Book Reviews

Reviews of books by MWSA members. Reviews appear in reverse chronological order, with the most recent review posted appearing first.
Note: Some older reviews are being reposted to this site and those will appear out of order.

Angel from Vietnam: A memoir of growing up, the Vietnam War, a daughter, and healing..., The

Title: The Angel from Vietnam: A memoir of growing up, the Vietnam War, a daughter, and healing...
Author: Jim Stewart
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Reviewer: Bill McDonald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 1413723187

In 1970, after four years in Vietnam, Jim Stewart left behind his daughter, Phuong. It is estimated that fifty thousand Amerasians were left behind when America pulled out of the country for good in 1973. Jim carried this with him for years after the war. Join him on his journey through personal tragedy as a young boy in Maryland, his often humorous adventures in the Army, and the serious events that took place during his years in Vietnam and afterwards. Often humorous, with a wide array of memorable characters in his life, this is a story that will bring a smile to your face, a tear to your eye, and leave you with a sense of spiritual healing. All from The Angel from Vietnam.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Stewart, Jim

Women At Risk – We Also Served

Title: Women At Risk – We Also Served
Author: Noonie Fortin
Genre: Non-Fiction, Biography
Reviewer: Bill McDonald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): ISBN / EAN

Women At Risk: We Also Served is about women who served our country since before World War II to present day. All branches of the military are included, officers and enlisted personnel, as well as women who volunteered as civilians going to a war zone, those that stayed stateside, and other loved ones. Included are clerks, drivers, heavy equipment operators, nurses, USO and ARC volunteers, and more. These women explain some of the things they did or do in the military or as civilians. They tell us why they volunteered, how their lives were changed, and answer the question, Would I do it again? More than sixty women are profiled in this book. Their stories are finally being sharedmany for the first time.This book is for readers of all ages including students. It will encourage patriotism as you read each chapter. They encourage both the reader and listener to talk more and ask questions about their own family military background.Noonie Fortin realized there was a need for this type of book each time she entered a bookstore and couldnt find very many books about women who served their country.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Fortin, Noonie

Simple Survival A Family Outdoors Guide

Title: Simple Survival A Family Outdoors Guide
Author: Gary L. Benton
Genre: Non-Fiction, How-To
Reviewer: Bill McDonald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0983042993

Gary Benton has previously authored twelve books of fiction, non-fiction, and Southern humor. Such notable authors as, Matt Braun, Stephen Lodge, Don Bendell, actor James Drury and many others have endorsed his work. This survival book, "Simple Survival, a Family Outdoors Guide," is a Silver Award Winner from the Military Writers Society of America. Gary spent over 23 years on active duty in the United States Air Force and retired as a Senior Master Sergeant. Years of wilderness outdoor skills are in this book, along with survival tips. Learn survival so during the next natural disaster or terrorist attack you and your family can survive! Learn to survive with just a survival knife and a little survival gear, or with a survival kit. Survival is simple, using Gary's skills, and anyone can become a survivor! Take this book along during your next camping trip or use it when facing a real emergency and learn survival of the fittest! Survive the simple way, the Simple Survival way. Become a survivor!

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Benton, Gary L.

Fire from the Sky: A Diary Over Japan

Title: Fire from the Sky: A Diary Over Japan
Author: Ron Greer, Mike Wicks
Genre: Non-Fiction, History
Reviewer: Bill McDonald

ISBN (links go to the MWSA Amazon store): 0976871203

"May 26, 1945 target Tokyo; the target was the eastern part of the industrial section of Tokyo. It was hot as hell too, because the Japanese were waiting for us. We went into the target individually and as we made our sweep, one Jap twin-engine fighter was waiting about 20 miles off the coast and followed us over the target. Flak was very heavy and searchlights were estimated at about 400 in number in the Tokyo area. We were in the searchlights all the way through the target. Losses were estimated to be about 18 B-29's. One crew came back with the tail almost shot off and the tail gunner had been killed instantly. On both raids the industrial centers we hit had an estimated civilian population of 50,000 to 75,000 people per square mile area. Fires started by the incendiary bombs covered 10 square miles and could be seen 200 miles out to sea."

If this dialog sounds like a plot from a war movie it well could be, however the account consists of the bombing mission quotes taken directly from the diary of S/Sgt Herb Greer, Radio operator on a B-29 Superfortress named the "City of Monroe" during the war with Japan. The diary takes each of the 28 missions flown by the B-29 "City of Monroe" one by one and details those events as they happened over Japan. The accounts are filled with such phrases as "Great Fires, clouds of thick black smoke, horrific smells meaning flesh burning, which permeated the aircraft over the target area and lingered until they landed some 8 to 10 hours later on Guam. Bombing missions were repeated until most of the industrial areas of Japans major cities were nothing but ashes. The final days were approaching when Hiroshima and Nagasaki would be devastated with the two atomic bombs. The gentleman that I speak of is my father, Herbert L. Greer and this is a book of his diary, supplemental comments and pictures that reflect on a period of time that the United States freedom and liberty were highly at risk.

Author(s) Mentioned: 
Greer, Ron
Wicks, Mike