Foley was there at the start of Vietnam. In his unforgettable first novel, he takes readers back to the war and to those parts of the jungle the Viet Cong called their own. His hero, Jim Hollister, is a first lieutenant in an experimental Long Range Patrol detachment that makes assaults on the enemy. A graphic portrait of the human spirit at war.Foley was there at the start of Vietnam. In his unforgettable first novel, he takes readers back to the war and to those parts of the jungle the Viet Cong called their own. His hero, Jim Hollister, is a first lieutenant in an experimental Long Range Patrol detachment that makes assaults on the enemy. A graphic portrait of the human spirit at war.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 1992-06-08 Strangely enough for a novel set in wartime Vietnam, this work is virtually free of conflict. Foley, who served in Vietnam himself, has created a series of episodes with no coherent theme or plot. Lt. Jim Hollister leads a platoon of men on dangerous missions. His team is suspected of having destroyed a South Vietnamese village, but after he is questioned once the matter is dropped. A buddy of Hollister's dies, and when he accompanies the body home, the lieutenant hears veiled references to the antiwar movement (``peace pussies'') but never connects with anyone involved in it. While his fellow soldiers are carousing and visiting prostitutes, Hollister lies on his bunk writing letters to his fiancee, but the romance, with a publishing novicep. 15 , is unconvincing. The point of view of a Vietcong soldier (who destroyed the town Hollister had been accused of savaging) is introduced in the first chapter, but he dies soon after, having no extended impact. Authentic military lingo is so prevalent that the novel includes an abbreviated glossary, but overuse of acronyms distances the reader from the action, so that even the Long Range Patrol's death-defying missions fail to intrigue. (July)
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