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Pt. I "When This Bloody War Is Over" 15
1 Anticipation 17
2 Shock 45
3 Anxiety 75
Pt. II "Soldier from the Wars Returning" 103
4 As If Nothing Had Ever Happened 105
5 Open Wounds 137
6 "It's Been a Long, Long Time" 171
Pt. III Echoes of War 203
7 "The War's Over, Soldier" 205
8 Aftershocks 237
9 Picking Up the Pieces 263
Author's Note 291
Selected Primary Sources 297
I first read Wings of Morning several years ago and simply devoured the second book, In the Shadows of War, in no time. I have been waiting for the third book of stories about the world war two generation from professor Childers for some time. I must say THE WAIT WAS WORTH IT. Simply an awesome book from a very good researcher and writer. In SOLDIER, Childers weaves the story of three returning soldiers and three families. It is a hard story that is multi-layered and is not always easy to read. Having that said, however, I understand my grandfathers a lot more from reading the book. I can empathize with some of their actions after the war. This book would be a great campanion juxtaposition to the Brokaw books. As a teacher, I plan to use both books to help students really see the costs of war. Both are needed. Childers fills his book with some incredibly useful and understandable statistics that amazed me. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in what things were really like during the years after WW2.
If you like Thomas Childers, you must check out his teaching company course that is a military and social history of the war. Especially the last lecture which tells more about the air crew and family of the Black Cat bomber. That lecture is a lot like the three books - informative, professional, personal, and thoughtful. It will leave you with questions and a deep appreciation of the American warrior and their families - who perhaps suffer the most of all. Thank you professor Childers for all of your hard work and for helping the rest of us understand the history of a very important time period.
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Outstanding read and unbelieveable what servicemen and women endure for our freedoms and our country. The youth of today have no clue what war really is all about, and the problem is they don't give a damn either. God bless our troups, past and present!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 30, 2009
This book fills a giant hole in our understanding of WW II and its soldiers. We have all read about the men who did such heroic things in binging about the end of the war. But, we never think about what happened when they came home.
I remember the guilt my father had because he never served. He was older, born in 1911, and had a family. He was eventually drafted to report on January 1, 1946. Nearly all his contemporaries had served in the war and he carried this "survivor/draft dodger" guilt for much of his life. I well remember his poker nights where he had a group of veterans over to play cards. He would talk about all that they had done and had sacrificed; one was a paraplegic B-29 crewman. My father suffered a very mild and different form of what these men, Childers, Allen and Gold, suffered. But even without being a veteran, his psychological problems impacted his children.
I remember many of my friends having had problems with their fathers and having had very difficult family problems. Now, I hope I understand better what was going on.
This book is very well written and is absolutely gripping. We all should be aware of the problems that combat veterans suffered. And we should all be aware of the problems of the veterans of our volunteer Army that serve multiple tours overseas. What aggavated problems will they experience arising from modern pre-emptive and other wars?
Posted March 9, 2011
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