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Posted May 31, 2013
Posted May 18, 2013
A wonderful contribution to the historic record and a delight to read. Ross's words bring to life the pains of war and the delights of the human spirit. As a veteran and history teacher, I highly recommend this book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 12, 2013
I have known Jim Ross for many years, and had heard bits and pieces about his experiences in 'Nam. I also knew that he was a good writer. But none of that prepared me for "Outside the Wire." Having read a large number of books about warfare, I find that I appreciate most those books which narrow their focus down to the individual soldiers or squads...the more honest and intimate the view of their lives and experiences the better. Jim's fine book delivers, with intense honesty and frankness. The many color photos are specific to the action and aid greatly in visualizing the environment and the faces. Clear maps also enhance the alternatively scary, thoughtful, funny and heart-wrenching narrative. I am grateful that Jim chose to share his memories of a difficult time.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 11, 2013
I read Ross' book twice in the span of four days. It is resting now on my night stand and I suspect that it will again call me to reread it instead of sleeping. Easy and peaceful, as there are no mosquitoes or RPGs.
In 1970 I was a college student without the knowledge or experience to navigate the opposing universes of hawk and dove. There were veterans and heroes, who battled a clearly delineated evil in WWII, supporting the effort to oppose communism. There were students protesting against the war and sitting next to me in math class. My Physics instructor left for Vietnam and did not return. The Leidenfrost separating these universes were the raw events of Chicago, Kent State, and Columbia.
It is improbable that any one person or set of values can be called upon to explain or to describe the turbulent decade of the 1960s. Paradoxically, that is precisely what makes Ross' book so valuable. It is a rare window to view a time and a place, words and images pouring through it, illuminating the wrenching experiences of an articulate and thoughtful patriot. One soldier answering the call many could not hear. With this amazing memoir, perhaps we can.