No Man's War: Irreverent Confessions of an Infantry Wife

No Man's War: Irreverent Confessions of an Infantry Wife

by Angela Ricketts


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No Man's War: Irreverent Confessions of an Infantry Wife by Angela Ricketts

Raised as an army brat, Angie Ricketts though she knew what she was in for when she eloped with Darrin - then an Infantry Lieutenant - on the eve of his deployment to Somalia. Since then, Darrin, now a Colonel, has been deployed eight times, serving four of those tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. And Ricketts has lived every one of those deployments intimately - distant enough to survive the years apart from her husband, but close enough to share a common purpose and a lifestyle they both love.

With humor, candor, and a brazen attitude, Ricketts pulls back the curtain on a subculture many readers know, but few ill ever experience Counter to the dramatized snapshot seen on Lifetime's Army Wives , Ricketts digs into the personalities and posturing that officers' wives must survive daily - whether navigating a social event at the base, suffering through a husband's prolonged deployment, or reacting to a close friend's death in combat.

At its core, No Man's War is a story of sisterhood and survival. As Ricketts states: "We tread those treacherous waters together. Do we sometimes shove each other's heads underwater for a few seconds? Maybe even on purpose? Of course. Are we sometimes dragged underwater ourselves by the undertow created by all of us struggling together too closely? Without a doubt. But we never let each other drown. Our buoyancy is our survival."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781619025516
Publisher: Counterpoint Press
Publication date: 07/14/2015
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Angie Ricketts holds a master’s degree in Social Psychology/Human Relations and an undergraduate degree in Sociology. She worked part-time for the American Red Cross in Germany in the 1990’s but since then her formal education has been used to navigate the politics and personalities that come with being an officer’s wife. Her husband remains on active duty but transitioned to Homeland Defense in 2012. She lives in Colorado Springs, CO.

Read an Excerpt

I’m a fresh start girl. Today is Day One. Today we start counting down the days, 455 to go. I walk into the bathroom and stare at his sink with his few ‘personal hygiene’ things neatly lined up. If I had to look at that tube of deodorant for fifteen months, pick it up to dust under it, I would surely lose my mind. No. My way is better. Fresh. I feel limp. Everything is gray. I decide to lie down before I start my ritual. The bed smells like him and it does not comfort me. I want that smell gone. It’s going to be fifteen months and I won’t be one of those women sleeping with some old t-shirt, clinging to his long faded scent.

Part of my deployment ritual is to remove his daily things right away. It’s easier for me. I compartmentalize his crap, and I compartmentalize my emotions. That ugly faux leather recliner of his. I want this done before the kids return, so I drag it out to the garage. It does not come willingly; it fights me the whole way. It slams one of my toes, bringing a new round of tears and anger to my face. The chair refuses to comply, but I won’t let it stop me. Eventually it ends in the garage, pissed at me and defeated, but satisfied at having the last word by leaving a huge gouge in the new hardwood floors. That will be my one constant reminder of this day for the next fifteen months.

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No Man's War: Irreverent Confessions of an Infantry Wife 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When I heard this book was coming out I worried it might be another whiny story like the other handful of military spouse biographies but it was the opposite. I should not have been so surprised. Mrs. Ricketts is humble, shows her own flaws in great detail and is hard on herself as anyone else in this book and  maybe even too hard on herself. I am not the fairest of reviewers because I had the honor of serving under Colonel Ricketts in Iraq in TASK FORCE GHOST. Under the worst circumstances and I did not  know the details until reading this book. I never once heard him complain. He took care of soldiers first  and himself last. The colonel led his men on every single mission and was the first off the helicopter and the last on. He led from the front when other commanders choose to lead from the rear. He never asked anything of his soldiers that he did not do himself. I was single then but I met Mrs. Ricketts on several occasions before and after Iraq and knew her to be  highly revered and respected for her outspokenness and willingness to do what was right for our families. She is as witty and informal in person as on the page. I read a review that portrayed Mrs. Ricketts as "rank obsessed" and I laughed out loud. From what I know she and the colonel were dedicated to our squadron like no other. They treated everyone the same. I observed Mrs. Ricketts at various functions and she spoke to general's wives in the exact way she spoke to private's wives. That woman did not kiss anyone's butt ever that I saw. My mother was sick during our deployment and a year later Mrs. Ricketts stopped me after a ceremony and asked how my mother was doing and remembered her name. There were almost over 600 soldiers in our TASK FORCE and she remembered everyone. I tried to read this book as if I did not know the Ricketts at all. As I read the book though I could hear Mrs. Ricketts voice as if she were speaking to me. I did not put my kindle down once I started reading. Her ability to tell a story is a natural talent and I am so proud to have served with such fine people. I hope this book receives the critical acclaim it deserves. It is not only a timely and painful story but it must be written. Mrs. Ricketts was the perfect person to write it. I will recommend this book t o every civilian family member and friend who asks silly questions about military life. I am getting married later this year and my fiancee needs to read this book so she knows what she is signing up for!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sometimes the truth is hard to swallow, and Mrs. Ricketts does a superb job in telling her truths. This read brings to light the good, the bad, and the downright ugly that military spouses have endured post 9/11. It's a different Army than your mom or grandmother experienced. There is a weary secret war behind the scenes of spouses who are the "Kool-aid drinkers" versus those who now have Black Soul Phenomenon (read the book)! Ricketts is gutsy enough to share her personal experiences that, up until now, would never be discussed publicly. These are HER experiences, and I imagine the "perfumed turds" that Ricketts so eloquently describes would never "get it," much less admit it as being the truth. I recommend this book to those considering marrying into the military. The Kool-aid drinkers and black souls alike will often haughtily tell young spouses "you knew what you were getting into when you married Joe." No Man's War provides clear insight as to what it entails to be a military spouse in today's Army. While the "Sisterhood" is real, we are also our own worst enemies. Ricketts account gives the real deal, no sugar coating. This is the real, raw deal.
CarolJSon More than 1 year ago
I want to praise the author for putting her neck out by speaking so candidly of the relationships and politics of a closed little niche rarely exposed to the world. It is clear as a bell that the war has taken a toll on those who have deployed over and over again. The author and her "army sisters" have paid dearly as well. I love that Mrs. Ricketts does not ask for sympathy or paint a victimy portrait. Her writing style and voice make this book a real page turner. Like she says, the story can not be told in a chronological way. Spoiler Alert. The end hit me with a wallop. This book certainly contains some less than flattering portrayals of characters including herself.Her relationships are complicated. In the end I hope she forgives herself as much as those around her.I see nothing terribly controversial about this book, as stated by other reviews, but a personal account of her own life and feelings. The book is full of angelic characters and demons as well. But it takes a truly gifted writer to lend a sympathetic voice to all the characters, which she does splendidly.Many characters was motivated from a place of self-preservation and that often brings out the worst in human nature as well as the best. This book is a beautiful and introspective look inside the world of one army wife who has the guts to tell it how she saw it. Yes, there are moments that I had to reread paragraphs because I couldn't believe what I had read but that is what separates a flowery memoir from a gritty memoir. Mrs' Ricketts has exposed her own underbelly.  Bravo to her. I can't wait to read what she writes next. This book left me hungry for more.    
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been wrestling with myself about what to write in this review for weeks. On the one hand, the book is well composed, though the editing is a bit clunky. (Author tells us the something early on and then repeats it later as if she is "dishing" it for the first time, refers to husband as D at least once.) On the other, it is the grace that the author seems to so desperately seek that she withholds from so many of the complex humans she attempts to describe in her book. The end product is gossipy, speculative, and mean-spirited. It did not have to be. There was a good tale to be told here. Unfortunately, the author chose snark rather than sensitivity and the end product left me cold.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This read with great honesty and humor. I highly recomend this book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For the last 13 years military leaders, and sometimes their families, have appeared on television speaking of bravery, sacrifice and pain. But the public has never really had a look into what the families REALLY go through. Civilian say "support the troops" but really know nothing of the meat grinder that military families have been going through for over a decade or how it has effected those behind the lines. Ricketts describes it all perfectly. Yes it is HER experience and everyone's varies in details, but the lives of those left behind, the emotions and the pain are all the same. Read this if you are interested in how military families have served our nation in ways most civilians can't imagine.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Incredible facets of emotions here, telling her side of military life. Everyone has their own interpretation and I will not presume I know. But the author wrote a story so compelling that I as a reader continued turning page after page, not once bored out of my mind. What I gathered after all the ranting and raving along the way revenge and disrespect how can you not continue to read it. The author put her trials and tribulations to pen and paper and you got to respect that. She knew the backlash from the military family community but this is her side and how she was feeling at the time. Have you notice gossips turns ugly. Deploying, ugh sucks, that aching pain in your heart. Your senses dull, a tear ready to fall every single second. The reunion, tearful with overwhelming exuberance of joy. I got that part but what happens after and before the events, Angela made it known. No sugar coating it and yeah, Angela is telling her tale, don't get offended, open your mind and receive it. The author wrote these words, "Memories of how it brought out the best and worst in all of us. How lucky we were to have stood in those shoes and felt what it means to live through wartime. And none of us wants to lose that. Even if I had a heart attack along the way. Every single word and every single day was worth it. Together we found beauty that lies in the center of chaos. Now that is awesome! The author wrote with so much reverence that her spirit of emotion flowed in her writing and translated so vividly in this book. Thank you! I won this book on Goodreads, First Read Giveaway. Thank you, Darlene Cruz
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Angie, I read your book and wanted to let you know how much it resonated with me. Which sounds weird because I wasn't an Army brat, I didn't marry a military man, and in pretty much every way you and I have led very different lives. So I was deeply moved and fascinated to find that we are not at all different. So much so that we may actually be the same person occupying different settings in some bizarre alternate reality scenario. So anyway, thank you. You wrote a fabulous book and you should enjoy all the good things that come of it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What distinguishes a great memoir from an okay memoir is character development and voice. Ricketts has both. This is an excellent memoir. I felt like I was standing in her shoes and didn't know what each upcoming page held. I recommend this book highly to anyone and everyone. This is a rare glimpse behind a curtain that's rarely pulled back at all and never this far, just as the other reviews have stated. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fast beach read. Could barely put it down and left me thinking and wanting more. Thought the end came a little quickly and I wanted resolution about what happened to some of the issues in the book. Overall a gorgeous book that I will likely reread. As recommended, this is the perfect beach book. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I too am an Army brat and an Army spouse so there is validity to this memoir regarding life for those who serve our nation. I however would not recommend this book to anyone unless you are in the mood for a smut novel versus a good piece of literature. The book actually has a pretty decent beginning, but towards the middle you find yourself sorry that you spent $26.00 to read about terrible stereotypes regarding other ethnicities, lack of good writing skills, and tacky name calling of others such as “perfume turds”. This memoir is one of a very judgmental and mean-spirited, overly complaining, self-righteous woman. Good authors of good literature typically don’t drown their works with childish and ugly vocabulary. The military as well as civilian life is full of people who struggle with issues and it saddens me that Ms. Ricketts finds it appropriate to write humiliating and mean things about other human beings in her book. To complain about another officer who she states is addicted to porn and alcohol without offering any supporting evidence such as an arrest record or UCMJ finding, is downright disrespectful and quite frankly is just more gossip spreading amongst the ranks. I was glad to read that her husband is not as judgmental as she is regarding the fact that not every Soldier will deploy in their career. Our military has specialties that support every effort both during war and peacetime and not everyone will deploy “down range”, but that doesn’t make them any less of human being or a Soldier for that matter. Her negative judgment of others who have not deployed is childish and sad. If you enjoy smut novels filled with gossip, meanness and judgment passing, then this book is for you. If you prefer a memoir with FACTS and not speculation and gossip about others, then you should pass on this read and save your money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I heard the author interviewed and she explained this is the nation's longest war in our history. When you combine Iraq and Afghanistan the war has gone on for twenty one years and is not ending. She made a staggering impact and I could not wait to read the book. I was reading while cooking dinner and raced back to the book last night and stayed up through the night to finish. What a beautiful voice and gift on taking me as a civilian along for a ride and into a world I did not know. I have even more respect now for those who serve and especially those who have served in combat over and over again. Best memoir I've read since The Glass Castle. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just finished reading No Man's War. Excellent work Angela Ricketts. I am not a word girl...I cannot write. I'll leave that to the professionals. But I will tell everyone, in my own sloppy words, that this book was enlightening, heart wrenching and fantastic. I am a member of the sisterhood of Army Wives. There are moments when I've seen, thought, or experienced the same things the author did. I actually FELT this book. There is a presence that lingers in those pages that is hard to describe. Almost as if the author left part of her soul in there. The people who got bogged down in the personalities and drama didn't read the last, most important parts. The people described were NOT the story. They were the noise and obstacles that she had to overcome to find her way "home" again. And the whole thing is about finding the courage to within ourselves.  Was it worth the read? Yes, definitely. And I'm going to read it was that good!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have just started this book and cannot finish.  Yes, it is her perspective as an Army wife, but she has succeeded in offending me twice by pg 98.  I do not consider it a " double yuck" to be in the the same category as an Army officer's spouse.  Also, nursing does happen to be a career.  Writing appears to be a hobby for the author, who does not realize how her remarks are coming across to the readers.