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More Than a Memory: Reflections of Viet Nam (Reflections of History) Hardcover – January 5, 2009
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This book is filled with so many wonderful people, their personal stories, terrifying poems, horrific events and so many problems that still haunt them everyday. It is awful and unfortunate what they have gone through, and it makes it worse when there are still people out there who certainly don't give these men and women the respect they deserve so much.
They are living nightmares, it doesn't matter which war, which battle, which time period they served, they are all going through so much more then most of us could ever even begin to imagine.
I sat in absolute horror as I turned the pages and looked at some of the pictures inside, read about their losses, their lives that were ripped apart, and the agony they are still trying to cope with. One in particular, Marc Levy, really pulled and tugged at me, and not that I have been through anything near what he was, and is, but each day since I read this book, his poems have been permanently branded inside my mind.
These heroes have tons of talent, and it definitely isn't hidden in their writings. Very creative, and exceptional work, and so much gut wrenching stories, this is a rare gem of a book.
I would never recommend this for anybody who can't stomach gore and horror. This is all very real, and colorful and could possibly make some very disturbed. I can usually handle quite a bit, and being a fan of war movies, I figured this would be an easy, simple book to read, and well it wasn't. You can't put it down, and you can't stop re reading certain stories and poems.
I hope for the sake of the author's, that writing provides some sort of therapy, and I hope the same for any vet who may want to read this book to become inspired or maybe see how many are out there who are going through the same pain.
This book is not just a presentation of the typical Vietnam veterans, who like myself, never went to bed with the leftist ideology of the anti-war groups. It also gives the reader a different look at understanding those veterans who opposed the war. That may make some of us old veterans stand up and take notice - but in all fairness the editor chose not to censor, or limit the scope of the presentation. To me that is what I fought for. I do not enjoy having someone determine what is the proper thought process and this book clearly reveals a deep difference between the two groups. However, in the end, all of them wore the uniform and all of us suffered in our own ways.
The book is hard hitting and at times, tragic, dramatic, sad, angry, political, and even vulgar. In context of what the subject matter is and the emotional atmosphere involved it all works to give readers a gripping soulful look and feel for what these men went through. The book deals with PTSD and it lays out some of the social and phycological mine fields that they transverse in their daily lives. The words are like bullets to the heart and soul and there is plenty of ammunition for a true war for the soul!
This book is not an easy book to read emotionally - but I am grateful that these "memories" were captured so that we have a clearer view of what the real price of war is. There are some really moving personal tales in these pages. I hope that some veterans will not be tuned out by the chapter on the court martial. You do not have to agree with what these men did, or stood for, to see that they are damaged from the war as well.
Over-all this book gives us a good look at the issues of PTSD even when not directly focusing on that matter. My hope is that this book can serve as a bridge between veterans and those who did not serve. This is not an uplifting book to read but it is one that needs to be read and understood by all of us. In the end - war really is hell!
Victor R. Volkman
Victor Volkman has taken different energy and emotions that people have about the Vietnam War
and placed them inside this book. He even presents the memories that the Veterans have with the insightful spiritual being from them. This book is not a typical book on veterans, but a view of the ideaology of different groups that oppsed the war. All Veterans wants everyone to stand up and take notice, and to me that is what they have fought so hard for. It even shows that everyone suffers through the war in some way, even if it is not a war that is in their country.
This book is sad and dramatic, but the greatest in the world. It has a dramatic atmosphere and gives readers the feeling of actually being in the war, and shows that it affects everyones daily lifes. It is not a easy book to read as your feelings can be hurt, but I loved it and I am grateful I have found this book. I am grateful that Victor R Volkman took the time to write it, as it hit my heart just the right way. I have given my copy to my uncle who is a veteran himself. I recommend this book to everyone, but especially to veterans and their families.