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A powerful work of literary military history from the New York Times bestselling author of In Harm’s Way and Horse Soldiers—the harrowing and redemptive account of an American army platoon fighting for survival during the Vietnam War.
On a single night, January 31, 1968, some 100,000 soldiers in the North Vietnamese Army attacked thirty-six cities throughout South Vietnam, hoping to topple that government and dislodge American forces. The twelve American boys of the recon platoon of the 101st Airborne Division, average age nineteen, are from small farms, California beach towns, and big cities like Chicago, and they are cast into a war they neither understand, nor, ultimately, feel they can win. The fighting was hand-to-hand, nonstop, and waged in endless small battles that forged this group into a lifelong brotherhood of survivors. Odyssey is about the young men who survived sixty days on the run from the enemy during the Tet Offensive, at the height of the Vietnam War.
Each young man lived one hundred years in these days and came home to a country that did not understand, and didn’t try to understand, what they had survived. They came home winners because they were alive; but were losers for having fought there. When they arrived, they landed in San Francisco, took off their uniforms, and walked back into America, where they fell silent and realized that not many wanted to hear the remarkable story they had to tell—until now.
Based on hundreds of hours of interviews, dozens of detailed letters written to and from Echo Company soldiers, a huge trove of Pentagon after-action reports, and travel to the scenes of battle with the American soldiers and some of their Vietnamese enemy soldiers, Odyssey breaks through the wall of time to tell this important story of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances.
|Product dimensions:||6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.20(d)|
About the Author
Doug Stanton is the author of the New York Times bestseller In Harm’s Way: The Sinking of the USS Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of Its Survivors. A former contributing editor at Esquire, Sports Afield, and Outside, Stanton is now a contributing editor at Men’s Journal and has written extensively on travel, sport, entertainment, and history. Stanton lives in his hometown of Traverse City, Michigan, with his wife, the investigative reporter Anne Stanton, and their three children.
Table of Contents
Author's Note xv
The Recon Platoon in Vietnam. December 1967-December 1968 xvii
Part I The Girl With The Peaches 5
Part II Wandering 125
Part III Homecoming 287
Acknowledgments and Sources 293
Bibliography and Suggested Reading 301
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Over the top....I was a grunt and a great deal of this book is just not very creditable ...a bad read and I have them all. Why embelish what is probably a good story.
Great reflection of what the brave young men lived during and after Viet Nam. The book is completely engrossing. Could not put it down.