Was it a vision?'