Recent headlines have buffeted us with stories of an imminent threat from the world's newest nuclear power…North Korea. At the same time, the United States is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War, a conflict that was one of the bloodiest in our nation's history and is at the root of this new threat. But many are not familiar with the realities of this war that took more than 4 million lives, including over 36,000 Americans, and with the incredible sacrifices of millions of young U.S. soldiers.
Maybe Dying Would Have Been Easier
In Korea’s Sleeping Ghosts, you'll open a time capsule and read words that were written some 40 years ago, but just recently uncovered. The author, Lee Miller, takes you on a remarkable journey through his personal experiences in the war, seen through the eyes of Lieutenant Pete Mullins. Mullins tastes the resentment of being yanked from home to a far off land; endures the hardships and horrors of frontline combat; delights in the insane humor and hilarious camaraderie of battlefield friendships; and grasps at a tantalizing romance that always seems just out of reach. He's forced to overcome paralyzing fear to lead men into battle, and contends with the often-absurd orders coming through the chain of command. You'll travel with Mullins as he learns the truth about himself and the men with whom he's fighting, and in the end comes face-to-face with the harshest reality of all.
About the Author:Lee Miller was born in Ashland, Ohio in 1926. He served in World War II and was promoted to army staff sergeant at the young age of 19, but the war ended before he was deployed overseas. As a 2nd and 1st lieutenant in the Korean War, he served as a rifle platoon leader in I company, 31st infantry, 8th Army, and fought on the famed Heartbreak Ridge. Bill Mauldin, the famous cartoonist and war correspondent, bunked with him for a time and wrote articles about the platoon. Mr. Miller died in 1992.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I decided to buy Korea's Sleeping Ghosts after a friend recommended it to me and after seeing a news story about it. Since it's the 50th anniversary of the truce in that war, it seemed a good time for me to read about this conflict, the details of which I'm admittedly ignorant. The introduction and foreword set the book up nicely, giving the background of the interesting and surprising story of how the novel came to be. The book is almost a memoir of experiences of the main character, Lt. Peter Mullins, who is apparently patterned after the author, Lt. Lee Miller. It follows Mullins from the time he arrives in Korea through all of his experiences on and off the battlefield, and finally climaxes in a heart-wrenching event that I won't detail. Though it exposes the serious issues of Mullins' struggles with his own self-doubts, his fight to gain the trust of his men, and his platoon's scary times in battle, there is a refreshing light side to the novel. There are many funny, light-hearted moments, and much comical dialogue, almost akin to M*A*S*H sometimes. The most enjoyable aspect of the book for me was the thoughtful musings of Lt. Mullins. The reader is always privy to what he is thinking, is worried about, is hopeful of, and is fearful for, and this is delightful. You get to 'hear' Mullins as he's changed by the people he meets and the things he witnesses, often for the better. If you've ever wondered, as I have, what what soldiers think about minute to minute hour by hour, day by day when in the face of so much danger and suffering, this book tells you. It also answered another one of my questions, which is what do men (and women!) do with all the time they have on their hands when not in battle. Mullins is a character you come to care a lot, which makes the ending (which I loved, by the way) all the more moving and powerful. There's also a teasing romance with one of the characters, and I wish the author had spent a little more time on it. The book has a photo section that really brings the characters to life because the real people that the book's characters portray are pictured and identified. I only wish the book had developed some of Mullins' antogonists more. War books are really not to my liking, but if more were written like this, I just might become a fan! Well, maybe...