The Best Biographies of the Vietnam War Reviewed By BookViral

"A vivid and impassioned Vietnam War Biography..."

Nobody's Children

Recommend  for the coveted BookViral Crimson Quill. To make your recommendation simply click on the award badge below..…. 

  • Publisher: ‎ Atmosphere Press (August 14, 2023)
  • Publication date: ‎ August 14, 2023
  • Language: ‎ English
  • Print length: ‎ 525 pages
  • Genre:  Biographies of the Vietnam War

The BookViral Review:

“No animal shit from branding, no decaying corpses, puke, nor slaughterhouse could match the stinging ebullience of Vietnam”

A vivid and impassioned Vietnam War Biography Nobody’s Children: recollections from the maintenance line Vietnam ’67-’68 is the real war in Vietnam, told without histrionics or self-pity.

You’d be forgiven for thinking that Vietnam was just an infantryman’s war, with a host of blockbuster films and bestselling novels describing the day-to-day experience of Marine Corps infantry platoons in graphic and gritty detail but Vietnam was so much more and WD Olive’s Vietnam War Biography reminds us of this.

Olive’s narrative is so natural it feels as if his words are reaching you from more than a page-almost as if an old acquaintance is sitting across from you, nursing a drink and reminiscing in an atmosphere of shared emotion. He reels us in, delving deeply into his memories and the psyche of America’s Vietnam War machine, forcing us to become invested in his experiences and the friends with which he served.

Assigned to an Assault Helicopter Company, Olive’s biography does that effectively unsettling thing without which any war memoir wilts: it reminds us of the suddenness of death in war and makes us understand the overwhelming sense of randomness that often dictates who lives and dies. He brings this into sharp focus in his opening chapter with the death of his teammate Muser who takes Olive’s place on a repair mission and the shadow of Muser’s death lingers over the entirety of Olive’s biography culminating in an incredibly powerful posthumous letter Olive writes to him at the end of his book.

Although filled with images from the frontline, Nobody’s Children is nevertheless a book about people, an amazing variety of closely observed characters often caught up in circumstances beyond their wildest nightmares. It is a powerful work that brilliantly expresses the basic ambiguity of war: the repulsion of war’s destruction and the sanctuary soldiers seek in camaraderie. A depth of connection that those who have never served could never understand. Yes, you would expect there to be tangible pain and suffering in a memoir about the Vietnam War and Olive certainly doesn’t sugar coat it but it comes from a philosophical core and doesn’t rely on contrived drama to convey sentiment with his reflections coming from multi-dimensional directions

A Vietnam War Biography that comes vividly to life and leaves an impression that lingers long after the last page is turned, Nobody’s Children: recollections from the Maintenance Line Vietnam ’67-’68 is recommended without reservation and a Golden Quill read.

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