The Deserter's Tale: The Story of an Ordinary Soldier Who Walked Away from the War in Iraq

The Deserter's Tale: The Story of an Ordinary Soldier Who Walked Away from the War in Iraq


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 “Destined to become part of the literature of the Iraq war . . . A substantial contribution to history.”— Los Angeles Times

Now in paperback, The Deserter’s Tale is the first memoir from a soldier who deserted from the war in Iraq, and a vivid and damning indictment of the American military campaign. In spring 2003, young Oklahoman Joshua Key was sent to Ramadi as part of a combat engineer company. It was not the campaign against terrorists and evildoers he had expected. Key saw Iraqi civilians beaten, shot, and killed, or maimed for little or no provocation. After seven months in Iraq, Key was home on leave and knew he could not return. So he took his family and went underground in the United States, finally seeking asylum in Canada after fourteen months in hiding. Detailing the grinding horrors of life as part of an occupying force, The Deserter’s Tale is the story of a conservative-minded family man and patriot who went to war believing unquestioningly in his government’s commitment to integrity and justice, and how what he saw in Iraq transformed him into someone who could no longer serve his country.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802143457
Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date: 12/21/2007
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 256
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x (d)

About the Author

Joshua Key was raised in Guthrie, Oklahoma, and now lives in Canada. The Deserter's Tale is his first book.
Lawrence Hill is the author of several novels and works of nonfiction, including Some Great Thing, Any Known Blood, and the award-winning national bestseller The Book of Negroes. He also wrote the memoir Black Berry, Sweet Juice: On Being Black and White in Canada and co-authored, with Joshua Key, The Deserter’s Tale: The Story of an Ordinary Soldier Who Walked Away from the War in Iraq.

Table of Contents

Map     ix
Prologue     1
Childhood     11
Recruitment and Training     35
Early Days in Iraq     57
Return to Ramadi     91
The Girl at the Hospital     111
al-Habbaniyah     125
al-Qa'im     154
AWOL     179
Epilogue     209
Photographs     232
Author's Note     235

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